In just a little over one month, the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs will kick off, but what teams will make it to the playoffs is still up in the air. Each team is racing through must-win games in order to land their shot at winning the Stanley Cup over the next month. The NHL Hockey schedule showcases which teams are going head to head for a fighting chance. While there is still plenty of time on the ice, the outline of the 2018 NHL playoffs is beginning to take shape.
The probability report has brought great surprise this season. Last year’s champions, the Pittsburgh Penguins slid into the big “W” during an extremely controversial game, where the Predators took a hard loss ending the 2017 playoffs. Unlike last season’s defeat, the probability report places the Predators with the highest chances of winning out of all teams in the Western Conference. However, Pittsburgh’s chance at a “three-peat” of winning the Stanley Cup three years in a row isn’t impossible. Could we see these two teams at yet another head to head in the last round of the playoffs this season?
Heading over to the Eastern Conference, the Atlantic Division’s Tampa Bay Lightning have the highest statical chance of winning the playoffs this year. At 46 wins and only 17 losses, this team is 13 wins over the league average for a season. Tampa has been a season favorite since the beginning to win this year’s Stanley Cup. Brayden Point has scored huge goals this hockey season, making this team truly stand out among others.
The Philadelphia Flyers have really brought it together in the second half of this season. Placing probability aside, Philadelphia is no fan of underdogs loosing. After all, the Eagles were proclaimed NFL’s Super Bowl Champions this year. Could Philadelphia see a second championship?
The odds for the Flyers winning the Stanley Cup are higher than you think. Although they recently lost 4-1 against the hot and heavy Panthers, the Flyers have made major strides this season. Flyers goalie, Petr Mrazek, is determined to pick up the pace for this team and its chance at the Stanley Cup.
If you haven’t heard it yet, The Hockey News Podcast chats more about hot teams, streaky teams, players, and more. There is still a lot of hockey left to be played this season before we truly have more insight to this year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs.