So many questions in the East!

So many questions in the East!

One month from the end of the schedule, we already know the eight teams that will make the playoffs in the Eastern Conference, but there are still many questions in net. Let’s see how it plays out.

ATLANTIC DIVISION

Florida Panthers

Sergei Bobrovsky (13-23/3.24/.899 in the playoffs) has come back this season, but he still raises doubts. Eleventh in our standings, he’s not in the shape of a two-time Vezina Trophy winner, but the Panthers are so solid he won’t need to work miracles to win. He has already consulted a sports psychologist for his failures in the playoffs, and if it is a good step to improve, it is worrying if it is a question of curing a lack of confidence. His record in March is interesting (5-0-0/2.17/.920). If necessary, coach Andrew Brunette will be able to trust young Spencer Knight, who seems to be a special goalkeeper.

Tampa Bay Lightning

With 81 playoff games of experience, including 49 wins, two Stanley Cups and a Conn-Smythe Trophy, Andrei Vasilevskiy (49-29/2.24/.924 in the playoffs) is the king and he knows the tobacco. He’s probably the only goalkeeper in the East who doesn’t raise doubts. His assistant, Brian Elliott (17-26/2.72/.904), has more playoff experience than any other goaltender in the East except Frederik Andersen.

Toronto Maple Leafs

With a rib injury, Jack Campbell (3-4/1.81/.934 in the playoffs) hasn’t played since March 8, but he’s close to a comeback. He was dominant during the first half of the calendar, but it went downhill from mid-January. His injury may have been a mental blessing. He looked like a guard who was afraid of failing and he beat himself up in the public square. After an absence of two or three weeks, the pleasure of playing should replace the anxiety that gnawed at him and could revive him. The Leafs need it. Petr Mrazek (12-15/2.43/.911 in the playoffs) is just a plan B.

Boston Bruins

For the Bruins, Jeremy Swayman (0-1/3.23/.667 in the playoffs) and Linus Ullmark don’t have postseason experience. Swayman, 14and in the standings, got the title of number one, but he has everything to prove. He wins and he shows great consistency. It’s encouraging.

METROPOLITAN DIVISION

Carolina Hurricanes

Andersen (27-23/2.55/.916 in the playoffs) has experience, but he hasn’t won a series in his five-year reign in Toronto. He should receive better protection with the Hurricanes. He currently has the best average in the league (2.07). His partner, Antti Raanta (0-1/3.59/.846 in the playoffs), is having a good time. A great option for coach Rod Brind’Amour.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Fourth in our ranking, Tristan Jarry is having his best season and he has clearly moved to another level. He has little experience in the spring (2-5/2.90/.894), but Sidney Crosby’s gang have every reason to believe in him. He still has to live up to expectations.

New York Rangers

It’s been more difficult for a few weeks for Igor Shesterkin, but he still dominates our rankings with the best save percentage in the NHL (.936). Only in Tampa Bay would he not be the number one goaltender…and then again. A phenomenon.

Washington Capitals

Capitals goaltenders have only four career playoff games. Vitek Vanecek is taking control from Ilya Samsonov and is having a great March (7-2-0/2.66/.920).

The good news for all these keepers is that they have a month left to polish their game.


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