April 23, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson (23) celebrates scoring a goal with defenseman Keith Yandle (3) against the Chicago Blackhawks during the second period in game six of the 2012 Western Conference quarterfinals at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-US PRESSWIRE
The Western Conference Semifinals are set thanks to the Phoenix Coyotes' win over the Chicago Blackhawks, but in the Eastern Conference only one team has punched their ticket to the second round.
The Phoenix Coyotes became the final team to advance to the Western Conference Semifinals on Monday night, thanks to their six-game victory over the Chicago Blackhawks in the Conference Quarterfinals. With the win, they sealed the bracket for the second-round on the Western side of the NHL.
No. 3 Phoenix Coyotes vs. No. 4 Nashville Predators
Teams re-seed after each round in the NHL playoffs, meaning that the top-remaining seed always plays the lowest remaining seed and so on. The Los Angeles Kings may have knocked out the Presidents' Trophy winners in Vancouver, but their road gets no easier against the impressive Blues.
The Coyotes won the Pacific Division on the last day of the regular season, and that continues to benefit the club in the second round as they hold home-ice edge over the Nashville Predators. Nashville, for the record, finished with more points than Phoenix in the regular season, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.
The schedule for each series has yet to be announced, and that's in part due to the fact that the Eastern Conference Semifinals are completely up in the air. Only the Philadelphia Flyers have advanced to the second round in the East, while the Florida Panthers can eliminate the New Jersey Devils in Game 6 on Tuesday night. Should the Devils stave off elimination, they'll travel to Florida for Game 7 on Thursday night.
The Boston Bruins and Washington Capitals will play Game 7 on Wednesday night, and the Ottawa Senators travel to New York to face off against the Rangers on Thursday night in Game 7. Until then, it's a waiting game in the East.