Fresh teams pave way for new breakout stars in NHL playoffs

When Rod Brind’Amour watched pregame exhibits in the course of the common season, he didn’t assume a lot thought was put into analyzing his Carolina Hurricanes.

“They’d take a look at the stat sheet they usually’ll say: ‘Oh, Sebastian Aho is an effective participant. Watch for him,’” Brind’Amour stated just lately.

Now that the Hurricanes are in the Japanese Conference remaining as part of a recent remaining 4 in the Stanley Cup playoffs, Carolina’s Jaccob Slavin is among the many breakout stars who at the moment are within the limelight. Boston’s Brad Marchand, San Jose’s Logan Couture and Brent Burns and St. Louis’ Ryan O’Reilly are a bit more established, however they’ve replaced the celebs of NHL playoffs previous like Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin who aren’t enjoying anymore.

Even with plenty of hockey’s family names gone, there’s still loads of star power and story strains for many who look slightly nearer.

“The more type of loopy the playoffs get, the extra interest is driven, and that’s really exciting,” NHL Network senior coordinating producer Josh Bernstein stated. “There’s so many great story strains happening in the playoffs proper now, and I really feel like it really piques everyone’s interest. It’s great for the game. “

Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen dazzled for 2 rounds, Columbus winger Artemi Panarin showed why he deserves an enormous July 1 payday, and Dallas goaltender Ben Bishop put himself back in the conversation among the many greatest within the league. But these guys are gone now, too.

Still in the playoffs, Couture leads all scorers with eleven objectives and 17 points. His 45 playoff objectives since making his debut in 2010 path only Ovechkin over that time, and his all-round recreation has him as a Conn Smythe Trophy candidate this yr.

“Logan Couture, if he’s not the highest two-method middle in the league, he’s in that dialog,” San Jose coach Peter DeBoer stated after his group’s Recreation 1 victory towards St. Louis on Saturday. “He plays a 200-foot recreation, all the time on the proper aspect of the puck, all the time making the fitting reads. When your centerman is like that, he drives the blokes around him to play as trustworthy a recreation as that.”

Couture isn’t driving the Sharks by himself, in fact. Brent Burns, who two seasons in the past gained the Norris Trophy as the NHL’s prime defenseman, is second within the playoffs in scoring and standing out with more than simply his offensive acumen.

“He’s all the time been a great defensive participant,” goaltender Martin Jones stated. “He’s all the time been robust to play towards in the D-zone. He’s an enormous guy, chews up plenty of ice. He swarms you.”

One of the Sharks’ largest challenges in the West last towards St. Louis is containing O’Reilly, who hasn’t put up the factors as much as he did in the common season, however was among the greatest gamers on the ice in Recreation 1. O’Reilly is a finalist for the Selke Trophy as one of the best defensive forward and stated he’s re-energized by this playoff run after missing the postseason every of the…

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