The New York Islanders are on a Stanley Cup quest. The Isles are returning to the Stanley Cup playoffs for the initial time since 2021 after defeating the Montréal Canadiens 4-2 on Wednesday night at UBS Arena. Along with the Florida Panthers, New York is expected to be one of the Eastern Conference’s wild-card clubs.
The New York Islanders’ victory also removed the Pittsburgh Penguins from postseason contention. The Pens last missed the playoffs in 2006 after having a lengthy playoff streak throughout the NHL, NBA, NFL, and MLB.
It is also the first time after 2006 that the playoffs would not include Pittsburgh Penguins great Sidney Crosby or Washington Capitals superstar Alexander Ovechkin.
While some of the pairings are still to be finalized, here’s an overview of the current Stanley Cup playoff field in the aftermath of the Isles’ victory.
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Bracket for the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs
The Bruins have secured the top spot in the Eastern Conference and home-ice advantage for the 2023 Stanley Cup playoffs. The Maple Leafs & Lightning will meet in the first round.
- Boston Bruins: 64-12-5, 133 points
- Toronto Maple Leafs: 49-21-11, 109 points
- Tampa Bay Lightning: 45-30-6, 96 points
The Rangers have been assigned the No. 3 team in the Metropolitan Division. So, in the first round, they will play the No. 2 seed, either the Hurricanes or the Devils.
- Carolina Hurricanes: 51-21-9, 111 points
- New Jersey Devils: 51-22-8, 110 points
- New York Rangers: 47-21-13, 107 points
Eastern Conference Wild Card
With a win versus the Hurricanes on Thursday, the Panthers will clinch the No. 1 wild-card place in the Eastern Conference.
- New York Islanders: 42-31-9, 93 points
- Florida Panthers: 42-31-8, 92 points
None of these openings are currently filled. The Wild and Stars each possess one regular-season game left, while the Avalanche has two.
- Dallas Stars: 46-21-14, 106 points
- Colorado Avalanche: 49-24-7, 105 points
- Minnesota Wild: 46-25-10, 102 points
The Kings have clinched the No. 3 spot in the Pacific Division and will face the No. 2 seed, whether the Golden Knights or the Oilers, in the first game of the playoffs. With a win against the Seattle Kraken on Thursday, Vegas will claim the division.
- Vegas Golden Knights: 50-22-9, 109 points
- Edmonton Oilers: 49-23-9, 107 points
- Los Angeles Kings: 46-25-10, 102 points
Western Conference Wild Card
All of these teams are well entrenched in their current places.
- Seattle Kraken: 46-27-8, 100 points
- Winnipeg Jets: 46-32-3, 95 points
Matchups Expected After April 12
The Stanley Cup playoffs in 2023 are set to begin on April 17.
According to DraftKings Sportsbook, the Bruins are presently the bookmaker’s pick to win the Stanley Cup at +350. The next-best odds are +650 for the Avalanche.
- A1 Boston Bruins vs. WC2 Florida Panthers
- A2 Toronto Maple Leafs vs. A3 Tampa Bay Lightning
- M1 Carolina Hurricanes vs. WC1 New York Islanders
- M2 New Jersey Devils vs. M3 New York Rangers
- C1 Dallas Stars vs. WC1 Seattle Kraken
- C2 Colorado Avalanche vs. C3 Minnesota Wild
- P1 Vegas Golden Knights vs. WC2 Winnipeg Jets
- P2 Edmonton Oilers vs. P3 Los Angeles Kings