Updated league standings, potential first-round matchups
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Updated league standings, potential first-round matchups

Updated league standings, potential first-round matchups

The NHL’s Stanley Cup playoffs will begin in mid-April and the biggest question is whether the Boston Bruins can keep their spectacular play going through four rounds of the postseason.

The Bruins clinched the Presidents’ Trophy on Thursday night and have a chance to break the NHL record of 62 wins in a season. But which other teams will make the playoffs and what are the matchups in the first round?

USA TODAY Sports is here with everything you need to know about the NHL playoffs, including updated playoff brackets. Here’s a comprehensive look at the current NHL postseason outlook, including when the playoffs and the Stanley Cup Final are scheduled to start:

The Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs are projected to meet in the first round of the playoffs for the second year in a row.

The Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs are projected to meet in the first round of the playoffs for the second year in a row.

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Clinching scenarios for Friday, March 31

The idle Edmonton Oilers will clinch a playoff spot if the Winnipeg Jets lose to the Detroit Red Wings in any fashion.

Updated NHL playoff standings


(as of March 30 — complete standings can be found here. p-clinched Presidents’ Trophy, x-clinched playoff spot, y-clinched division title, z-eliminated from playoff contention)

Metropolitan Division

x-Carolina Hurricanes

x-New Jersey Devils

x-New York Rangers

Atlantic Division

p-Boston Bruins

x-Toronto Maple Leafs

Tampa Bay Lightning

Wild cards

New York Islanders

Pittsburgh Penguins

Currently out of playoff position

Florida Panthers

Buffalo Sabers

Ottawa Senators

Washington Capitals

Detroit Red Wings

Philadelphia Flyers

z-Montreal Canadiens

z-Columbus Blue Jackets


(as of March 30)

Central Division

Minnesota Wild

Dallas Stars

Colorado Avalanches

Pacific Division

x-Vegas Golden Knights

Edmonton Oilers

Los Angeles Kings

wild card

Seattle Kraken

Winnipeg Jets

Currently out of playoff position

Calgary Flames

Nashville Predators

St. Louis Blues

Vancouver Canucks

z-Arizona Coyotes

z-San Jose Sharks

z-Anaheim Ducks

z-Chicago Blackhawks

Eastern Conference playoff brackets

(as of March 30)

Boston Bruins vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

Carolina Hurricanes vs. New York Islanders

New Jersey Devils vs. New York Rangers

Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

Western Conference

(as of March 30)

Vegas Golden Knights vs. Winnipeg Jets

Minnesota Wild vs. Seattle Kraken

Dallas Stars vs. Colorado Avalanches

Edmonton Oilers vs. Los Angeles Kings

When do the Stanley Cup playoffs begin?

They’re scheduled to start on April 17, three days after the scheduled April 14 end of the regular season.

What is the tentative starting date of the Stanley Cup Final?

The scheduled starting date is June 3, though that’s subject to change. TNT will air the games in the United States.

Who won the Stanley Cup in 2022?

The Colorado Avalanche won for the first time since 2001. They defeated the two-time defending champion Tampa Bay Lightning in six games.

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When is the NHL draft?

The NHL draft is June 28 (first round) and June 29 (Rounds 2-7) at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. The NHL draft lottery will be held at 7 pm ET on May 8 among the 16 non-playoff teams or teams that acquired their first-round picks in a trade. Teams can move up a maximum of 10 spots in the two drawings. Only the bottom 11 teams will have a chance to draft generational talent Connor Bedard at No. 1 overalls. The Regina (Saskatchewan) Pats center led the Western Hockey League during the regular season with 143 points in 57 games.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: NHL playoff bracket 2023 updates: Standings, schedule for postseason