Intro to the NHL playoffs: everything you need to know before the postseason


It all sounds a bit weird, right?

While we’ve had weeks to talk about how the Stanley Cup Playoffs were set to become a two-city experience, August through September it’s still hard to fathom that on the weekends. next, we’ll be watching post-season NHL hockey live from noon to midnight.

As a range of sports continue to make long-awaited returns, we thought it might be useful to have a cheat sheet for a summer hockey session that’s unlike anything we’ve seen. . In case you forgot – because you don’t have anything else on your mind these days, right? – here’s some essential information on this puck extravaganza taking place in Toronto and Edmonton.

From the Stanley Cup Qualifiers to the Stanley Cup Finals, stream all 2020 Stanley Cup Playoff games live, blackout-free, on Sportsnet NOW.

Who is a part and how do we do it?

NHL teams have ranked the teams by points percentage and rank the top 12 from each conference in the postseason. The top four teams from East and West will play a game against each of the other three clubs to receive a pass in their conference to determine the No.1 through No.4 seeds for the main draw. playoffs. These games will be decided by the usual rules of regular season overtime and shots on goal three on three if necessary, and any tie in the round robin standings will be broken by the teams’ point percentage in the regular season.

Teams of five to 12 on each side play a preliminary round with the best of five series, with the No.5 seed against No.12, No.6 against No.11 and so on. . These matches will not use overtime or three-on-three shootouts; the extra time is 20 minutes until we have a winner.

Collectively, these games are under the umbrella of the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs. All player stats from these contests will count towards the playoff totals. So if you score three goals in the playoffs and 10 more in the playoffs, for history books purposes, your total for the 2020 postseason is 13.

Once eight teams come out of the qualifying round, the main playoff draw will appear as it always does with four rounds of the top seven series. There is no March Madness style installment this year for the first time since the 2013 playoffs. Instead, the highest ranked team at the start of each round will play the lowest ranked team, such as this was the case for many years before the league moved to a four-division format in 2013-14.

Each team begins with an exhibition match which will take place from Tuesday.

What’s going on with the draft lottery?

As you probably remember, when the time came to reveal who would be first in the overall standings in the 2020 NHL Draft, Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly flipped a card with an NHL logo on it. As one would have expected from the calculations, a “fictitious” team – that is, one of the 16 teams playing in the preliminary round – had their number called for the first pick. Each of the eight teams that lose a best-of-five series – no matter where they finished in the regular season – will have a 12.5 percent chance of picking first overall in October.

The second and final phase of the lottery will take place before the first round of the Stanley Cup main tournament.

Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman talk to a lot of people in the hockey world, and then they tell listeners what they heard and what they think about it.

Who is he playing for now?

The trade deadline fell on February 24 of this year, so we only had two and a half weeks to get used to seeing guys who moved on or around that day in their new surroundings before the league. don’t take a break.

Here’s a quick reminder of some of the actions taken five months ago. The Carolina Hurricanes created huge success, picking up defensemen Brady Skjei (of the Rangers) and Sami Vatanen (of the Devils). Carolina may also have found a No.2 center for the next decade by beating the Florida Panthers for Vincent Trocheck.

The Vegas Golden Knights made a big play to get Chicago goaltender Robin Lehner in a wacky tripartite deal involving the Maple Leafs so Toronto could keep 50% of Lehner’s salary. The Calgary Flames improved their blue line depth by adding Derek Forbort and Erik Gustafsson, moves that seem even more important now that defenseman Travis Hamonic has opted out of this summer event. (Keep in mind that players had the option of skipping this tournament without penalty if they had any concerns of any kind. A handful of them decided to go this route, with Mike Green of Edmonton being the more important after Hamonic.)

The Penguins repatriated Conor Sheary from Buffalo and took Patrick Marleau from San Jose; the Jets added Vegas middleman Cody Eakin and the Islanders landed wily center and former Ottawa Senator Jean-Gabriel Pageau.

While Green is not a suitable fit for the Oilers, they have newcomers Andreas Athanasiou and Tyler Ennis in the mix.

Unfit to play

NHL teams have never had an injury – especially in the playoffs – and it won’t be any different now that they’re in full swing. In the context of this global pandemic, the league will not offer any details as to why a certain player is not in training or in the roster; he will simply be declared “unfit to play”.

See the obscuring of the wound as a form of warm familiarity in these weirdest moments.


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