Stanley Cup Playoffs Central: Bracket, schedule, game previews for the NHL’s postseason

Sports

The 2024 Stanley Cup playoffs are almost here! The NHL’s 32 teams are down to just 16 in the postseason, with the opening games of the first round set to begin Saturday.

Will the New York Rangers parlay their success in winning the Presidents’ Trophy to a championship — thus breaking the “curse” of that award?

Can the Vegas Golden Knights repeat, despite starting the postseason as the underdog in their initial series?

Read on for the full playoff coverage from every first-round series all the way through the Stanley Cup Final.

More: Playoff schedule
Megapreview
Lapsed fan’s guide
Wyshynski’s bracket
Top 50 players
Cup contender comps

First round

Atlantic Division

Regular-season records:

Panthers: 52-24-6, 110 points
Lightning: 45-29-8, 98 points

Leading scorers:

Panthers: Sam Reinhart, 94 points (57 G, 37 A)
Lightning: Nikita Kucherov, 144 points (44 G, 100 A)

Consensus pick: Panthers

Schedule: (FLA leads 1-0)

Game 1: FLA 3, TB 2 | Recap | Replay
Game 2: TB @ FLA | April 23, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2) | Preview
Game 3: FLA @ TB | April 25, 7 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 4: FLA @ TB | April 27, 5 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 5: TB @ FLA | April 29* | Preview
Game 6: FLA @ TB | May 1* | Preview
Game 7: TB @ FLA | May 4* | Preview


Regular-season records:

Bruins: 47-20-15, 109 points
Maple Leafs: 46-26-10, 102 points

Leading scorers:

Bruins: David Pastrnak, 110 points (47 G, 63 A)
Maple Leafs: Auston Matthews, 107 points (69 G, 38 A)

Consensus pick: Bruins

Schedule: (BOS leads 1-0)

Game 1: BOS 5, TOR 1 | Recap
Game 2: TOR @ BOS | April 22, 7 p.m. (ESPN) | Preview
Game 3: BOS @ TOR | April 24, 7 p.m. (ESPN) | Preview
Game 4: BOS @ TOR | April 27, 8 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 5: TOR @ BOS | April 30* | Preview
Game 6: BOS @ TOR | May 2* | Preview
Game 7: TOR @ BOS | May 4* | Preview


Metropolitan Division

Regular-season records:

Rangers: 55-23-4, 114 points
Capitals: 40-31-11, 91 points

Leading scorers:

Rangers: Artemi Panarin, 120 points (49 G, 71 A)
Capitals: Dylan Strome, 67 points (27 G, 40 A)

Consensus pick: Rangers

Schedule: (NYR leads 1-0)

Game 1: NYR 4, WSH 1 | Recap | Replay
Game 2: WSH @ NYR | April 23, 7 p.m. (ESPN) | Preview
Game 3: NYR @ WSH | April 26, 7 p.m. (TNT) | Preview
Game 4: NYR @ WSH | April 28, 8 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 5: WSH @ NYR | May 1* | Preview
Game 6: NYR @ WSH | May 3* | Preview
Game 7: WSH @ NYR | May 5* | Preview


Regular-season records:

Hurricanes: 52-23-7, 111 points
Islanders: 39-27-16, 94 points

Leading scorers:

Hurricanes: Sebastian Aho, 89 points (36 G, 53 A)
Islanders: Mathew Barzal, 80 points (23 G, 57 A)

Consensus pick: Canes

Schedule: (CAR leads 1-0)

Game 1: CAR 3, NYI 1 | Recap
Game 2: NYI @ CAR | April 22, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2) | Preview
Game 3: CAR @ NYI | April 25, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2) | Preview
Game 4: CAR @ NYI | April 27, 2 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 5: NYI @ CAR | April 30* | Preview
Game 6: CAR @ NYI | May 2* | Preview
Game 7: NYI @ CAR | May 4* | Preview


Central Division

Regular-season records:

Stars: 52-21-9, 113 points
Golden Knights: 45-29-8, 98 points

Leading scorers:

Stars: Jason Robertson, 80 points (29 G, 51 A)
Golden Knights: Jonathan Marchessault, 69 points (42 G, 27 A)

Consensus pick: Stars

Schedule:

Game 1: VGK @ DAL | April 22, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN) | Preview
Game 2: VGK @ DAL | April 24, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN) | Preview
Game 3: DAL @ VGK | April 27, 10:30 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 4: DAL @ VGK | April 29 | Preview
Game 5: VGK @ DAL | May 1* | Preview
Game 6: DAL @ VGK | May 3* | Preview
Game 7: VGK @ DAL | May 5* | Preview


Regular-season records:

Jets: 52-24-6, 110 points
Avalanche: 50-25-7, 107 points

Leading scorers:

Jets: Mark Scheifele, 72 points (25 G, 47 A)
Avalanche: Nathan MacKinnon, 140 points (51 G, 89 A)

Consensus pick: Avs

Schedule: (WPG leads 1-0)

Game 1: WPG 7, COL 6 | Recap | Replay
Game 2: COL @ WPG | April 23, 9:30 p.m. (ESPN) | Preview
Game 3: WPG @ COL | April 26, 10 p.m. (TNT) | Preview
Game 4: WPG @ COL | April 28, 2:30 p.m. (TNT) | Preview
Game 5: COL @ WPG | April 30* | Preview
Game 6: WPG @ COL | May 2* | Preview
Game 7: COL @ WPG | May 4* | Preview


Pacific Division

Regular-season records:

Canucks: 50-23-9, 109 points
Predators: 47-30-5, 99 points

Leading scorers:

Canucks: J.T. Miller, 103 points (37 G, 66 A)
Predators: Filip Forsberg, 94 points (48 G, 46 A)

Consensus pick: Canucks

Schedule:

Game 1: NSH @ VAN | April 21, 10 p.m. (ESPN) | Preview
Game 2: NSH @ VAN | April 23, 10 p.m. (ESPN2) | Preview
Game 3: VAN @ NSH | April 26, 7:30 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 4: VAN @ NSH | April 28, 5 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 5: NSH @ VAN | April 30* | Preview
Game 6: VAN @ NSH | May 3* | Preview
Game 7: NSH @ VAN | May 5* | Preview


Regular-season records:

Oilers: 49-27-6, 104 points
Kings: 44-27-11, 99 points

Leading scorers:

Oilers: Connor McDavid, 132 points (32 G, 100 A)
Kings: Adrian Kempe, 75 points (28 G, 47 A)

Consensus pick: Oilers

Schedule:

Game 1: LA @ EDM | April 22, 10 p.m. (ESPN2) | Preview
Game 2: LA @ EDM | April 24, 10 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 3: EDM @ LA | April 26, 10:30 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 4: EDM @ LA | April 28, 10:30 p.m. (TBS) | Preview
Game 5: LA @ EDM | May 1* | Preview
Game 6: EDM @ LA | May 3* | Preview
Game 7: LA @ EDM | May 5* | Preview

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