Which second-round matchup in the west has been most exciting for you?
IAN SHEPPARD: For me, we haven’t seen the same sort of excitement that came with the round one upsets but for me, the series I’m most interested in has been the Blues Stars series. With the series tied at 2-2, each game so far has been one or two goal games. Not to mention the exciting finish to Game 3 with Patrick Maroon scoring late to win it, and Dallas bouncing back in Game 4 to tie the series.
This Series has been the closest with a total of 24 goals through four games. This series will almost definitely go to seven games with the back and forth action we’ve seen so far.
WYATT ZIEGER: In the West, it has to be the Av’s and Sharks.
TYLER YAREMCHUK: I’ll break the tie here and go with the Blues and Stars series. There’s been thrilling finishes, games with lots of goals, games with great goaltending. It’s had a bit of everything. I also think the winner of this series will go to the Stanley Cup Finals so I’m really keeping a close eye on this one.
Which second-round matchup in the east has been most exciting for you?
IAN SHEPPARD: This one is a pretty easy one. The Islanders/Canes series has been really one-sided so far with the 3-0 series lead for Carolina, so I’ll have to go with Columbus and Boston. No one expected the Jackets to make it past Tampa, let alone sweep them. I for one didn’t think they’d have a chance to make it out of the second round after the first round upset.
They have found themselves in prime position to compete with Boston and potentially make a splash into the ECF and I’ll be tuning in all series long to see if they can do it! Excluding all of that, two games so far have gone into OT with three games being decided by one goal, and each team exchanging wins resulting in a 2-2 series tie. Talk about an exciting series.
WYATT ZIEGER: The East is an easy answer, Bruins/Jackets. Carolina has runaway on the Islanders but the other East matchup has been tighter than the lid on a pickle jar. Columbus has approximately 6 more wins than most would of thought to date and the Bruins who remain the most “obvious” cup pick haven’t pulled away at all.
This has all the makings of a seven-game series in what has been a sub-par 2nd round. I’m still excited to see how Carolina and New York plays out but I wouldn’t hold my breath Islanders fans.
TYLER YAREMCHUK: It’s definitely Boston and Columbus. It’s fast and it’s hard hitting. Both of these teams have goaltending capable of stealing a game yet they’re both capable of giving up five or six goals on any given night. I love that element of unpredictability. Like the Dallas/St. Louis series, I believe the winner of this one is going to the Cup Final, so I got my eyes glued to this series.
Who’s been the MVP of the playoffs thus far?
IAN SHEPPARD: It’s tough to argue with what Logan Couture has done so far in helping his team make it past the first round and into a 2-2 series tie with Colorado while leading the playoffs with 9 goals. But for me, it’s Nathan MacKinnon. MacKinnon leads the playoffs in points with 13 and has been a one-man wrecking crew all playoffs.
His six goals are second in the postseason only behind Couture’s nine, but he almost singlehandedly took down the Calgary Flames in round one and has so far scored three goals in each round. He continues to be a playmaker and a leader for his team, one that much like Columbus has over excelled the expectations that were laid upon them.
WYATT ZIEGER: There are a few deserving players as of today; MacKinnon, Bobrovsky, Couture, but it has been Jacob Slavin who has impressed me most.
TYLER YAREMCHUK: I really like the way Logan Couture has stepped up with Joe Pavelski out of the lineup. He’s been the heartbeat of that Sharks team and that video of him yelling “that’s one” at the Sharks bench during their comeback against Vegas will be iconic in San Jose if they go all the way this year. He leads the playoffs in goals with nine like Ian mentioned so not only has he brought energy and leadership, he’s brought the offense to back it up.