2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs – X Factors, Bruins-Hurricanes, Lightning-Maple Leafs and Kings-Oilers Predictions

While the first round of the 2022 Stanley Cup qualifiers featured quite a few blowouts to our liking, it also delivered no fewer than three Game 7s, the ultimate “tension agreement.”

According to ESPN Stats & Information, Saturday will be the first time since April 30, 2014, that three 7 matches will be played on the same day, and will also be the first time in NHL history that two 7 matches hosted by Canadian teams will be on the same day.

To help you prepare for Boston Bruins and Carolina hurricanes (4:30 p.m. ET, ESPN), Tampa Bay Lightning Toronto Maple Leafs (7 p.m. ET, TNT) and Los Angeles Kings-Edmonton Oilers (10 p.m. EDT, ESPN), we split a path to victory for each team, determine the X factors in all three competitions and make predictions for the final outcome.

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CAR-BOS
TOR-TB
EDM-LA

4:30 p.m. Eastern time | Watch the live broadcast on ESPN

Top scorers: Brad MarchandBruins (4g | 7a)
Tony D’Angelohurricanes (1 g | 7 a)

Victory Road to Boston: The best news for the Bruins here is that they have nothing to lose. Carolina was the better team in the series overall. They were the top seed that would enter. However, the Boston team still had a chance to lead after them.

All the pressure falls on Carolina to perform in Game Seven. Simply put, the Bruins go out and play. This will be the superpower of the Bruins. They have the veteran experience of Patrice Bergeron And Brad Marchand. They have scoring talents David Pasternak And Taylor Hall. They have a solid rock goal from Jeremy Swaymanand a background led by talents Charlie McAvoy. To win Game 7, you have to be Boston. – Shelton

Victory Road to Carolina: This is why the regular season is so important. Hurricanes return to Raleigh licking their wounds, but knowing that they completely dominated the Bruins on the ice at home in the series.

They outdid them 15-4, but more importantly they scored early and often. Carolina led 2-0, 3-0, 4-0 in their home win. They have taken fewer penalties in all three home matches. They are getting better at goalkeeper, like You are Ranta 974 savings rate in Raleigh. They can get the matches they want against the two best Bruins streaks. “Obviously you’ll get the last change at home, and that’s an advantage. But you still have to come in to play,” said Devinsman. Jacob Slavin. With the size and ferocity of their fans at home, they will come to play. – Wyshynski

Shelton X Factor: This can come down to the target. Carolina played the whole series without beginning Frederic Andersen. Ranta has been great in his absence, Swayman has been equally good since he took over Linus Olmark. Swayman leads his win in Game 6, and that confidence can be passed down greatly to the Bruins.

Wyshynski X Factor: Font matching. coach bus Rod Princemore The white flag waved in Boston when it came to getting Sebastian Aho Far from the Bruins duo of Bergeron and Marchand. The Bruins had the last change, and Bergeron played most of his minutes against the Hurricanes top line. In their previous three victories, Carolina sent Jordan StahlThe line as a countermeasure against Bergeron and Marchand, while Aho turns away from them. Do it again, and the Aho streak might be the difference in Game 7.

Anticipate the end result: Chilton: 3-2 Bruins
Wyshynski: 5-3 hurricanes


7 p.m. Eastern time (TNT)

Top scorers: Nikita KucherovLightning (2 G | 6 A)
Auston Matthewsmaple leaves (4 g | 4a)

Victory Road to Tampa Bay: The Maple Leafs can talk all they want about being the best team in the series and their past playoff failures—they haven’t won a series playoffs since 2004—are buried in the past. But it’s Game 7. It’s the Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s the first time that Lightning has had to plant these seeds of doubt in the minds of their opponents and see what twisted limbs grow out of them.

Tactically, Lightning should play a tighter defense in front of him Andrei Vasilevsky Nor can they allow the Leafs to score multiple goals in quick succession as they have done in their last two games. The path to victory is clear. I’ve caught fire before Stephen StamkosAnd Victor HedmanAnd Ryan McDonaghAnd Brayden PointNikita Kucherov Alex Killorn And Andrei Vasilevsky. The Lightning won Game 7 to qualify for the Stanley Cup Final last season. Foliage 0-8 in Austin Matthews/Mitch Marner An era when they have a chance to eliminate their opponents. – Wyshynski

Victory Road to Toronto The Leafs’ sad recent history of not being able to advance in the playoffs should be enough motivation to get the job done in Game 7. Toronto were the better team in Game 6. Losing in overtime was a hard pill to swallow given the number of opportunities available. They had. Vasilevskiy has been sexy at the grid, and Toronto will expect that to be the case again in Game 7. Lightning has definitely proven in the past couple of years that they know how to win on a big stage.

However, Toronto has overtaken Tampa more often than not in this series. The main stars of the team – Matthews, Marner, William Nylander And John Tavares – They have all been important contributors in the last two games. Jack Campbell Returned to a point in the network. If the Leafs can simply maintain this status quo, and challenge Vasilevskiy a bit more with traffic up front, they have a great chance of progressing. – Shelton

Shelton X Factor: He is not so much a player as the ability to handle conditions. This series is defined by momentum swings – the big swings. With penalties called and not. Through opportunities seized and missed. Tampa has Stanley Cup pedigree here, but Toronto shouldn’t let that intimidate them. Campbell has a sub-0.900 conservation in this series (893)—and so does Vasilevskiy (.885). Almost everything has been matched so far. Game 7 will be decided in favor of the team that can keep calm and cool and collect the longest.

Wyshynski X Factor: Despite all the talk of Lightning’s impressive 17-0 record after post-season losses, the Maple Leafs will have to break a different, mind-boggling streak to advance to the next round (eight-game losing streak in matches that would have won their series.). Vasilevskiy has managed to lock in the last game of Tampa Bay’s last five victories, including two Stanley Cup wins. Let’s be real: He wasn’t great in the series, with a 0.85 save ratio behind a somewhat leaky defense. But when Lightning is ready to close, it has closed the door on many series in the past.

Anticipate the end result: Shelton: 4-2 Maple Leafs
Wyshynski: 4-3 (overtime) maple leaves


10 p.m. Eastern time | Watch the live broadcast on ESPN

Top scorers: Adrian KempeyKings (2g | 4a)
Conor MacDavidLubricants (3 g | 9 A)

The way to win in Los Angeles: “First goal win” is a cliché in the Stanley Cup playoffs, but it’s undoubtedly applicable to the series. In the victories of the Three Kings, they achieved the first blows; In their three losses, they didn’t. Scoring first allows the Kings to prepare in their defensive position. The stuff that builds a safety net when Conor McDavid inevitably scores points for Edmonton.

But to win Game 7, they’ll need two things. First, to raise their rivalry to match the level of the Oilers, who were the top 5-5 team in Game 6. Also, they would need someone to be an offensive squad maker. Trevor Moore He earned three points in their first match victory. Karl Grundstrom He earned three points in their fourth game win. Adrian Kempe scored three points and the overtime winner in their Game 5 win. Who will be the champion this time around? – Wyshynski

Victory Road to Edmonton: Give the disc to Connor McDavid. Just kidding (sort of). Carrying Edmonton stars today in the series, though, from McDavid (12 points) to Evander King (seven goals) for Leon Drystel (eight points). These big names must appear again, against a Kings who have great offensive depth and are able to lock down defensively.

And then there Jonathan Quick, who had equal parts revelational and decadent in the series. The Oilers like to generate rush opportunities, but making Quick uncomfortable with traffic and more commitment to the game of the bike can pay off early. Finishing any final game of any series is a marathon effort. Oilers have to treat Game 7 as such. – Shelton

Shelton X Factor: Philip Danault. How good was he with the Kings on that series, and the entire season, really? He has repeatedly frustrated the Oilers with a stifling defensive match. Danault does everything for Los Angeles, whether it’s winning critical encounters, scoring goals at the right time or successfully fighting for pucks. It’s the definition of a difference maker, with the ability to turn Game 7 in Los Angeles’ favor.

Wyshynski X Factor: Does Kwik have another vintage performance in it? The goalkeeper has battled the Kings in all of their victories, including his 4 out of 31 save performance that made the series. Although we don’t expect that kind of effort in this game, Quick is the definition of the X-factor. If he’s playing, he’ll be the difference.

Expect the end result: Shelton: 4-3 Kings
Wyshynski: 3-2 Kings

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