When Is The Hockey Playoffs Start? [Ultimate Guide!]

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The 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs will officially get underway on Tuesday, April 9. But, to determine which team is going to contest the Cup, it’s important to look at the previous year’s results. The postseason will last for about a month, starting with the first round and leading to the Stanley Cup Finals. The winner will be crowned at the end of the 2019 season.

The defending champions, the St. Louis Blues, won the Central Division with 101 points – just three fewer than the runner-up, the Nashville Predators. Both teams were in a battle for the last playoff spot. After 105 cumulative points, Nashville secured the second seed and a first-round matchup with the Blues. On the other hand, the Blues were seeded third and played the Chicago Blackhawks, who finished with 100 points, in the first round.

Stanley Cup Playoffs Start Time

Every postseason begins on a Tuesday night. But not every tournament finishes on a Tuesday night. Depending on the league, some playoffs run for a few less nights. In the NHL, the postseason usually lasts for around 61 games. The first round will begin on April 9 and will conclude on Tuesday, April 16. The second round will begin on the following Tuesday and will last until the conference finals.

The Finals will begin on the following Tuesday and will conclude on June 7. So there’s no rest for the fighters during the NHL postseason.

First Round

The first round of the playoffs is often referred to as the ‘first kick at the can’. It’s the first opportunity for teams to prove themselves. The season before the playoffs, a lot of teams are still adjusting to the new points system and the resulting changes in the standings. This year, the Chicago Blackhawks and the St. Louis Blues will kick off the postseason on Tuesday, April 9. It will be the first time that these teams have met in the playoffs since the 2016 NHL Draft Lottery when the Blues won the right to draft first overall and the Blackhawks went second overall.

The Blackhawks entered the playoffs as the top seed in the Central Division. They boast the best regular season record in the NHL with 125 points. They’ll play the Blues, a team they split their season series with, in a best-of-seven series. The winner will advance to the second round. The Blues won the season series 3-1 and, as the No. 3 seed, will square off against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round.

Second Round

The second round of the playoffs will begin on the following Tuesday and will conclude on the following Tuesday. But, due to the constraints of the collective bargaining agreement, teams won’t play again until the conference finals. The Los Angeles Kings and the San Jose Sharks will start the second round on April 16. It will begin a new chapter in their rivalry. The Kings knocked off the Sharks in six games in the season series and, as the top seed in the Atlantic Division, they’ll host the Sharks in a best-of-seven series. The winner will advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Stanley Cup Finals

The Stanley Cup Finals will begin on the following Tuesday and will conclude on June 7. This year will mark the 100th anniversary of the Stanley Cup. So it’s fitting that the championship series will pit the two highest-seeded teams in the league against each other. The Chicago Blackhawks, who won the Cup last year, host the Tampa Bay Lightning in a best-of-seven series. The defending champion St. Louis Blues host the San Jose Sharks in the other semifinal. The winner of each series will advance to the finals and compete for the Stanley Cup. The winner will be crowned during the player introductions at the end of Game 7.

The 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs will begin on Tuesday, April 9. Which teams are you looking forward to seeing more of?

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