Get ready for Ovie, Toronto.
The Leafs now know their first round opponent, and it’s not an easy one. With a 3-2 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets, Toronto has finished in the second wild card position, meaning a first round series date with the best team in the NHL, the Washington Capitals.
#Leafs fall 3-2 to Columbus in regulation.
TOR will face Washington in the first round. Looking like Game 1 will be Thursday.
— Kristen Shilton (@kristen_shilton) April 10, 2017
Washington has a league-best 118 points, with still one game remaining to be played. The Leafs, meanwhile, finished the season with 95 points. That’s the most points by Toronto in 13 years.
We just narrowly missed seeing a battle of Ontario, as a single point on Sunday would have set up an Ottawa-Toronto matchup. A Toronto-Ottawa matchup is only possible in the Conference Final at this point, as the Leafs will compete in the ultra difficult Metropolitan Division portion of the bracket. The winner of Toronto-Washington is set to play the winner of Pittsburgh-Columbus.
The Leafs fared well against the Capitals this season, finishing the season series with a 1-1-1 record against the powerhouse Stanley Cup favourite.
This is the first time Toronto and Washington have ever met in the playoffs. Washington lost in the second round last season, while the Leafs have not made the playoffs since 2013.
The Maple Leafs have not won a playoff series since 2004, when they beat the Ottawa Senators in seven games.