Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Vegas, Philadelphia capture top seeds in NHL conference playoffs

Vegas, Philadelphia capture top seeds in NHL conference playoffs

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Alex Tuch (bottom) scores the winning goal against Colorado in overtime to give the Vegas Golden Knights the top seed in the Western Conference. AFP

Vegas, Philadelphia capture top seeds in NHL conference playoffs

Alex Tuch's overtime goal gave the Vegas Golden Knights a 4-3 victory over Colorado on Saturday and a Western Conference top seed in the National Hockey League playoffs.

Joining Vegas with the preferred paths in the Stanley Cup chase were the Philadelphia Flyers, who got two first-period goals from Nicolas Aube-Kubel in beating Tampa Bay 4-1 to capture the top seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Both winners completed an unbeaten run through seeding round play in the NHL Covid-19 quarantine bubbles, at Edmonton in the West and Toronto in the East, and became the teams to beat when the playoffs begin on Tuesday.

Tuch beat Avalanche goaltender Philipp Grubauer high to the far right corner for his third goal in as many games with 16 seconds remaining in overtime to give Vegas the victory.

“I was shooting short side all game so I thought I would change it up a little bit,” Tuch said.

Colorado’s J.T. Compher equalized with 62 seconds remaining in regulation time to force the extra period, only to watch as Vegas advanced.

The Golden Knights booked a best-of-seven opening series against the 12th-seeded Blackhawks, who have won the Cup in three of the past 10 seasons. They upset Edmonton in qualifying.

“The Blackhawks have a lot of Stanley Cup experience, a lot of top players and a world-class goalkeeper in [Corey] Crawford,” Tuch said. “So we’ve got to put a lot of pucks on the net.”

Colorado will face 11th seed Arizona, which ousted Nashville in qualifying.

Philadelphia 21-year-old goaltender Carter Hart made 23 saves to send the Lightning to their first bubble loss.

“We played really hard,” Hart said. “All the lines are rolling. All the D are rolling. We did a great job in there. We got in a lot of work. It’s showing right now.”

The Flyers, who were fourth in the East when the season was shut down, will open the playoffs against 12th seed Montreal, a shock qualifying winner over Pittsburgh after the Canadiens had the worst record of the 24 bubble teams.

Tampa Bay’s first-round opponent will be the winner of Sunday’s qualifying finale between Columbus and Toronto.

Sunday’s other games will decide the third and fourth seeds, with Boston playing Washington in the East and Dallas facing defending champion St. Louis in the West.

The Washington-Boston winner will meet the New York Islanders in the first round of the East playoffs while the loser gets Carolina in the opening round.

In the West, the Dallas-St. Louis winner will open against Calgary while the loser meets Vancouver.


  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    The Ministry of Health has issued a directive on the treatment of people who have tested positive for the highly transmissible Omicron coronavirus variant, following a suggestion from Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of January 21. The directive permits home quarantine for those who

  • Cambodia’s first ever anime festival kicks off Jan 22 at capital’s F3 centre

    Phnom Penh's first ever Anime Festival will bring together fans, artists, shops and other local businesses with ties to the Japanese animation style for cosplay competitions, online games, pop-up shops and more on January 22, with Friends Futures Factory (F3) hosting. F3 is a project that

  • Hun Sen gets 4th Covid shot, urges compatriots to follow

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and his wife Bun Rany on January 14 received their fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine and called on compatriots to follow suit as the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to spread in the community. This marks the launch of Cambodia's fourth-dose vaccination campaign,

  • Mr Pancake or M Crepe? Tasty by any title

    Crowds of people gather around a lone man with a mobile food cart every day at around 2pm in front of the Institut Francais du Cambodge to order what many say are the best crepes in Phnom Penh. To some – even to the man making

  • Fourth dose Covid booster drive jabs 43K in two days

    In the first two days of the fourth-dose Covid-19 vaccination campaign, more than 43,000 people volunteered to get the jabs, while over 4.6 million people have received a third shot. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said that fourth-dose vaccinations, which began on January 14 exclusively with the Pfizer

  • Singapore backs Cambodia's efforts on Myanmar

    Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong supports Cambodia in its efforts to seek a solution to the ongoing Myanmar crisis as the chair of ASEAN. Lee expressed his support during a meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen via videoconference on January 14, with the talks focused