NHL Playoffs is also known as the Stanley Cup playoffs is a postseason tournament organized by National Hockey League (NHL) is a path to the Stanley Cup Finals to determine the league champion. Here we learn how the 2023 NHL Playoffs do work.
Currently, the NHL Playoffs period of four rounds of the best of the seven series. The series competition format is a 2-2-1-1-1 format. This implies that a team that has a home-ice advantage will host games 1, 2, 5, and 7. The opponents, on the other hand, are going to host games 3, 4, as well as 6. Games such as 5, 6, and 7 are not compulsory as they are played when it becomes necessary to do so.
The format is such that each club from each of the conferences would qualify for that playoffs. A new format was introduced in the year 2014. According to that new format, each team that occupies first, second, as well as third places in each of the four divisions would qualify for that playoff automatically.
Besides, two more teams from each of the participating conferences irrespective of the division they belong to would qualify for that playoffs once they have the highest points outside those teams that have already qualified for the playoffs. This category of teams is called wild cards. This is because they do not have any divisional alignments. It is possible that out of the two conferences that are participating that one may have a greater number of teams than the others. One division within a conference can produce up to five teams in that postseason competition while the other could have a smaller number of teams.
During the playoffs, especially the first stage of it, the competing teams are divided into two different brackets. The bracket is the top three divisional team qualifiers, as well as one of the wild cards. The lower seed of the wild card will face the division winner that has the best record, while the other second card will be made to encounter the other division winner. The two wild cards are de facto number four seeds because they cannot belong to the same bracket.
The remaining two series would then face the second as well as the third-place teams that come from these divisions. After the first stage, the winners of the first round would be made to get to the next stage of that competition. The seeding in that second round is such that the top qualifiers would be made to face the least performing of the seed. The winners of the stage would then move to the conference finals. The conference finals would then move to the two conference finals, while the final winners would then encounter each other in the Stanley Cup final competition.
When there are ties at the end of the regular season, the deadlock would be resolved following a seven protocol that was agreed on.
- One of the protocols is based on the greater number of regulations that are won only. This is to commence from the 2019 to 2020 season.
- The second of that protocol is based on the number of regulations as well as overtime won, and this does not include shootouts. This was introduced in the year 2010.
- The third of that protocol is the total wins which must not include shootouts.
- This is based on the greater number of points that the club earns in a competition that involved tied clubs. There are two articles here.
- The next one is the higher differentials that exist between goals for as well as goals scored during that season.
- When teams are tied on the regulation wins, overtime wins as well as regulation, total wins, and points scored, which must not include points accumulated during the first home game.
- The final protocol is based on the higher number of home games between the clubs. This includes the regular, differential as well as season goals, and so on.
Moreover, this must take into account the overtime rules. This involves continuous play until there is sudden death. The overtime is based on the 20-minute five-on-five periods till a winner emerges.