With the Ottawa Senators’ dismantling of the Canadiens in 5 games on Thursday, they will have to wait at least until Saturday before their second round opponent will be determined. It could be as late as Monday night, depending on how things progress over the next couple of days.
It looks like it will be the top seeded Pittsburgh Penguins, who seem to have their goaltending situation figured out in enough time to knock off the Islanders on Saturday, leading 3 games to 2.
If the Islanders should pull off the upset by beating the powerful Pens in two straight games, the next likeliest opponent would be the Bruins, who enter Friday leading 3 games to 1 with game 5 being at home in Boston. There is an outside shot that they could play Toronto if they can win 3 straight against Boston AND Pittsburgh falls to the Islanders AND the Capitals beat the Rangers. They would play the Rangers if The Islanders and the Capitals both fall in their respective series’. The only teams they cannot play are the Capitals and the Islanders.
Either way, the Senators have a day or so to bask in the glory of being the first Eastern Conference team to advance to the next round, and a couple of days off before they can really start preparing for their potential opponent. I would put the chances of playing the Penguins at about 90% so that is a safe bet.