The final matchups of the first round have been decided. With the Avalanche earning a 5-1 win over Los Angeles Thursday night, the Avalanche have won the Presidents’ Trophy and secured the first seed in the West Division. That means Colorado will play against St. Louis in the first round while Vegas will face Minnesota.
With those games in the books, every team has now completed their schedule except the North Division, though even there we know that Toronto will face Montreal and Edmonton will face Winnipeg.
The final regular season game won’t be until May 19, but the playoffs will nevertheless start on May 15. In fact, in an extra bit of weirdness, Edmonton, who will be in the playoffs, will play in their last postseason game just a few hours before the first postseason series will begin.
That aside, the first round will include some great matchups. We’ve already previewed the East Division and the Central Division. With the West Division now finalized, you can expect that preview out soon too.
ST. LOUIS 7 MINNESOTA 3
David Perron helped fuel the Blues’ comeback with two goals and an assist. He has 19 goals and 58 points in 56 contests.
Jordan Binnington stopped 17 of 20 shots last night. As mentioned above, all three of the goals he allowed were scored in the first period. He faced 11 shots in those first 20 minutes.
Kaapo Kahkonen saved just 20 of 27 Blues shots. He has a 16-8-0 record, 2.88 GAA, and .902 save percentage in 24 games.
CALGARY 4 VANCOUVER 1
The Canucks’ lone goal was scored by Matthew Highmore. It was his first goal and fifth point in 38 games.
Thatcher Demko stopped 24 of 28 shots on Thursday. He dropped to 14-18-1 with a 2.93 GAA and .912 save percentage in 33 starts.
Matthew Tkachuk scored a goal and registered an assist for the Flames. He has 12 goals and 39 points in 53 games.
Calgary also got a goal and an assist from Elias Lindholm. He’s up to 18 goals and 45 points in 53 contests.
Jacob Markstrom turned aside 24 of 25 Canucks shots. He’s 20-19-2 with a 2.62 GAA and .906 save percentage in 41 starts.
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COLORADO 5 LOS ANGELES 1
Tyson Jost scored a pair of goals, including the game winner. That gives him seven goals and 17 points in 54 games.
Andre Burakovsky scored a goal and registered an assist for Colorado. He has 19 goals and 44 points in 53 contests.
Jonas Johansson stopped 21 of 22 shots last night. He has allowed two or fewer goals in five of his last six starts.
At the other end of the ice, Troy Grosenick saved 38 of 43 shots. He’s 1-1-0 with a 3.00 GAA and .922 save percentage in two games.
Sean Walker provided the Kings’ lone goal. It was his fifth marker and 18th point in 47 contests.