The Blue Jackets defeated the Panthers Saturday night, securing that they can finish no lower than the first wild card spot and locking the Red Wings into the second wild card spot. As such, the top-seeded Bruins will play the Red Wings in the opening round of the Stanley Cup  playoffs.
The Red Wings, who have made the playoffs in 23 straight games, are the most difficult matchup of the teams the B’s might have faced in the first round (with the Blue Jackets and Flyers being the others). Detroit is the only team that has beaten Boston three times in regulation this season, as the B’s went 1-3-0 against the Wings this season.
The series is expected to begin Thursday at TD Garden. It’s likely that Game 2 would then be Saturday or Sunday before the series shifts to Detroit for Games 3 and 4.
This marks the eighth time the Bruins and Red Wings in the postseason, though you probably don’t remember the most recent meeting. That came back in 1957, when the Bruins beat Detroit in the semifinals in five games.
The series will also feature a pair of siblings clashing, as Bruins forward Reilly Smith will play against his brother, Red Wings defenseman Brendan Smith.
The Lightning and Canadiens will face one another in the first round, with the winner of the Boston-Detroit series facing the winner of that series.
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