The National Hockey League playoffs are underway. In my opinion, the NHL playoffs are the best playoffs in all of sports. 16 teams battle each other for the right to hoist the Stanley Cup, the best championship trophy in all of sports. After a grueling 82 game season, the top eight teams from both the Western and Eastern conferences engage in a best-of-seven series to advance and move closer to the Stanley Cup.
What makes the NHL playoffs the best in sports is the intensity. Every single goal is crucial and can swing a game and even an entire series in one team's favor. Also, goals are much harder to come by. Another thing that makes the NHL playoffs so great is the atmosphere. Usually, the home team gives out a t-shirt, towel, or both, of the team's color so that everybody in the arena is wearing the same color. It makes the crowd look great. This is done in the NBA too but the NHL crowd is much more passionate and loud. Also, the sight of 17,000 towels waving in the air after a goal is a great visual.
Another reason (and it's a big one) why the NHL has the best playoffs is overtime. When a game goes into overtime, you can just take everything I just said about the intensity and the atmosphere and multiply it by 100. Every single rush up the ice feels like a do-or-die situation. The next goal wins the game. Overtime playoff hockey is the most nerve-wracking experience in all of sports. The fans of both teams are on the edge of their seats hoping and praying for their team to score.
There's only one thing greater than playoff overtime hockey. And that is Game 7 playoff overtime hockey. In overtime of Game 7, the next goal decides the entire series. So take what I said about overtime and multiply that by 100.
The MLB playoffs are also intense and runs are just as hard to come by. Extra innings are great too but the difference is that baseball is such a slow game and it just can't match the intensity of hockey.
The NBA playoffs have the same format as the NHL playoffs but its severely watered down by lack of parity in the league. The first round and even second round of the NBA playoffs are just a walk-through-the-motions foregone conclusion. We already know which teams are going to be playing in the Conference Finals and NBA Finals. Also, baskets are very easy to come by and overtime isn't sudden death.
The NFL playoffs are intense and every score means so much, like hockey. Also, since it is only one game instead of a series, every game is game 7. But, that also works against them in that if the game is a blowout, a big chunk of your playoffs will be rendered boring. This was actually the case in this past NFL playoffs except for a few games and the phenomenal Super Bowl.
So in conclusion, the National Hockey League has the playoff system in all of sports. If you want to send your nerves on an ultimate thrill-ride you can tune into the playoffs right now on the NBC networks.