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Likely playoff format has the Penguins playing...

May 22, 2020, 9:45 AM ET [24 Comments]
Ryan Wilson
Pittsburgh Penguins Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
The league and the NHLPA are working towards figuring out how the league will return. The 24 team playoff setup is the one I’ve seen talked about the most. There have been other formats I’ve seen discussed the past few months as well. I’d be lying if I said I really cared all that much. Not because I don’t want to see hockey again, but because this is an entirely unique situation and one hopefully we never see again. The playoff setup is not the main concern.

The main thing I’ll be critical of is if it is safe for the players to return. It’s really the only thing that matters in this. There is a lot of money on the line and I can only imagine the urge to look the other way and take some shortcuts in returning to play. Get the health part right and you could have a 31 team single elimination March Madness tournament and I wouldn’t care. Get it wrong and it doesn’t really matter what they go with.

Here is what is being voted on by the NHLPA at the moment:

The interesting twist is that the top four seeds in each Conference will play each other during the play-in round to decide who are the 1, 2, 3, and 4 seeds. So Boston who was six points better than any NHL team this year could lose their #1 seed status depending on how those games play out. The second round is always a bear for the Penguins and this year will be again if they get out of the "play-in" round. They'll have Boston, Tampa Bay, Washington, or Philadelphia waiting for them. I think I'd rather play the Metro teams in this scenario.

As of right now it looks pretty certain the Penguins would play the Montreal Canadiens. It won’t be a seven game series and I don’t think it will be a one game series. I’ve seen the idea of three and five games thrown out there. I think five is the right number (ASSUMING THE PLAYERS ARE SAFE). If this matchup gets finalized I’ll go into some more detail about it then.

We should know more details by tonight.

Thanks for reading!
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