The 1st round of the 2023 Ontario Hockey League post-period offered just about everything a hockey enthusiast could request for and then some.
There ended up three sweeps, three Match 6s and a Activity 7.
There was just more than an hour of extra time packed into eight games that essential it and there was a first between the Kitchener Rangers and the Windsor Spitfires.
In no way just before had an eighth seed upset a number a single seed in four-straight game titles. The Rangers done that feat on Apr. 6.
Spherical a person ended four days afterwards when the 2024 Memorial Cup hosts knocked off their I-75 rivals as the Saginaw Spirit took care of the Flint Firebirds in a seventh match. The video game successful intention was scored with beneath four minutes to engage in.
Now 8 groups keep on being in the quest to symbolize the OHL at the 2023 Memorial Cup in Kamloops, B.C., from May perhaps 26 to June 4.
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In this article are the matchups:
London vs Kitchener
The Knights and the Rangers just about every concluded a very first-spherical sweep on the same evening at about the exact same time. It took approximately 20 minutes from the conclusion of their game titles for the word “rematch” to be applied.
These two golf equipment achieved in the 2022 submit-time and the series went seven games and then necessary additional time. Mike Petizian’s winner at the 11:35 mark of OT ended things in Kitchener’s favour but Pavel Cajan’s 8 stops in time beyond regulation and 51 all round in Game 7 paved the way as #7 Kitchener upset #2 London.
Equally Petizian and Cajan are long gone but 21 gamers who played in that recreation are back for The Rematch.
Isaiah George and Logan Mailloux were also on the Knights roster but were injured previous 12 months. George is a question mark for the start of the collection this time simply because of an upper body damage.
The Rangers will be without the need of captain Francesco Pinelli for Games 1 and 2 due to suspension.
In aim the Knights Brett Brochu is variety a single in objectives versus common amongst goalies who have performed at least 3 playoff online games. Marco Costantni of the Rangers is amount two.
Costantini is selection 1 in preserve percentage. Brochu is number two.
Both equally golf equipment are rolling.
London took the period sequence winning five out of 6 game titles.
Assume the greatest-of-7 to be significantly, much nearer.
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Sarnia vs Saginaw
No crew benefitted from the Western Meeting spherical a person results additional than the Sarnia Sting. Instead of struggling with a group that experienced extra players to get a run in 2023 they get to fulfill a club that traded veterans absent to gear up for what finally turned a prosperous 2024 Memorial Cup bid.
The Sting ended up the most effective workforce in the OHL from the trade deadline by way of to the conclusion of the time. They went 17 straight games from Feb. 20 to March 25 without shedding in regulation. Sarnia was also analyzed just enough by the Guelph Storm in the opening round to give their some added edginess relocating forward.
Sarnia’s best 5 scorers in the regular season are their prime 5 scorers so considerably in the submit-period.
Saginaw isn’t accurately about to sign in excess of the collection and hold out for subsequent 12 months. The Spirit are a team that is certainly a calendar year ahead of agenda proper now but even with dealing away Pavel Mintyukov, Josh Bloom and Brayden Hislop they can give you matches.
They have just-turned-16-calendar year-outdated phenom Michael Misa and a rookie defenceman in Zayne Parekh who set a record with 21-aims in the regular time and they include people players in with Hunter Haight, Matyas Sapovaliv, Mitchell Smith and other veterans.
The Spirit are effectively-coached and have absolutely nothing to lose. Every minute of expertise now only feeds into future year.
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Ottawa vs Peterborough
The Ottawa 67’s had been the most effective crew in the OHL’s common time. The Oshawa Generals managed to spoil a 67’s statistic in spherical a single but which is about all they were being able to do versus Ottawa.
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The 67’s entered the playoffs with a report of 41— when they were primary a sport after 40 minutes. The Generals pulled off a 3rd time period 3-target comeback versus Ottawa in Game 3 and then won in extra time. The 67’s won the series in 5 video games on the backs of Luca Pinelli’s and Logan Morrison’s offence. Pinelli had 12 points in the five video games and Morrison experienced ten.
Ottawa is a really disciplined and extremely balanced group with the skill to engage in a video game any way their opponent would like.
The Petes swept absent the Sudbury Wolves in four game titles. Peterborough held a crew that averaged 4 plans for every activity in the typical time to just two objectives per video game in their opening spherical series.
The Petes have the knowledge of previous OHL Champions Avery Hayes and Gavin White and the activity breaking talent of Brennan Othmann together with best close goaltending from Michael Simpson. All of it will have to have to be at its best to upset Ottawa.
The 67s gained five of the 7 games amongst the golf equipment this yr including the last four conferences between the groups.
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North Bay vs Barrie
The North Bay Battalion look crafted for the playoffs. They are massive. They are actual physical. They have outstanding goaltending. And they engage in as a device. Receiving to their web is a whole lot like acquiring to the previous Timbit in the box in a wolf den.
The Mississauga Steelheads used round one particular from the Battalion taking pictures pucks from just about everywhere just hoping the capitalize on chaos. It bought a younger Mississauga group two victories ealry on but then North Bay modified and outscored the Steelheads 11-4 in the closing two games.
Matvey Petrov led the way offensively for North Bay. He scored 27 ambitions in the standard time but did not rating a one goal versus Mississauga but his ten helps are 2nd only to Brandt Clarke of the Barrie Colts.
Speaking of Clarke. He had himself a 1st spherical for Barrie.
The 19-12 months aged defenceman who began the year with the Los Angeles Kings had an astounding 17 points in five game titles. Clarke served a just one-sport suspension for a kneeing penalty and continue to potential customers the discipline by 7 points.
He can break up a play at a single conclusion and finish a hurry at the other seemingly on the very same change.
But he isn’t the only weapon the Colts have to throw at North Bay.
Ethan Cardwell experienced six aims in 5 online games in Barrie’s 1st round sequence victory about Hamilton.
And never forget the the Colts are the only workforce that receives major-time offence from their goalie. Anson Thornton scored into an vacant web in the last video game to send the Bulldogs to Brantford.
North Bay received five of the 6 games concerning the groups in the frequent time so Barrie will need to have Clarke and mates to keep warm to have a shot.
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