The Stanley Cup Playoff First Round started Wednesday night, with five games; two Eastern Conference and three Western.
History shows that the NHL team that wins Game 1 has a best-of-7 series record of 467-214.
We were treated to 29 goals, one overtime.
Columbus Blue Jackets v Tampa Bay Lightning
The Blue Jackets scored four unanswered goals to defeat the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-3 in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference First Round Series.
Alex Killorn, Anthony Cirelli and Yanni Gourde scored for the Bolts, who had a 3-0 lead after the first period. Andrei Vasilevskiy made 22 saves.
Tampa didn’t lose a game when leading by three goals during the regular season. They also became the first regular season champions to lose their opening playoff game.
Nick Foligno, David Savard and Josh Anderson scored for Columbus, with Seth Jones netting the winner on the power play with 5:55 remaining.
Sergei Bobrovsky made 26 saves, including the final 17 shots faced.
Blue Jackets v Lightning – Friday, April 12 (7pm – CNBC)
Pittsburgh Penguins v New York Islanders
Josh Bailey scored 4:39 into overtime to give the New York Islanders a 4-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference First Round series.
Nick Leddy, Jordan Eberle and Brock Nelson scored for New York, and Robin Lehner made 41 saves in his first career Stanley Cup Playoff start. He’s come on twice in relief, both times against the Pens, whilst playing for the Ottawa Senators in the 2013 playoffs.
It’s the first Game 1 at home for the Isles since the 1988 Patrick Division Semifinals against the New Jersey Devils, which they lost in six games.
Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel scored before Justin Schultz tied the game with 1:29 left in the third. Schultz also had an assist, and Matt Murray made 29 saves for the visitors.
In seven postseason games against the Islanders, Malkin has 12pts (3g, 9a). Pittsburgh also defeated them in six games in the first round in 2013.
Penguins v Islanders – Friday, April 12 (7:30pm – NBCSN)
St Louis Blues v Winnipeg Jets
Tyler Bozak scored the tiebreaker with 2:05 remaining for the St. Louis Blues in a 2-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets in Game 1 of their Western Conference First Round series.
David Perron also scored for the Blues, and Jordan Binnington made 24 saves in his first start in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Patrik Laine gave the Jets a 1-0 lead in the first period and Connor Hellebuyck made 24 saves.
Blues v Jets – Friday, April 12 (9:30pm – CNBC)
Dallas Stars v Nashville Predators
Miro Heiskanen scored two goals for the Dallas Stars in a 3-2 win over the Nashville Predators in Game 1 of their Western Conference First Round Series.
At 19 years, 266 days, Heiskanen is the youngest defenseman in Stars history to score a goal in the playoffs.
Matts Zuccarello scored their third, and Ben Bishop made 30 saves for Dallas, who killed a holding penalty at 15:08 of the third period, whilst leading by just one goal.
Roman Josi and P.K. Subban scored for Nashville, who outshot Dallas 12-9 in the first period and are 0-9 in best-of-7 series after losing Game 1. Pekka Rina made 26 saves.
Stars v Predators – Saturday, April 13 (6pm – CNBC)
Vegas Golden Knights v San Jose Sharks
Martin Jones made 24 saves for the San Jose Sharks, lifting them to a 5-2 win over the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of the Western Conference First Round.
Brent Burns, Evander Kane, Tomas Hertl and Marc-Edouard Vlasic each had a goal and an assist, Joe Pavelski also scored, and Erik Karlsson had two assists for the Sharks in a rematch of the 2018 Wester Conference Second Round, which Vegas swept.
Pavelski was credited with a power play goal in the first period after Burns‘ shot deflected off the center’s face. He told media post game that he lost teeth and received stitches in the locker room after the goal.
Mark Stone scored twice, Max Pacioretty had two assists, and Marc-Andre Fleury made 28 saves for Vegas, who reached the Stanley Cup Final last season as an expansion team, but lost Game 1 of the conference final to the Winnipeg Jets.
Both teams combined for 83 hits and 56 penalty minutes. San Jose’s Timo Meier and Vegas’ William Carrier each had nine hits.
The Sharks are 13-7 all-time when taking a 1-0 lead in a best-of-7 Stanley Cup Playoff series.
Knights v Sharks – Friday, April 12 (10:30pm – NBCSN)
ALL TIMES U.S. EASTERN