The past couple of weeks have shocked National Hockey League (NHL) fans, new and old. As the Stanley Cup Playoffs reach their second round, fans are on the edge of their seats. During Game 1 of the Western Conference second round at American Airlines Center in Dallas on Tuesday, May 2, Dallas and Seattle faced off, showing no mercy.
The Seattle Kraken, being a relatively new team, have proved themselves on a national level. While it’s just the first round, they’ve already exceeded fans’ expectations by diminishing the Dallas Stars in the round.
Although Dallas Stars’ alternate captain Joe Pavelski was back for this game, his appearance was not enough to turn this around. He hasn’t played since April 17 due to a concussion following a collision in the second period of Game 1. “First lap of warmups, felt a shot of adrenaline right there, [I] was excited. Starting the game was just as much fun,” he said to NHL News. “We battled all night. It was a good game. We were right there. Obviously tough loss, we want to get those.”
“We’re a pretty mature group in there and we trusted that the process was going to get it done,” Kraken’s forward and alternate captain Yanni Gourde told NHL. “Keep working and keep at it and eventually we were going to get our break, and we got it there.” Now that they’re up 1-0 in the Western playoffs, the team is anticipating great outcomes for the future.
As for the Eastern playoffs, the Boston Bruins’ season hit them where it hurt. On Sunday night, April 30, the Bruins faced a devastating loss to the Florida Panthers, in Game 7 of the first-round series. Their motivation has been strong throughout the entire season, but they fell short in this impactful game.
”The emotions are still hard. The scars will be there for a while,” Bruins’ captain Patrice Bergeron shared with ESPN. “It’s too early right now to even make a sound decision [about next year]. I really want to make sure I make the right call. I don’t know how long it’s going to take.”
Closer to home, both New York teams have been eliminated from this year’s playoffs within the last few weeks. The Rangers put up a tough fight in their rounds against the New Jersey Devils, taking the loss of 4-3 overall in the final game. The Devils came out triumphant with their winning of the series. As for the New York Islanders, who were up against the Carolina Hurricanes, they didn’t even make it to the seventh game, as they faced an overall loss of 4-2, making way for the Hurricanes to win the series.