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NHL Short Notes

THREE HARD LAPS

* A Jets victory on Tuesday locked in the Scotia North Division’s First Round matchups for the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs, with Toronto squaring off with Montreal and Edmonton going head-to-head with Winnipeg.

* The Capitals benefited from a last-second goal in regulation to defeat the Bruins ahead of their First Round series, which begins on Saturday.

* The Presidents’ Trophy race takes center stage tonight, with the Golden Knights, Avalanche and Maple Leafs all in contention for the honor.



 

MAPLE LEAFS, CANADIENS SET TO CLASH IN FIRST ROUND MATCHUP

A playoff series 42 years in the making will take place during the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs when two Original Six franchises clash for their 16th all-time postseason meeting. With Winnipeg’s victory over Vancouver, the first-place Maple Leafs (35-13-6, 76 points) will face off against the fourth-seeded Canadiens (24-21-10, 58 points) in the playoffs for the first time since 1979. Montreal holds an 8-7 edge in the previous 15 head-to-head showdowns.



* The Maple Leafs and Canadiens are set to become the seventh set of clubs with at least 16 meetings in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, joining the Canadiens-Bruins (34), Maple Leafs-Red Wings (23), Canadiens-Blackhawks (17), Canadiens-Rangers (16), Maple Leafs-Bruins (16) and Blackhawks-Red Wings (16).

 

FLIPPING THE CALENDAR BACK TO APRIL 1979
Montreal’s trio of Jacque Lemaire (4-4—8), Larry Robinson (3-5—8) and Guy Lafleur (2-6—8) led all skaters in scoring when the Maple Leafs and Canadiens last met in the Stanley Cup Playoffs during the 1979 Quarterfinals. The Canadiens would complete a four-game sweep of their Original Six rival en route to capturing their 21st of an NHL-record 23 Stanley Cups (since 1917-18).

* Robinson had multiple points in three of the four contests, including a multi-goal effort and the overtime winner in Game 4. Excluding total-goal series, Robinson became the sixth defenseman in NHL history to score a series-clinching goal in overtime. The others: Babe Pratt (Game 2 of 1937 QF w/ NYR), Leo Reise Jr. (Game 7 of 1950 SF w/ DET), Bill Barilko (Game 5 of 1951 SCF w/ TOR), Bobby Orr (Game 4 of 1970 SCF w/ BOS) and Andre Dupont (Game 4 of 1975 QF w/ PHI).


WHEELER LEADS WINNIPEG TO VICTORY WITH FOUR-POINT OUTING
Jets captain Blake Wheeler (2-2—4) recorded his 10th career four-point outing, all of which have come in a Jets uniform, to lead his team to victory and help Winnipeg (29-23-3, 61 points) secure its position as the third seed in the Scotia North Division for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Jets are set to face the second-place Oilers (34-18-2, 70 points) in the postseason for the first time in their franchises’ history. However, Edmonton went 6-0 in playoff series against the original Jets – with the last one played more than 30 years ago (1990 DSF).


CAPITALS EDGE BRUINS IN POSTSEASON TUNEUP

Michael Raffl found the back of the net with three seconds remaining in regulation, the second-latest go-ahead goal in Capitals history, to help Washington defeat Boston in each team’s regular-season finale. The Capitals and Bruins, who split their season series with four wins apiece (WSH: 4-4-0; BOS: 4-2-2), will contest the opening game of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs on Saturday (May 15 at 7:15 p.m. ET on NBC, SN, CBC & TVA Sports).
 

* Washington and Boston are no strangers to tightly-contested affairs. When the two clubs last met in a best-of-seven playoff series during the 2012 Conference Quarterfinals, the Bruins entered as the defending Stanley Cup champions. That series, which featured four overtime contests, was the first in NHL history to feature all seven contests each decided by a one-goal margin. Since then, only one other series has also witnessed the feat (NYR vs. WSH: 2015 R2).



STASTNY SKATES IN 1,000TH CAREER GAME
Paul Stastny skated in his 1,000th career game on Tuesday – a feat five other members of the 2005 NHL Draft class have also accomplished, including two this season: Sidney Crosby (1,039 GP) and Keith Yandle (1,032 GP).



RACE FOR THE PRESIDENTS’ TROPHY TAKES SPOTLIGHT TONIGHT

All eyes will be on the race for the Presidents’ Trophy, with the Golden Knights (39-14-2, 80 points), Avalanche (37-13-4, 78 points) and Maple Leafs (35-13-6, 76 points) all in contention for the end-of-season honor heading into tonight’s action. Vegas OR Colorado has the opportunity to wrap up the award tonight, secure home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs and a First Round meeting against the Blues. 

 

* The Golden Knights will clinch the Presidents’ Trophy and the No. 1 seed in the Honda West Division tonight if their points earned against the Sharks exceeds the Avalanche’s points earned against the Kings. Vegas would become the first franchise in the modern era (since 1943-44) to finish No. 1 in the NHL standings within its first four seasons.

 

* The Avalanche will clinch the Presidents’ Trophy tonight if they defeat the Kings in any fashion and the Sharks defeat the Golden Knights in regulation. If Colorado wins both of its final two remaining games in any fashion (tonight and tomorrow vs. LAK), they will claim the Presidents’ Trophy and No. 1 seed in the Honda West Division regardless of any results involving Vegas and Toronto. The Avalanche could finish No. 1 in the League standings for the third time since moving to Denver and first time in 20 years (also 1996-97 and 2000-01).

 

* The Maple Leafs, meanwhile, will remain in the hunt for the Presidents’ Trophy if they defeat the Senators in any fashion and the Sharks defeat the Golden Knights in regulation and the Kings defeat the Avalanche in any fashion.

 

QUICK CLICKS

NHL and WEAR by Erin Andrews to launch new line of women’s apparel

NHL announces start times for upcoming Flames/Canucks games

Frederik Andersen back for Toronto on Wednesday

Alex Ovechkin’s streak of consecutive 30-goal seasons comes to an end

Thanks to the NHL PR department for the information above.

Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

Avatar

The Bruins farm team more than held their own against the Caps. At least 12 regulars were held out of the Bruins lineup. They went with their 3rd string goalie. Caps scored with one second left in the game for the winner. The AHL Bruins gave the Caps a real run this game. Mantha a non-factor. 

Washington vs Boston to start this weekend. Bruins get their full lineup back. I’ll take the real Bruins in 6

Posted by exor54 on 05/12/21 at 10:33 AM ET

ilovehomers's avatar

Speaking of Mantha, he is on a 10 game goal-less streak.

Posted by ilovehomers on 05/12/21 at 11:21 AM ET

SYF's avatar

Speaking of Mantha, he is on a 10 game goal-less streak.

Posted by ilovehomers on 05/12/21 at 11:21 AM ET

I guess the honeymoon’s already oveer.

Posted by SYF from impossible and oddly communally possessive sluts on 05/12/21 at 02:07 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Mantha a non-factor.

Vrana has as many goals since coming to Detroit (eight) as Mantha has total points in Washington. And Mantha has played three more games. Thanks also for Panik, Caps. And the first-rounder. And the second-rounder.

That deal was even more lopsided than the Tatar deal with Vegas where the Wings ended up with Veleno, Robert Mastrosimone, and a third-rounder this year.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 05/12/21 at 02:43 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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