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NHLThe National Hockey League (NHL) is a winter pro ice hockey league, founded on November 26, 1917 in Montreal, Canada. The league once consisted of only six teams in the US and Canada, with the original six teams being the Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs, Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, and New York Rangers. Although there have been several expansions over the years, the original six teams remain in the league. Today, the NHL consists of 31 teams, including 24 in the US and seven in Canada, and is considered to be one of the premier professional ice hockey leagues in the world. The NHL season consists of 162 games per regular season, where teams battle to get the coveted Stanley Cup and represent their country in the playoffs. The playoffs begin after the regular season ends and feature 16 teams competing for the Stanley Cup. During playoffs, the format is a best-of-seven series for each playoffs round. The most popular players in the current season include struggling Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs; big name Vladimir Tarasenko of the St. Louis Blues; Russian Magician Evgeni Malkin from the Pittsburgh Penguins; Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers; and multi-talented Patrice Bergeron from the Boston Bruins. The NHL has several prestigious awards each season, including Hart Memorial Trophy, awarded to the player displaying excellence each season; the Calder Memorial Trophy, given to the top rookie player; the Ted Lindsay Award, chosen by the players themselves to recognize the best player each year; and the James Norris Memorial Trophy, given to the top defenseman in the league. Hockey's history with the NHL dates back to the early 1900s, and its history is present to this day in the form of records and statistics. Some of the most iconic records in hockey against teams include the Detroit Red Wings with most consecutive seasons with at least one player scoring 90 points; the Montreal Canadiens with the most Stanley Cup Championships (24); and the Toronto Maple Leafs with the most consecutive playoff appearances (29). During the 2020-2021 season, Edmonton Oilers superstar, Connor McDavid, broke a long-standing NHL record of Hart Trophy winners scoring more than 120 points with his 126 points. With its rich history and current figures in the ice hockey arena, the NHL continues to be a beloved worldwide professional league and brings entertainment to its viewers across the world.
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Chicago Blackhawks at Los Angeles KingsNHLThe Kings seek their fifth straight victory over the Blackhawks. Los Angeles captain Anze Kopitar boasts four goals in two games against Chicago this season. Connor Bedard (CHI) concludes what is expected to be a Calder Trophy-winning campaign.
Seattle Kraken at Minnesota WildNHLWest adversaries in the Wild and Kraken complete disappointing seasons. Minnesota has won six of eight meetings after claiming a pair by a combined 8-2 score in 2023-24. The Wild's Kirill Kaprizov totaled two goals and two assists in those games.
Anaheim Ducks at Vegas Golden KnightsNHLFrom T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
San Jose Sharks at Calgary FlamesNHLThe Sharks skate with the Flames in a regular-season finale. San Jose won 6-3 in its last trip to Cowtown on Feb. 15. Calgary's Dustin Wolf, who celebrated his 23rd birthday during the Flames' last outing, has won three of his past five home starts.
Washington Capitals at Philadelphia FlyersNHLPhiladelphia and Washington, battling for the East's final wild-card spot, finish their regular seasons. The Flyers kept their postseason hopes alive with wins over the Rangers and Devils. Philadelphia has not qualified for the playoffs since 2020.
New York Islanders at New Jersey DevilsNHLFrom Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
New York Islanders at Carolina HurricanesNHLThe Hurricanes host the Islanders in Game 1 of their first-round series. Carolina swept New York in the 2019 second round, and needed six games to dismiss the Isles in 2023. The Canes have qualified for six straight postseasons under Rod Brind'Amour.
New York Islanders at Carolina HurricanesNHLDepuis la PNC Arena de Raleigh, États-Unis.
Toronto Maple Leafs at Boston BruinsNHLThe Maple Leafs and Bruins face off in Game 1 of their East quarterfinal. Boston has won the past six playoff series meetings, most recently advancing past Toronto in the 2018 and 2019 first rounds. The B's won all four get-togethers in 2023-24.
Tampa Bay Lightning at Florida PanthersNHLThe Sunshine State rivalry hits the postseason as the Lightning and Panthers play Game 1 in the East's first round. It is the third time the clubs have clashed in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, with Tampa Bay taking both previous series in 2021 and 2022.
Washington Capitals at New York RangersNHLThe Capitals face the Rangers in Game 1 of an East first-round set. The clubs face off in the playoffs for the first time since 2015, which capped a run of five meetings in seven postseasons. Alex Ovechkin (WSH) has 13 playoff goals against New York.