The Toronto Maple Leafs finally break their 19-year curse

May 1, 2023
The competition’s never been tighter, with a whopping 14 NHL first-round playoff games needing overtime (OT).
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SOURCE: TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS/TWITTER
SOURCE: TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS/TWITTER

The GIST: The competition’s never been tighter, with a whopping 14 NHL first-round playoff games needing overtime (OT). And it could soon be 15 as the NY Rangers vs. NJ Devils meet for their Game 7 tonight at 8 p.m. ET.

  • But with the dust settled on nearly all of the first-round series, here’s how round two is shaping up.

Eastern Conference: As mentioned, the Toronto Maple Leafs finally broke their first-round curse with Saturday’s 2–1 OT Game 6 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning. Started from the bottom now they’re here, and hungry for more.

  • Next up, they’ll face the Wild Card Florida Panthers, who shocked the Stanley Cup favorite Boston Bruins 4–3 in OT in yesterday’s Game 7 to complete a massive turnaround. They don’t call ’em the comeback cats for nothing.

Western Conference: The Canadian squads continued to deliver, as center Connor McDavid led the Edmonton Oilers to an explosive 5–4 Game 6 dub over the LA Kings on Saturday and a ticket to the second round for the second-straight year. But their reward? A date with their toughest competition yet, the Western Conference–leading Vegas Golden Knights.

  • Elsewhere, the newbie Seattle Kraken earned their first-ever franchise playoff series win by taking down the injury-riddled defending champion Colorado Avalanche 2–1 in last night’s Game 7. Now for a round two date with the Dallas Stars. Bring it on.