Juuse Saros

Free agent goalie market only makes Shesterkin, other values more precious

Free agent goalie market only makes Shesterkin, other values more precious
Mark LoMoglio/NHLI via Getty Images

Nothing can swing a playoff series quite like a red-hot (or ice-cold) goalie. When you’re charting the importance of a goalie, you don’t compare them to a two-way center or elite defenseman. Instead, you’re often asking how a goalie’s importance compares to, say, a quarterback.

Yet, for as important as goalies are, they’re extremely difficult to predict. Some may even call them “voodoo.”

Uncomfortably, you don’t necessarily “get what you pay for” with NHL goaltending. Even so, during the past two offseasons, it sure feels like the “floor” keeps rising on what you pay for NHL goaltending — whether that netminder’s track record is strong or not.

Among other things, these recent trends only make (relatively) reliable goaltending more precious, especially on team-friendly deals.

Even shots in the dark are costing at least $2.75 million per year

After wearing out his welcome with the Capitals, Vitek Vanecek received a new opportunity by way of a trade to the Devils.

Free agent goalie market only makes Shesterkin, other values more precious Samsonov Vanecek
Both of these goalies found new teams this offseason. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

For a goalie who experienced enough ups and downs to possibly be labeled something of a reclamation project, it’s striking that the Devils still paid up quite a bit for Vanecek: a three-year deal that carries a $3.4M cap hit.

At first, that at least feels a little steep. But then you realize that it more-or-less falls in line with the floor rising for the goalie market. Even goalies with limited track records mostly fetch $2.75M per year. Consider some of the mid-level signings:

  • Vanecek: three years, $3.4M cap hit (Devils).
  • Alexandar Georgiev: three years, $3.4M cap hit (Avalanche).
  • Kaapo Kähkönen: two years, $2.75M AAV (Sharks).
  • Anton Forsberg: three years, $2.745M AAV (Senators).
  • Technically, the Maple Leafs traded for Matt Murray‘s contract from the Senators. It doesn’t feel unreasonable to throw him in this group, however, as he carries a considerable cap hit (about $4.7M) amid muted expectations.

[Related: 2022 NHL Free Agency Tracker]

Then, add in some weightier investments, such as Jack Campbell‘s contract with the Oilers, and the Red Wings’ proactive Ville Husso addition.

For some, it inspires a reasonable response: all of that spending makes the Capitals’ investment in Darcy Kuemper feel like a better “calculated risk.”

Overall, not a bad point. Yet, with Kuemper’s age (32) and his history of injuries — most recently an eye injury that forced him to work on tracking — there’s enough risk there that Washington could regret the move. (Injuries and health challenges often get worse, especially for big goalies.)

Instead, a different point lingered. The select few NHL teams with excellent goalies (or, let’s be honest, goalies they think are excellent) at value prices should thank their lucky stars.

And, in cases where those bargains are running out soon, they really might want to use that as motivation to go for it. Consider a team-friendly but short-term goalie contract the netminding equivalent to a rookie contract. You may only get one window where a difference-making person is making team-friendly money.

The $5M-ish Goalie Club: Shesterkin, Demko, Saros

Igor Shesterkin: $5.6667M cap hit for three more seasons (through 2024-25)

Personally, Igor Shesterkin was my pick for best goalie in the world in 2021-22. Hockey Viz’s goalie saving charts provide one way to measure Shesterkin’s historically great season. Saving close to 50 goals above expected is truly ludicrous, and you can still make a Hart Trophy debate for Shesterkin. Once he got over a few early struggles, he was spectacular during the playoffs, too.

Free agent goalie market only makes Shesterkin, other values more precious Shesterkin Viz
via Hockey Viz

Considering how much the Rangers leaned on him (and figure to keep leaning on him), he may slip next year. Perhaps you don’t think Shesterkin’s the absolute best goalie in the world, tabbing the reliable machine Andrei Vasilevskiy. That’s perfectly fair.

For the Rangers, that debate is mostly noise. He’s an incredible steal at a bit less than $5.7M per year, and in the meat of his prime at 26 years old.

One can only guess how much Shesterkin will cost in three years. For the time being, the Rangers should try to make the most of this bargain (not to mention whatever’s left of the peaks for Artemi Panarin and Chris Kreider).

Juuse Saros: $5M cap hit for three more seasons

For the past couple seasons, Juuse Saros has stood alongside Connor Hellebuyck and Andrei Vasilevskiy as a workhorse goalie who combines the quantity of all of those starts with the quality of making tough saves. Last season, Saros and Hellebuyck were the only two goalies in the league to make 1,900 saves and face at least 2,000 shots.

By Hockey Reference’s Goals Saved Above Average metric, Saros was in select company the past two seasons: 23.0 GSAA last season, and 20.9 in 2020-21.

Free agent goalie market only makes Shesterkin, other values more precious Saros
Predators stretched Saros to the limit. (Photo by Donald Page/Getty Images)

That whole time, I couldn’t help but wonder if the Predators were riding Saros too hard. Whether it was fatigue or just bad luck, Saros suffered an injury at the end of the regular season, and was unavailable for the playoffs.

As it stands, there’s some room to worry about such a workload for a goalie who succeeds at least in part based on world-class athleticism.

Much like Hellebuyck, it’s impressive to note that value the Predators already extracted from their goalie bargain. Saros is a steal at $5M, still young at 27, and cheap for three years. Really, his ascent to the elite makes the Predators’ rebuild phobia easier to stomach.

Canucks found themselves a gem with Demko

In many of these cases, NHL teams are reaping the rewards from drafting and developing their own goalies. For all that’s gone wrong with the Canucks, they have some promising young core pieces, and Thatcher Demko may just provide the most bang-for-the-puck. (Though Quinn Hughes is a nice value, especially in a defenseman market that went pretty bonkers last summer.)

Demko’s merely 26, and if he’s truly as elite as he looks, his deal may end up being more valuable than others. That’s because his $5M cap hit lingers for four seasons (through 2025-26), one more than Shesterkin.

Demko stands with Vasilevskiy and Saros as a young goalie who maybe faced too much of a workload. As time goes on, that’s something for the Canucks to think about.

Most of all, they should avoid wasting a great opportunity where Demko’s getting paid less than he’s worth.

Short-but-sweet NHL goalie bargains

Connor Hellebuyck: $6.166M for two more seasons

You could argue that the Jets already got their money’s worth for Connor Hellebuyck’s six-year, $37M contract. He’s been one of the truly great workhorses in the NHL, propping up some abysmal Jets defenses.

Seattle Kraken v Winnipeg Jets
You don’t see Hellebuyck in the “backup tonight cap” often. (Photo by Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images)

But the Jets could end up haunted by the thought that they wasted having one of the best goalies in the world at such a team-friendly $6.166M cap hit. (The Jets have also not-quite fully exploited the value they’ve enjoyed with the likes of Mark Scheifele.)

At 29, Hellebuyck could very well deliver far above his cap hit for these remaining two seasons. With Rick Bowness being fixated on defense above anything else (at least in Dallas), it may be a more nurturing situation.

Really, though, this contract is part of a fascinating window for Winnipeg. Scheifele’s only under contract for two more seasons, and Pierre-Luc Dubois could set things up to walk as a free agent around that time.

If things don’t work out, that Hellebuyck contract could be a key part of a Jets rebuild. Either way, it’s already been a bargain for Winnipeg, and could very well be extremely fruitful for two more seasons.

Ilya Sorokin: $4M for two more seasons

For those who pay attention to stats along the lines of Goals Saved Above Average/Expected (there are quite a few variations of the general idea), two names rose as 2021-22 went along: Ilya Sorokin and Ville Husso. In Sorokin’s case, he built a credible argument to end up a Vezina Trophy finalist.

Amusingly, the biggest nitpick of the Islanders’ savvy, projection-based investment with Sorokin is that the savings are a bit brief. The 26-year-old’s $4M cap hit only runs for two more seasons.

Two other factors loom. For one, it remains to be seen if Barry Trotz’s departure makes life tougher for Islanders goalies. Beyond that, there’s the other Islanders goalie: Semyon Varlamov carrying a $5M cap hit dilutes some of the bargain of having a possibly elite young goalie at $4M.

To play “4D Chess” for a second: perhaps Varlamov eats up enough starts to limit Sorokin’s volume, and then the Islanders might extend Sorokin for another value contract? Maybe that type of thinking slips toward Charlie Kelly’s mailroom conspiracy board, but if nothing else, it’s at least a short-term boon for the Islanders.

Premium prices probably justified

Andrei Vasilevskiy: $9.5 million AAV for six seasons (through 2027-28)

Over and over again, I wonder if the Lightning will finally lean on Andrei Vasilevskiy so much that he “breaks.” Year after year, he defies those worries.

With Vasilevskiy, you wade through certain layers of nitpicking. Close to the time he signed his big, current deal, people pointed out that he mainly saved around the number of goals he was expected to. When wading into “best in the world” debates, one might point to relative hiccups, like so-so numbers in the Maple Leafs series.

Yet, as a whole, Vasilevskiy pulls off the remarkable feat of being a bargain at $9.5 million.

By racking up all of those miles — not just heavy in the regular season, but with three straight Stanley Cup Final appearances — I still wonder if the bottom might fall out. Such a thought could make that lengthy, $9.5M investment go “Just About Bob.”

Of course, there’s an obvious distinction even if Vasilevskiy starts to shew closer to Sergei Bobrovsky. The Lightning have already won two Stanley Cups with him.

And would it be that shocking if he just kept chugging along? I’d love to see Tampa Bay find a way for more backup help, but if that never happens, Vasilevskiy is still (somehow) just 27.

Other goalies who may or may not be bargains

  • Jacob Markstrom is tricky. At 32, Markstrom’s play could slip, and the Flames may take a serious step back in front of him. Still, his $6M cap hit looks more reasonable considering the far-less-proven goalies who are making comparable money.
  • What does the future hold for John Gibson? When he signed at $6.4 million, it seemed like a mega-steal. Yet, the 28-year-old’s results have been mixed-at-best the past three seasons. There’s talent there, but that $6.4M AAV through 2026-27 is something of a mystery. Maybe we won’t really get a true answer until he’s traded, or the Ducks make big improvements?
  • Jake Oettinger — currently 23 and an RFA — stands as a fascinating goalie contract situation to watch.
  • While playoff injury issues soured the end, both Frederik Andersen (32, $4.5M) and Antti Raanta (33, $2M) delivered serious value for a Hurricanes team that could be even better in 2022-23. Both are entering contract years, though, so those savings may be short-lived.
  • In surveying the NHL goalie trade landscape instead of free agents, James Reimer was one of my biggest recommendations. “Frequently above-average, sometimes quite good” might not be the sexiest thing in the world, especially for a 34-year-old goalie. Yet, with the way prices went, one year of Reimer at just $2.2M looked and looks really appealing.
  • Truthfully, I have no sweet clue what to expect from Ilya Samsonov. That said, there are worse bets than $1.8M for a 25-year-old whose show flashes of brilliance. (You know, like almost $4.7M for Matt Murray.)

In the end, it’s about making the best, most-educated guesses you can about a mysterious position

To reiterate: even the most promising-looking goalies on this list could flop. And it’s not outrageous for a deal that looks dicey (multiple years of Jordan Binnington at $5M, maybe even Bobrovsky?) could work out, short-term and/or long-term.

There are just so many variables that go into goalies succeeding, failing, or merely getting by.

That said, if recent seasons are decent indications of what’s next for at least the most established goalies, then Shesterkin, Saros, Demko, Sorokin, and others could improve their teams’ odds in enormous ways.

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    Igor Shesterkin wins 2022 Vezina Trophy

    Igor Shesterkin Vezina Trophy
    Jared Silber, Getty Images

    For most of the 2021-22 NHL season it seemed to be a foregone conclusion that New York Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin was going to win the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goalie.

    On Tuesday, that became a reality.

    Shesterkin was announced as the winner of the Vezina Trophy to cap off an absolutely remarkable season-long performance that saw him help carry the Rangers to their first playoff appearance in four years.

    Calgary Flames goalie Jacob Markstrom and Nashville Predators goalie Juuse Saros were the other two finalists for the award. The award is voted on annually by the NHL’s 32 general managers.

    Shesterkin finished the regular season as the league leader in save percentage (.935) and goals against average (2.07), while also recording six shutouts. He did all of that while playing behind a defense that was near the bottom of the league all season in terms of suppressing shots and scoring chances against.

    Here is a look at how the voting played out.

    There was an enormous difference in the Rangers’ overall success and record when Shesterkin was in the lineup versus when he was not, with the team going 36-13-4 in the games where he was the goalie of record (a 117-point pace over 82 games) and 16-11-3 (a 96-point pace over 82 games) in the games where he was not the goalie of record. Shesterkin’s pace would have been a Presidents’ Trophy level of play. The non-Shesterkin pace would have been a fringe playoff team.

    Even though playoff performance did not factor into the voting, Shesterkin was also outstanding in the postseason for the Rangers, helping to carry them to the Eastern Conference Final where they lost in six games to the Tampa Bay Lightning. He finished the postseason with a .929 save percentage in his 20 starts and was the biggest reason for the Rangers’ run. The Rangers’ defensive play in front of him was some of the weakest we have seen from a Conference Finalist in the salary cap era, which only further highlights Shesterkin’s dominance and outstanding play.

    Other NHL Award Winners announced earlier in the playoffs

    Jack Adams Award: Darryl Sutter, Calgary Flames
    Lady Byng Trophy: Kyle Connor, Winnipeg Jets
    Masterton Trophy: Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens
    Selke Trophy: Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins

    Predators are not close to contending for Stanley Cup

    Nashville Predators
    Danny Murphy, Getty Images
    1 Comment

    The Nashville Predators 2021-22 season ended with an expected thud Monday night as they dropped a 5-3 decision to the Colorado Avalanche, completing an opening-round four-game sweep. Nashville was always going to be a heavy underdog in this series no matter the circumstances, but when you took star goalie (and Vezina Finalist) Juuse Saros out of the equation it was pretty apparent that this was probably going to be a very, very lopsided series.

    It was.

    Colorado dominated all four games (even the Game 2 overtime contest was one-sided, only staying close because Conor Ingram played the game of his life), outscoring the Predators by 12 goals and owning a commanding territorial edge.

    It showed two things: That Colorado is a machine when it is clicking on all cylinders, and that Nashville is not even close to playing with the top teams in the NHL. That is a problem. It is also not a new problem.

    The Predators now have some pretty significant questions to answer this offseason with that knowledge in mind.

    The first is whether or not they can (and will) re-sign star forward Filip Forsberg. They decided to keep him at the NHL trade deadline and try to make the playoffs, knowing the potential risk of losing him in unrestricted free agency after the season. And that is fine. When you have a chance to make the playoffs you should do what you can to get there. But it is still a major issue to address in the coming weeks and months. In terms of cap space, the Predators should have enough to re-sign the 40-goal scorer, assuming he is willing and they are willing to match his asking price. Neither is a given.

    [Related: Predators first team eliminated as Avalanche sweep]

    The other question is who should even be making those decisions, and whether or not more drastic measures need to be taken from an organizational standpoint.

    The Predators have been in existence for 23 seasons, and during that time have had one general manager (David Poile) and only three head coaches (Barry Trotz, Peter Laviolette, and current coach John Hynes). That is an unheard of level of consistency and stability in a league and sport that does not typically have that. The teams that do have that sort of stability usually have a lot to show for it, or at least a championship or two.

    The Predators, quite frankly, do not. Even more, in 38 years as an NHL general manager Poile’s teams have generally been good enough to make the playoffs, but they are not typically good enough to do anything once they get there. His teams in Washington and Nashville have advanced beyond the first round of the playoffs just 10 times and past the second round just two times. It is not bad by any means, but at some point teams and fans start to expect more than just being there.

    The Predators have been around long enough and been in the playoffs enough times that they should be at that point of occasionally expecting more.

    But they do not seem capable of more as currently constructed. It is a very flawed team. Forsberg and Matt Duchene both had 40-goal seasons (the first 40-goal seasons in franchise history), but it is not a particularly gifted or talented team beyond them.

    They are also not a particularly young team or have a strong farm system. They are middle of the pack offensively, middle of the pack defensively, and generally middle of the pack across the board. At the midway point of the 2020-21 season the Predators looked like a team teetering on the brink of bottoming out, perhaps in desperate need of a rebuild. It was at that point that Saros went into superman mode in net and almost single-handedly carried the team to a playoff spot where they were bounced in the First Round by a better Carolina Hurricanes team.

    Saros was a difference-maker again this season. Goaltending can mask a lot of flaws, and the Predators have them. With even average goaltending the Predators probably do not even sniff the playoffs. Yes, the goalie is part of the team and plays a major role in the success or failure of it. But that one aspect can only take you so far.

    The Predators are now facing the prospect of potentially losing Forsberg, and hoping that players like Duchene and Roman Josi can repeat their 2021-22 performances next season (and neither is a given) just to get back to this same level. A level that was not anything close to good enough, which has been the story of this franchise for the better part of its existence with no end in sight. It might finally be time for that long-awaited rebuild because they are not getting any closer to a Stanley Cup at the moment.

    Vezina Trophy: Markstrom, Saros, Shesterkin are 2021-22 finalists

    Jacob Markstrom of the Calgary Flames, Juuse Saros of the Nashville Predators, and Igor Shesterkin of the New York Rangers have been voted as the three finalists for the 2021-22 Vezina Trophy. The award is given to the goaltender “adjudged to be the best at this position.”

    The Vezina Trophy is voted on by the NHL’s 32 general managers at the end of the regular season.

    Marc-Andre Fleury, then of the Vegas Golden Knights, was last season’s winner.

    The 2021-22 NHL Award winners will be revealed during the Conference Finals and Stanley Cup Final.

    [NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2022 First Round schedule, TV info]

    The case for Jacob Markstrom: No goaltender recorded more shutouts this season than Markstrom’s nine. In helping the Flames to the Pacific Division title, he helped them to 37 wins in 3,695:50 total minutes played. Markstrom was fifth in even strength save percentage (.926) and goals saved above average (17.90), per Natural Stat Trick. His play helped Calgary finish third in the running for the William Jennings Trophy for fewest goals allowed. He is also the looking to become only the second goalie in franchise history win the award, following Miikka Kiprusoff in 2005-06.

    The case for Juuse Saros: Missed mightily during their First Round series against Colorado and one of the big reasons for Nashville’s strong regular season, Saros was a part of 38 wins, posting four shutouts in the process in an NHL-best 3,931:23 of total ice time. His .927 ESSV% was good for fourth in the league while his 21.55 GSAA also saw him fourth among all goaltenders. He also finished second overall in saves (1,934). He is attempting to join Pekka Rinne as the only Vezina winners in franchise history.

    The case for Igor Shesterkin: A potential Hart Trophy finalist, the Rangers goaltender won 36 of his 52 starts and recorded six shutouts. He led the NHL in ESSV% (.934) and GSAA (26.38). He also posted an .866 high-danger save percentage at even strength, which was only behind llya Sorokin of the New York Islanders. Shesterkin could become the third Vezina winner in franchise history, joining Henrik Lundqvist and John Vanbiesbrouck, since the NHL adopted the current criteria for the award in 1981-82.

    Finalists for the 2021-22 Calder Trophy, which is voted on by the Professional Hockey Writers Association, will be announced on Wednesday.

    NHL Award finalists announcement schedule:

    Norris Trophy: Victor Hedman, Roman Josi, Cale Makar
    Wednesday, May 11: 
    Calder Memorial Trophy
    Thursday, May 12: Hart Memorial Trophy
    Friday, May 13: Ted Lindsay Award
    Monday, May 16: Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy
    Tuesday, May 17: Frank J. Selke Trophy
    Wednesday, May 18: Lady Byng Memorial Trophy
    Thursday, May 19: Jack Adams Award
    Friday, May 20: King Clancy Memorial Trophy


    Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

    The Wraparound: Panthers have reason for concern

    The Wraparound is your daily look at the 2022 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs. We’ll break down the NHL playoff games today with the all-important television information.

    • Catch up with all of Sunday’s Stanley Cup playoff action with the NHL Rink Wrap right here

    Brad Marchand had a gigantic game for the Bruins on Sunday with a five-point effort to help them even their series with the Hurricanes at two games apiece. 

    • The Blues made a goalie switch for their series against the Wild. 

    This year is supposed to be different for the Florida Panthers. This is the team that is supposed to change the narrative of the franchise and help it find real postseason success for the first time since its miracle run to the 1996 Stanley Cup Final, which remains the last time the franchise actually won a playoff series.

    The Panthers finished the 2021-22 regular season with the league’s best record, claiming its first Presidents’ Trophy in franchise history, and became the first team in 25 years to average more than four goals per game over an 82-game season. On top of that, it came into the playoffs looking like an absolute wagon by winning 23 of 28 games (23-4-1) since the start of March.

    They entered the playoffs as heavy favorites against the Washington Capitals in their First Round series and were considered a near lock to move on to at least the Second Round.

    Nobody told that to the Capitals.

    Florida enters Game 4 on Monday night not only facing a 2-1 deficit, but also looking like a team that has some significant questions and concerns to deal with, having been outplayed for most of the first three games of the series.

    [NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2022 First Round schedule, TV info]

    As good as the Panthers were during the regular season there were still a handful of red flags that seemed like they could show up in the playoffs to cause some problems. For starters, the Panthers are a team that generates a lot of their offense off of the rush. That does not always lend itself to success in the playoffs. They also are not an outstanding team defensively, while also having a pretty significant question mark in goal.

    High scoring teams that are not great defensively and have sketchy goaltending situations are typically one of the first types of teams to get upset in the playoffs. The first three games of this series have not done much to change that narrative. The Panthers have not been able to take advantage of the Capitals in transition, while Washington has done an excellent job locking down the neutral zone and pressuring Florida’s defense. Sergei Bobrovsky had a strong start through the first two games, but started to show some cracks in Washington’s 6-1 Game 3 win on Saturday. These are not concerns that you can just simply fix at this point.

    Even though Washington is the eighth playoff team in the Eastern Conference this is no pushover matchup. The Capitals not only finished the regular season with more than 100 points in the standings, this is a seasoned, veteran team that has been through everything there is to experience in the playoffs. They have seen it all, and there is not anything that is going to surprise, scare, or intimidate them. They are not going to be rattled at the first sight of adversity. We do not know that quite yet about this Panthers team.

    We might soon find out about that, though, because all of the pressure in this series rests with them right now. They have probably already lost more games than most people expected them to lose in the series and they are facing the potential for a 3-1 series deficit if they do not fix things on Monday night in Washington.


    Game 4: Florida Panthers at Washington Capitals, 7 p.m. ET — TBS (WSH leads 2-1): If Ilya Samsonov can build on his Game 3 performance and give the Capitals another strong goaltending performance they could push the Panthers to the brink of elimination when the series shifts back to Florida on Wednesday. The Capitals look like a team that still has some fight even though it is one of the older teams in the league. The Panthers need to find that offense that dominated the NHL during the regular season.

    Game 4: New York Rangers at Pittsburgh Penguins, 7 p.m. ET — ESPN (PIT leads 2-1): This series has been wild so far with a triple overtime game, a third string goalie, and that wild Game 3 on Saturday. The Penguins got some depth scoring on Saturday, while Sidney Crosby‘s line has been absolutely dominant so far in the playoffs. After scoring just four goals in four games against Igor Shesterkin and the Rangers during the regular season, the Penguins have already scored 10 goals against Shesterkin and chased him from a game in the first three games of this series. You should probably expect Shesterkin to be better in this game.

    Game 4: Colorado Avalanche at Nashville Predators, 9:30 p.m. ET — ESPN (COL leads 3-0): The Avalanche have a chance to be the first team to advance to the Second Round if they can beat Nashville and complete the First Round sweep. Given the fact that Nashville does not have Juuse Saros that result probably would not be a major shock. The big question for Colorado right now is going to be the availability of Darcy Kuemper, who was injured in the Game 3 win.

    Game 4: Calgary Flames at Dallas Stars, 9:30 p.m. ET — TBS (DAL leads 2-1): This has been one of the more surprising series so far with the Stars jumping out to an early 2-1 series lead and taking home-ice advantage away from the Flames so far. Jake Oettinger has been outstanding in net for Dallas, while Joe Pavelski has been taking over offensively already scoring three of the Stars’ first six goals in the series. That also gives you an idea of what this series has been about. The Stars have scored only six goals in the first three games of the series and still lead the series 2-1 heading into Game 4.


    Game 5: Boston Bruins at Carolina Hurricanes, 7 p.m. ET — ESPN (Series tied 2-2)
    Game 5: Tampa Bay Lightning at Toronto Maple Leafs, 7:30 p.m. ET — ESPN2 (Series tied 2-2)
    Game 5: St. Louis Blues at Minnesota Wild, 9:30 p.m. ET — ESPN (Series tied 2-2)
    Game 5: Los Angeles Kings at Edmonton Oilers, 10 p.m. ET — ESPN2 (Series tied 2-2)

    PHT’s 2022 Stanley Cup previews
    Maple Leafs vs. Lightning

    Hurricanes vs. Bruins
    • Penguins vs. Rangers
    • Panthers vs. Capitals
    Blues vs. Wild
    • Avalanche vs. Predators
    Oilers vs. Kings
    Flames vs. Stars

    NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2022 schedule, TV info
    First Round, Stanley Cup predictions
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    Why your team will (and will not) win the Stanley Cup