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2011 NHL Playoffs: Lightning And Bruins Must Wait To Get Eastern Conference Series Started

The NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs is a grind. It's game after game after game, and that's only if your team is lucky enough to stick around for very long and survive deep into the tournament. Rest is hard to come by, and anytime you can find some time to catch your breath, it is welcome. That is what the Lightning and the Bruins are currently enjoying before their Eastern Conference Finals series is allowed to begin.

Both teams swept their opponents in the last round, and now they have to wait for the series in the Western Conference to wrap up before they can learn their schedule, according to CSNNE.

With victories from both the Predators and Wings over the weekend, the Boston/Tampa Bay series continues to get pushed back. Now it looks like things might not be getting started before Saturday at TD Garden.

The concern in this situation is rust. We saw that how that benefited the Lightning in the last round. The Capitals beat the Rangers in five in the first round, and had to wait around for the LIghtning to finish off the Penguins. When they were finally able to start their series, the Lightning were in sync, while the Capitals were left trying to find what made them successful. It resulted in a sweep.

The good news is that any problems or benefits the teams might get as a result of the rest will be experienced by both sides, so it won't be a major storyline in the series. We don't know if it will be good or bad, but it will be shared.

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.