Tax Day Playoff Thread: NJD/FLA, NSH/DET & PHX/CHI

US Citizens - your taxes are due today - except if you filed for an extension. Want to know when my taxes were done? February 2nd. (I'm an accountant.)

GAME 1: Florida Panthers at New Jersey Devils, 4:00PM on TSN, NHLN-US, RDS, SUN (HD), MSG PLUS (HD)

SBN Blogs: In Lou We Trust & Litter Box Cats

Series Record & Storyline(s): Diablos 1 - Gatos 1. This series has been relatively vanilla compared to the other ones. Some pushing and shoving, but no suspensions. The Devils can score goals, but keeping leads seem to be the problem. Martin Brodeur is getting up there in years and he seems to be losing a bit of his magic. There are nights where he can be unbelievable and others where he's good but not great. Where he and the Devils are struggling the most is on the penalty kill. According to NHL.com, the Panthers have gone 3-for-7 on the power play in two games. It's surprising the because the Devils lead the league in PK with an 89.6% success rate during the regular season.

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GAME 2: Nashville Predators at Detroit Red Wings, 4:30PM on CBC, NBCSN, RDS2, SPSO (HD), FS-D (HD)

SBN Blogs: On the Forecheck & Winging It In Motown

Series Record & Storyline(s): Shea Weber 2 - Henrik Zetterberg 1. The Predators did something that very few teams have done to the Red Wings this season - beat them at the Joe. The animosity for Weber is heard every time he touches the puck. Yet it was slowly quieted as the Preds distanced themselves in the goal column (helped by a Weber goal nonetheless). Pekka Rinne has been downright ridiculous, giving the Red Wings a hell of a problem in scoring goals. Luckily for Detroit, the magical hands of Pavel Datsyuk are getting hot at just the right time getting his second and third points of the playoffs in Game 3. I don't care for either of these teams, but I wouldn't necessarily mind seeing Nashville take out the Evil Empire. If they win tonight, they can do just that in Game 5 in Smashville.

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GAME 3: Phoenix Coyotes at Chicago Blackhawks, 6:00PM on TSN, CNBC, RDS, FS-A PLUS (HD), CSN-CH (HD)

SBN Blogs: Second City Hockey & Five For Howling

Series Record & Storyline(s): Desert Dogs 1 - City Slickers 1. You might be surprised to hear this, but there was a suspension in this series. Shocking, I know. Chicago's Andrew Shaw will be taking a seat over the next three games for blasting Phoenix goalie, Mike Smith (WHO?!), in the head. Smith was a down for a little bit after the hit and looked dazed when he finally got to his feet. He was well enough to finish the game, which saw him give up the game tying goal with five seconds left in the third and the game winner ten minutes into OT. Prior to the announcement of Shaw's suspension, Smith was listed by the Coyotes as a 'game-time decision'. Some see a conspiracy to get more games for Shaw, seeing as that seems to be Shanny's determining factor in the number of games the player will sit. I can kind of get behind this theory seeing as Smith was well enough to play the rest of the game. We'll see if he can make it through the entire game or have to hand over the reigns to Jason LaBarbera. Yikes.

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