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UFHL Playoff Preview: Higher Seeds Sweep, Advance to Second Round

UFHL Playoff Preview: Higher Seeds Sweep, Advance to Second Round

The Klein Cup playoffs didn’t provide much suspense in the first round, with all eight of the higher seeds advancing and only one relatively close matchup. The second round should be more competitive now that we’re into the conference semifinals, with the top four seeds facing off on both sides of the bracket.

First Round Results Legends Conference 1) Grizzlies defeated 8) Crypto Knights 2) Gators defeated 7) Stallions 3) Titans defeated 6) Duckman’s Domination 4) Monarchs defeated 5) Yetis Allan Conference 1) Defenders defeated 8) Dynasty 2) Strong Island defeated 7) Battle Hawks 3) Tornadoes defeated 6) Power Players 4) Rock Republic defeated 5) Snipers Second Round Matchups Legends Conference 1) Grizzlies vs. 4) Monarchs 2) Gators vs. 3) Titans Allan Conference 1) Defenders vs. 4) Rock Republic 2) Strong Island vs. 3) Tornadoes

Here is how the franchises stack up for the second round, with a roster comparison followed by a bit of analysis. NOTE: These eight playoff franchises are leasing players from the 15 non-playoff UFHL franchises (listed in parenthesis). Second Round Legends Conference 1) Grizzlies vs. 4) Monarchs

1) Grizzlies Forwards (9) Gabriel Landeskog — Colorado vs. Dallas (Blades of Steel) Nazem Kadri — Colorado vs. Dallas J.T. Compher — Colorado vs. Dallas Matt Nieto — Colorado vs. Dallas (Blizzard) William Karlsson — Vegas vs. Vancouver Nick Cousins — Vegas vs. Vancouver (Warriors) Jake DeBrusk — Boston vs. Tampa Bay (Blades of Steel) Sean Kuraly — Boston vs. Tampa Bay Jay Beagle — Vancouver vs. Vegas (Bombers) Defencemen (5) Samuel Girard — Colorado vs. Dallas (Brutes) Erik Johnson — Colorado vs. Dallas (Vengeance) Ryan Graves — Colorado vs. Dallas Mikhail Sergachev — Tampa Bay vs. Boston Nick Holden — Vegas vs. Vancouver Goaltenders (1) Robin Lehner — Vegas vs. Vancouver (West Coast Express) 4) Monarchs Forwards (10) Nikita Kucherov — Tampa Bay vs. Boston Brayden Point — Tampa Bay vs. Boston (Red Army) Tyler Johnson — Tampa Bay vs. Boston (Royals) Anthony Cirelli — Tampa Bay vs. Boston Alex Killorn — Tampa Bay vs. Boston Yanni Gourde — Tampa Bay vs. Boston Mitchell Stephens — Tampa Bay vs. Boston (Vengeance) Carter Verhaeghe — Tampa Bay vs. Boston Nate Thompson — Philadelphia vs. New York Islanders (UFHL Free Agent) Ross Johnston — New York Islanders vs. Philadelphia Defencemen (5) Travis Sanheim — Philadelphia vs. New York Islanders (Chilean Sea Bass) Justin Braun — Philadelphia vs. New York Islanders (UFHL Free Agent) Victor Hedman — Tampa Bay vs. Boston Miro Heiskanen — Dallas vs. Colorado (Bombers) Nikita Zadorov — Colorado vs. Dallas Goaltenders (1) Ben Bishop — Dallas vs. Colorado

ANALYSIS: This is going to be a great matchup between longtime friends and former university hockey teammates. It is another all-female matchup between Andrea Charanduk and Ashley Murray, who played together at the University of Regina. Andrea previously defeated Chericce Schulz’s Crypto Knights in the first round. Ashley’s Monarchs will present a bigger challenge, especially if Tampa Bay fares well against Boston and lights up Jaroslav Halak. The Monarchs are loaded with Lightning players, so that series is crucial to their success. The Grizzlies are heavy on Colorado players and will be hoping for a Colorado-Vegas matchup in the Western Conference final. The Monarchs have one extra skater in the second round, but this matchup will likely be decided by that Tampa Bay-Boston series.

2) Gators vs. 3) Titans