2017 NHL Conference Semi-Finals

The Stanley Cup.

The first round of the 2017 National Hockey League (NHL) playoffs have been completed.  Eight teams have qualified for the second round of the playoffs, the Conference Semi-Finals.

After the first round of the playoffs, I have a record of 4-4 with the Edmonton Oilers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Ottawa Senators, and St. Louis Blues all winning their first round series.

This round of the playoffs breakdowns as follows:

Eastern Conference

Pittsburgh Penguins (111 points) vs. Washington Capitals (118 points)
These two teams have faced off nine times before in the postseason.  Pittsburgh has won eight of those nine match-ups (1991, 1992, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2009, 2016), with Washington winning in 1994.  Both teams split their four games in the regular season.  Pittsburgh beat out Nashville in five games to make it to the second round, while Washington beat out Toronto in six games – all six of those games were decided by one goal, including five games (including the deciding game) going to overtime.

Look for Pittsburgh to beat Washington in six games.

New York Rangers (102 points) vs. Ottawa Senators (98 points)
Both teams teams played six game series in the first round, with New York beating the Montreal Canadiens and Ottawa beating out Boston.  This is the second time the two teams have met in the playoffs, with New York winning the first series in 2012.

Look for New York to win in seven games.

Western Conference

Nashville Predators (94 points) vs. St. Louis Blues (99 points)
Nashville eliminated the Chicago Blackhawks in four straight games while St. Louis beat out the Minnesota Wild in five games.  This is the first playoff match-up between the two teams.  Nashville won three out of the five regular season games this year.

Look for St. Louis to win in six games.

Edmonton Oilers (103 points) vs. Anaheim Ducks (105 points)
Anaheim eliminated the Calgary Flames in four straight games while Edmonton beat out the San Jose Sharks in six games.  Edmonton won the only playoff series back in 2oo6 – the Western Conference Finals.  Edmonton also won three of the five regular season games this year.

Look for Edmonton to win in seven games.

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