Four opening night games. Four wins for the four respective underdogs. Hmm . . . must be night one of the Stanley Cup playoffs. This happens every year folks, and it'll probably happen again on Thursday night when the other four series begin.
For whatever reason, it just seems like a given that the lower seed has an advantage in game one. Is it because they've often had to play "playoff hockey" to squeak into the playoffs? Is it because they are on the road and have fewer distractions? Is it because the favored team really did underestimate them?
I don't know the answer but I do know we see this seemingly every year and it does not necessarily mean much.
According to the website WhoWins.com, NHL teams who win game one on the road (like Colorado, Ottawa and Philadelphia) historically go on to win the series 50.7% of the time. They win game two just 33.8% of the time.
The news is quite a bit better for Phoenix, the only home team to win on Wednesday. Historical numbers favor the hometown preliminary round game one winner to win the series 73.3% of the time. They are also 62.9% more likely to win game 2.