In case you haven’t heard, the NHL regular season isn’t quite over just yet and with a massive matchup between the Boston Bruins and New Jersey Devils being the marquee hockey game this weekend on television, maybe the folks at ESPN are a bit clairvoyant and just know who’s going to be in the Eastern Conference finals this spring. Of course, that might offend you if you’re a Rangers, Hurricanes, Lightning or Maple Leafs fan but a Bruins-Devils matchup late in the playoffs does sound intriguing.
Looking at the Bruins-Devils game.
ESPN and ABC are pulling out all of the stops to make sure that this game gets the key time slot with an 8pm eastern time puck drop. The Bruins come into this game simply as the key NHL juggernaut this season and have a chance to tie the all-time record for wins (62) and the number one NHL Power Ranking team just may accomplish this milestone. Led by goal-scorer extraordinaire David Pastrnak who has 57 goals (only behind the Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid) and a total of 104 points, the Bruins sit at 61-12-5 and dominate not only the Eastern Conference but the entire NHL this season. To add to their prowess, the Bruins are the top defensive team this season as well and have given up an average of 2.10 goals per game this season – the only team under 2.50 goals per game.
While the Boston Bruins are quite impressive and look like the team to beat, let’s not count out the New Jersey Devils just quite yet. Sitting in second place in the Metro Division and only one point behind division-leading Carolina, the Devils are simply an exciting team to watch. The Devils are a goal-scoring machine and minus shootout wins, they’ve outscored their opponents by 56 goals this year with team-leading Jack Hughes firing off 42 goals.
The Devils have a youth movement in place at the Prudential Center with Hughes, Nico Hischier, Jesper Bratt and Dawson Mercer all under the age of 25. This game should not only provide plenty of great hockey entertainment but could very well be a foreshadowing of the Eastern Conference finals come later this spring.