National Hockey League roundup: Blue Jackets stun Lightning with 3rd-period comeback

2019 NHL playoff preview Lightning vs. Blue Jackets

The next month is bound to be an entertaining one for even the most casual hockey fan, and with 16 victories separating one of these teams from hoisting the Stanley Cup, the road to that ultimate prize for 15 of these teams will end in disappointment. With every team starting at zero wins, here is how they stack up heading into the 2019 playoffs. And they still have plenty of time.

Dallas will have their hands full with the Predators. That same skill and experience - along with Braden Holtby - will be the difference again in game 2 in Washington Saturday afternoon as the Caps pull away even more for a 2-0 series lead. Ben Bishop might need to play the role of God in order to escape Nashville. Let's just say that with one game left, three teams could have won the division; it was that close. Vegas will make this a series once they get back home, but the Sharks earned some trust and are the play at -130. On Thursday, the most coveted trophy in sports with make its rounds around our neighborhood, but the Bolts, now down 0-1 in their quest for the Cup, will need a more sustained effort if it wants to make history this summer. Overall, Winnipeg is deeper than the Blues which could cause issues in a long series.

The San Jose Sharks come in behind the Flames as the two seed and drew the Vegas Golden Knights in their opening round matchup. This could help propel them to an upset. The price isn't great, but it's the most likely scenario. The Jake Muzzin move was nice but it doesn't plug all their holes. You'd have to go places like Minnesota, North Dakota, Michigan, Wisconsin, Maine, or Boston, Massachusetts to find the other winners. But the lack of goal scoring could be problematic. Matthew Barzal leads the team with 62 points while Anders Lee leads with 28 goals. Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are two of the best players on the planet, and it will be key for the Islanders to shut them down.

Strong defense but a goalie with a history of soft goals in clutch situations. "There is no one taking a [expletive] backward step here".

Luke Walton, Lakers Mutually Part Ways
The Lakers finished 37-45 this season, far short of the expectations after the team signed LeBron James in the offseason. The tumultuous 2018-19 Los Angeles Lakers season may be over, but the circus surrounding the club continues.

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NOTES: Duchene's four points set a team playoff record.

On the winning goal, Barzal brought the puck into the offensive zone on a 2-on-1 break, faked in front to draw Murray out and sent a backhand shot that bounced off the left post, but Bailey was there to knock it in. He has 99 points on the season and leads his club with 36 goals. The Bruins have the second best PPP in the playoffs at 25.9 percent but the Leafs have some serious goal scorers. "Things just happen so fast". Defensively, the Columbus Blue Jackets are allowing three goals per game and are killing 100 percent of their opponents power plays. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports2. Josh Anderson picked up a short-handed goal that tied it at 3 at 11:54. Otherwise, this team looks to be the biggest threat to the Lightning as they have the depth to match.

In the National Football League, in the last fifteen years, the team with the best record in the regular season has gone on to win the Superbowl four times. But why are they not the overwhelming favorites? But will that payoff last more than one series? "We have to be able to grind with them".

While the Capitals have all of the pieces in place to make a run for a repeat this season, including Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy victor Alexander Ovechkin, Carolina's done well in its three playoff appearances over the past 16 seasons, losing in the Cup final in 2002, winning the Cup in 2006 and losing in the Conference Finals in 2009.

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