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BSH Staff Predictions: Second Round, Eastern Conference

More predictions!

Tampa Bay Lightning v Boston Bruins Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/NHLI via Getty Images

We’re back with some more predictions! Last night we got our first game of the second round in the Western Conference, and tonight we’ll get our first in the East. Yesterday we also took a few moments to weigh in with our predictions on how those two Western Conference matchups will end, and now we’re pivoting back east! We’ve got Flyers vs. Islanders, and Bruins vs. Lightning, sure to be some fun series! And who will be the winners? We decided. Well, we try at least...

New York Islanders vs. Philadelphia Flyers

Kyle: Oh yay another series vs. a team that’s going to play an insufferable brand of hockey. This is probably going to look a lot like the Canadiens series by the end of it, but the Flyers do have the luxury now of facing Semyon Varlamov rather than Carey Price. No disrespect to Varlamov, who is a pretty damn good goalie in his own right, but Price is obviously on another stratosphere. I think the Canadiens series prepared the Flyers well for this test, and they take it in six games.

Drew: This is going to be another very close series for the Flyers, and I agree with Kyle that playing the Canadiens will have prepared the Flyers for this series. The Islanders may be better coached and disciplined, but they aren’t as fast overall as the Canadiens, and I think the Flyers could take advantage of that. I’ll take the Flyers in seven, though I’ll hope they get the job done in fewer games.

Maddie: Like Kyle kind of alluded to, I’m not really expecting to enjoy this series, per se, but I do expect that the Flyers will be able to win it. I’m hoping that the Flyers can look at what wasn’t working for them in the first round and make some changes to their game plan that will have them in a better position to succeed in this matchup. I don’t think it’ll be an easy win, but I like the Flyers’ chances in this series. Flyers in six.

Craig: I don’t have the most confidence in the Flyers pulling this out, but if you think I’m going to log onto this website and willfully pick a New York team to end our season then you’re dead to me. The Islanders are supposed to be a better version of the Canadiens (who the Flyers just beat) but are slower and don’t have Carey Price in net. The Orange and Black didn’t have a single performance in their series against the Habs where they played their game, and they may go the whole series against New York without playing their game, but they just rattled off four wins in six games despite that fact. I’m worried about Barry Trotz and whatever magic he’ll put out in this series, but let’s see how many goals the Isles rack up against goalies who aren’t Sergei Bobrovsky or the netminder formerly known as Braden Holtby.

Boston Bruins vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

Kyle: This series is definitely going seven, right? These were two of the best teams during the regular season in a top-heavy Atlantic Division, and both have something to prove. Boston is looking to get back to the Eastern Conference Finals for the second year in a row, and Tampa still has the chip of not winning a Cup with this group. These are two amazing teams and I wouldn’t be surprised if either one, but my choice is Tampa in seven setting up a rematch of the 2004 ECF with Flyers vs. Lightning.

Drew: In the end, I’m picking Boston in six games because I have a grand vision of the Flyers yet again dismantling Jaroslav Halak in an Eastern Conference Finals.

Maddie: This series, on the other hand, I think should be fun. These are two really good teams and I do think that this one could easily go either way. It really kind of feels like a coin flip, at this point. Like Kyle, I think this is one that’s going to go to seven games, and while I think the Lightning are going to be extra motivated considering how the last couple of years have gone for them in the playoffs, but my gut says the Bruins are going to pull this off. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong. Bruins in seven.

Craig: This is the toughest series for me to pick, but I’m sticking with Tampa Bay. I’ve been saying for a while I think they have changed their mentality towards team defense and they are loaded in terms of offensive talent. I also think the Lightning exorcised some demons by taking out the Columbus Blue Jackets, a team that put an embarrassing end to their 2019 postseason and had Joonas Korpisalo stealing goals from them left and right. It’s going to be a tight series no matter who wins, but I’m going with Bolts in seven.

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