The boys recap the 8 play-in series and their questionable predictions (spoiler alert, only one host was above .500), discuss the New York Rangers winning the draft lottery, and boldly predict the 1st round of the 2020 NHL Playoffs.
The 2020 Stanley Cup Play-In round was pretty unpredictable…
The 24th place team in the NHL, Montreal Canadiens, stunned the hockey world by defeating the Pittsburgh Penguins. None of the pod hosts saw that one coming!
And almost as unexpected, the Chicago Blackhawks knocked off the stacked Edmonton Oilers in only 4 games.
The Columbus Blue Jackets looked like they had the Leafs dead in the water when they were up 3-0 with 4 minutes remaining in game 4. But then the Leafs mounted one of the most epic comebacks in NHL history scoring 3 goals in less than 4 minutes to force overtime before Auston Matthews scored the OT winner.
But the comeback only delayed the inevitable, with Columbus winning 3-0 in game 5.
We bet the NHL loves having McDavid, Crosby, Matthews, Draisaitl, Malkin, and Marner all knocked out of the 2020 Playoffs.
The Coyotes defeating the Predators was the one other upset of the play-in series with the Canucks, Flames, Hurricanes, and Islanders all winning their respective series.
And with the round robin of the top 4 teams from each conference complete, we officially have the NHL’s 2020 Playoff Bracket and 1st round matchups:
As a reminder, the NHL will re-seed teams after the conclusion of each round.
Or course the HPC podcast crew had to make their bold 1st round predictions… and then their Stanley Cup Final predictions because, well, why not?
And lastly, before Weekly Picks, although the Leafs were this close to victory, the boys discuss the New York Rangers winning the draft lottery and their right to select Alexis Lafreniere 1st overall in this year’s draft.
But still, some people weren’t happy with the result…
Regardless if you do or don’t like the NHL’s return-to-play plan, they expect to save $500 million by salvaging the playoffs via ad revenue. Those are a lot of dollars to ignore.