We're only a single game into each conference final, but already some interesting statistics have been put up and trends continued for these Stanley Cup Playoffs.
If you had to pick a favorite at this point to win it all, the Tampa Bay Lightning
certainly would be a popular choice. It's hard to fathom that at one point they looked to be one of the first teams to exit the dance, but since falling behind 3-1 in their first-round series against Pittsburgh, they've reeled off eight consecutive victories.
Meanwhile, for all the struggles the Vancouver Canucks
have had putting opponents away this postseason (2-4 record in games when they could have eliminated Chicago or Nashville), they've been brilliant in series openers, winning all three and giving up just two goals in the process.
As the Lightning resume their series with the Boston Bruins
and the Canucks get set to continue their matchup against the San Jose Sharks
, here are five fast facts taken from Game 1 of their respective conference finals:
* While Tampa Bay remains three wins short of tying the all-time single-season playoff record of 11 straight victories, goaltender Dwayne Roloson
now is even with Hall of Famer Jacques Plante
for most consecutive wins by a goalie 40 or older. He can break that record Tuesday, with his ninth straight victory. Also, assuming Roloson picks up that ninth win at some point -- be it Game 2 or later on in the series -- he'll tie Dominik Hasek
for most playoff wins in a single season by a goalie 40 or older. Hasek accomplished the feat while playing for the Detroit Red Wings
* There aren't a lot of Bruins who will look back fondly on their Game 1 loss to the Lightning, but for Boston rookie Tyler Seguin
, it not only was his playoff debut, but also the game in which he tallied his first postseason goal. In doing so at age 19 years, 103 days, he became the fifth-youngest player ever to score in a conference final game, after Eddie Olczyk
in 1985 (18 years, 269 days), Dainius Zubrus
in 1997 (18 years, 334 days), Radek Dvorak
in 1996 (19 years, 76 days) and Pat LaFontaine
in 1984 (19 years, 87 days).
* In shutting down Boston's high-powered line of David Krejci
, Milan Lucic
and Nathan Horton
in the series opener, Tampa Bay coach Guy Boucher
relied heavily on his shot-blocking defensive tandem of Eric Brewer
and Mattias Ohlund
. Ohlund blocked three shots in the game and now has 39 for the postseason. He also had four hits. Brewer didn't have any blocked shots, but his total of 43 is tops in the playoffs, and he delivered three hits Saturday.
* Vancouver's streak in series openers actually dates back several years -- the Canucks have won their last seven Game 1s, a franchise record and the longest active streak in the League. Over the last 16 years, the only other team to win at least seven straight Game 1s was Detroit, which took nine in a row between 2007 and 2009. Since taking over as coach, Alain Vigneault
is 8-1 in series openers with Vancouver.
* Veteran defenseman Kent Huskins
, a member of Anaheim's championship squad in 2007, returned to the San Jose lineup Sunday after missing over two months with an upper-body injury. Huskins, who was appearing in his 43rd career playoff game, skated 20 shifts for 12:58 of game action.