Pick 'Em: Capitals' First Round Opponent

The Faces of the First Round (US Presswire - Bruce Fedyck / Jason O. Watson / Ed Mulholland)

The drama of clinching a postseason berth finally behind us, the focus now shifts to the next bit of drama that awaits - discovering who the Caps will face in the first round. With one game left in the regular season, what happens tomorrow will determine into which of three potential playoff berths the Caps will slide (and which opponent they will face in the first round).

Here's a quick look at the three teams the Caps could find themselves facing next week, along with a little background:

New York Rangers

Scenario: Caps finish 8th

Caps 1-2 in the season series
November 25 vs. New York - Rangers 6, Caps 3
December 28 vs. New York - Caps 4, Rangers 1
February 25 @ New York - Rangers 3, Caps 2


GF GA PP Opp PPG PP% SHGA Times SH PPGA PK% SHG
Rangers 10 9 12 1
8.3 0 8 1
87.5 1

Players of note:
Henrik Lundqvist - 13-6-2, 2.72 GAA, .905 save % lifetime vs. the Caps (4-8/2.64/.912 with 1 shutout in the playoffs)
Brad Richards - 27 assists in 49 games against Washington
Marian Gaborik - shooting percentage of 12.5% vs. the Caps (and the best darn playoff assist you'll ever see)

******

Boston Bruins
Scenario: Caps finish 7th

Caps 3-1 in the season series
January 24 vs. Boston - Caps 5, Bruins 3
February 5 vs. Boston - Bruins 4, Caps 1
March 10 @ Boston - Caps 4, Bruins 3
March 29 @ Boston - Caps 3, Bruins 2 (SO)


GF GA PP Opp PPG PP% SHGA Times SH PPGA PK% SHG
Bruins 12 12 8 1
12.5 0 6 1
83.3 0

Players of note:
Zdeno Chara - 24 points, 5 power play goals and 91 shots on goal in 51 games played vs. Washington
Tim Thomas - 14-5-3 with a GAA of 2.46 and a .923 save % in 23 games vs. the Caps
Patrice Bergeron - 21 assists in 26 games against the Caps

******

New Jersey Devils

Scenario: Caps finish 3rd

Caps 1-1-2 in the season series
November 11 @ New Jersey - Caps 3, Devils 1
November 12 vs New Jersey - Devils 3, Caps 2 (SO)
December 23 @ New Jersey - Devils 4, Caps 3 (SO)
March 2 vs. New Jersey - Devils 5, Caps 0


GF GA PP Opp PPG PP% SHGA Times SH PPGA PK% SHG
Devils 11 8 16 2
12.5 1 14 0
100.0 1

Players of note:
Zach Parise - 8-10-18 in 25 games against the Caps
Martin Brodeur - 37-17-4 lifetime vs. Washington, with six shutouts
Ilya Kovalchuk - 25-30-55, 9 power play goals in 50 games vs. the Caps

Now that you've seen them all... who would you like to see the Caps play in the first round?

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