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When do the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs begin?

We go over the start date for the 2023 NHL postseason.

David Pastrnak of the Boston Bruins looks on during the second period of the game against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena on March 26, 2023 in Raleigh, North Carolina. Bruins defeat Hurricanes 4-3. Photo by Jaylynn Nash/Getty Images

We’re into April and the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs are right around the corner. The final day of the regular season is set for Friday, April 14 with two games on the schedule. Chances are those two games won’t impact much on the standings (though the Colorado Avalanche could be playing for seeding). Either way, we should have the playoff field set before April 14 and we’ll know how the matchups shake out for the playoffs.

Let’s look at the start date for the 2023 postseason and some additional information on the playoffs.

2023 NHL playoffs start date

The first day for the 2023 postseason is set for Monday, April 17. As was previously mentioned, that would give the playoff teams the weekend before the first round begins. Let’s look at what the field could look like for the postseason.

In the Eastern Conference, we have the Boston Bruins, who have already clinched the Presidents’ Trophy for most points during the regular season. The Toronto Maple Leafs and Tampa Bay Lightning will almost definitely meet in the first round against as the 2 and 3 seeds in the Atlantic Division.

In the Metro Division, the Carolina Hurricanes are trying to hold onto the top seed with the New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers each close by. It’s more likely the Devils and Rangers face each other in the first round as the 2-3 seed matchup.

That would mean the Bruins and Hurricanes are awaiting who comes in the Wild Card, which should be the New York Islanders and one of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Florida Panthers or Ottawa Senators. Those three teams enter Friday, March 31 separated by five points in the standings.

In the West, things are all up in the air. We’ll start at the bottom rather than the top. In the Wild Card, the Winnipeg Jets are fighting off the Calgary Flames and Nashville Predators for the final spot into the postseason. The Seattle Kraken have a good enough cushion in the first WC spot, so should be locked in there.

In the Central Division, it’s the Minnesota Wild, Dallas Stars and Colorado Avalanche jockeying for position. All three are separated by three points. In the Pacific Division, it’s the Vegas Golden Knights, who are the only West team to have clinched a berth as of the end of March. The Edmonton Oilers and Los Angeles Kings are right behind Vegas and any three could end up winning the division. So both West divisions figure to come down to the wire.