The second round of the 2023 Stanley Cup playoffs was perhaps less shocking than the first, with two division winners (the Vegas Golden Knights and Carolina Hurricanes) making it through, along with the Central Division’s No. 2 seed Dallas Stars, and the Florida Panthers, whose Cinderella run continues after being the final team to qualify for the postseason.

We’re now on to the conference final round, beginning tonight with Hurricanes-Panthers (8 p.m. ET, TNT) and Friday night with Golden Knights-Stars (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN/ESPN+).

Which clubs will make it to the Stanley Cup Final? Here are the picks from the extended ESPN hockey family:

Jump ahead:

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Eastern Conference

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Sean Allen: Panthers in six
Brian Boucher: Panthers in six
John Buccigross: Panthers in five
Ryan Callahan: Panthers in seven
Cassie Campbell-Pascall: Hurricanes in six
Sachin Chandan: Panthers in six
Chris Chelios: Panthers in six

Ryan S. Clark: Hurricanes in seven
Linda Cohn: Panthers in seven
Ray Ferraro: Hurricanes in six
Leah Hextall: Panthers in six
Emily Kaplan: Hurricanes in seven
Tim Kavanagh: Panthers in six
Peter Lawrence-Riddell: Hurricanes in six
Steve Levy: Panthers in seven
Vince Masi: Hurricanes in six
Victoria Matiash: Hurricanes in six
Sean McDonough: Hurricanes in seven
Mark Messier: Panthers in seven
Mike Monaco: Hurricanes in six
Arda Öcal: Panthers in six
Kristen Shilton: Hurricanes in six
Bob Wischusen: Hurricanes in seven
Greg Wyshynski: Hurricanes in seven

Consensus prediction: Tied (12 picks each)



Oettinger: Stars can win the whole thing

Jake Oettinger likes his team’s chances against the Golden Knights after the Stars defeated the Kraken in Game 7.

Western Conference

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Sean Allen: Stars in six
Brian Boucher: Golden Knights in seven
John Buccigross: Golden Knights in seven
Ryan Callahan: Golden Knights in six
Cassie Campbell-Pascall: Golden Knights in six
Sachin Chandan: Stars in seven
Chris Chelios: Golden Knights in seven

Ryan S. Clark: Golden Knights in seven
Linda Cohn: Golden Knights in seven
Ray Ferraro: Golden Knights in seven
Leah Hextall: Stars in seven
Emily Kaplan: Golden Knights in seven
Tim Kavanagh: Stars in seven
Peter Lawrence-Riddell: Golden Knights in seven
Steve Levy: Golden Knights in seven
Vince Masi: Golden Knights in seven
Victoria Matiash: Golden Knights in seven
Mark Messier: Golden Knights in seven
Mike Monaco: Golden Knights in seven
Arda Öcal: Stars in six
Kristen Shilton: Golden Knights in seven
Bob Wischusen: Stars in seven
Greg Wyshynski: Stars in six

Consensus prediction: Golden Knights (16 of 23 picks)

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Stanley Cup playoff picks: NHL conference finals predictions