Fire and flops: Six Stanley Cup playoff teams that are either impressing or disappointing


The first week-plus of the 2024 Stanley Cup playoffs has already provided much in the way of excitement and bone-crunching action. The average playoff game has featured 89.5 combined hits by both teams — nearly double the league average (45.5) from the regular season, according to ESPN Stats & Information.

With so much chaos, there are plenty of teams that have exceeded — or fallen short of — expectations already.

For instance, the defending champion Vegas Golden Knights have been mighty impressive, taking a 2-1 lead over a Dallas Stars team that had led the league in goal differential during the regular season. But on the disappointing side, the Toronto Maple Leafs have fallen behind 3-1 in their series against the Boston Bruins, and the Los Angeles Kings are in a 3-1 hole versus the Edmonton Oilers.

Let’s run through the clubs that fit into each category, based on their playoff goal differentials as compared with what we’d expect from their pre-series power ratings and their opponent’s (adjusting for home-ice advantage). We’ll also highlight a player who has contributed to the state of his team, for good or bad, in the playoffs thus far.

We’ll start with the positive side of things. Here are three teams that have impressed the most:

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Las Vegas News Magazine

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