The NHL Playoffs are finally upon us, which means it’s time to look ahead to what the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs hold. From the best team in hockey down to those who limped in at the very end of the season, this year’s field is loaded with teams itching to see their championship dreams realized. All the action kicks off April 30th, so let’s take a look at what’s in store for the Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs.
|SERIES D||TIME (ET)||#4 VS. #5||NETWORKS|
|WEDNESDAY, MAY 1, 2013||7 P.M.||TORONTO AT BOSTON||CNBC, CBC, RDS|
|SATURDAY, MAY 4, 2013||7 P.M.||TORONTO AT BOSTON||CNBC, CBC, RDS|
|MONDAY, MAY 6, 2013||7 P.M.||BOSTON AT TORONTO||NHLN-US, CBC, RDS|
|WEDNESDAY, MAY 8, 2013||7 P.M.||BOSTON AT TORONTO||NHLN-US, CBC, RDS|
|*FRIDAY, MAY 10, 2013||7 P.M.||TORONTO AT BOSTON||CBC, RDS|
|*SUNDAY, MAY 12, 2013||TBD||BOSTON AT TORONTO||CBC, RDS|
|*MONDAY, MAY 13, 2013||TBD||TORONTO AT BOSTON||CBC, RDS|
The Bruins are coming off a season where they finished far sooner than they’d have liked to and this year they could face a similar fate. But they’re a tough team to play because they’re spread out when it comes to talent. Most teams have stacked lines at the top but thin out at lines three and four. The Bruins are loaded with playmakers on all their lines which makes them a real headache to matchup against. But Boston isn’t mobile and will have to rely on wearing teams down in order to win.
Toronto Maple Leafs:
James Reimer is a man possessed. At the beginning of the season, the Maple Leafs were trying to pull the trigger on a deal that landed them Vancouver’s Roberto Luongo, as many thought if they don’t get a goalie, they won’t go anywhere. Netminder James Reimer was already on roster but he won over everyone in Toronto with his season saving play in goal. But Reimer has no playoff track record and the Maple Leafs allow around 30 shots per game, and that’s against everyone, not just elite playoff teams who know how to capitalize.
The outstanding and surprising goaltending by Reimer has been a bright spot for Toronto and is what has landed them in the post season. But they allow way too many shots for comfort and while the Bruins aren’t the most mobile of teams, they know how to seize an opportunity when it comes along. This is an Original Six matchup, which will appease the old school hockey nuts out there, but it won’t love up to the glory of what this rivalry used to be.
Prediction: Boston Bruins win series 4-2