NHL playoffs: Here's your bracket for the 2014 Stanley Cup playoffs
The playoff matchups are all set in the NHL and the new format leads to a true bracket. Here it is for the 2014 Stanley Cup playoffs.
There has been some confusion on what the new playoff format in the NHL looks like, the players included. It's a little different than it was last season (and the many seasons before) but it's a return to the pre-expansion style with divisional matchups in the first two rounds, with the one exception of wild cards being able to cross over.
One thing that it does is give us a nice, clean bracket for the playoffs since there is no longer reseeding. The bracket is the bracket, you know in advance who the potential opponents are in each round.
As you can see above (via NHLplayoffbrackets.com), there is your bracket for this year's playoffs. The divisional pods are mostly all true to the standings with the one exception of the Stars playing with the Pacific teams (their divisional foes as recently as last season) with two wild cards coming from the Central.
The Bruins are the top overall team having won the Presidents' Trophy. What that means is that if they reach the Stanley Cup Final again, they will have home-ice advantage all the way. The Ducks are the top seed in the West over the Central champion Avalanche.
With the playoff field cut in half, the stakes keep getting raised
Green has led Vancouver's AHL affiliate since 2013
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Ottawa took a 3-2 decision to send Boston home, and Washington outlasted Toronto, 2-1