04/17/2014 02:51 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

REMINDER: Playoff Hockey Is Awesome And Everyone Should Be Watching It (VIDEOS/GIFs)


It's time to take a Zamboni to your schedule. Playoff hockey is back.

Pucks were dropped across North America as the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs began on Wednesday night and it didn't take long for jaw-dropping and possibly jaw-breaking things to start happening. Even if you haven't watched anything involving a puck since T.J. Oshie became Captain America in Sochi and don't know Doc Emrick from Dr. Seuss, playoff hockey has something for you.

While dedicated hockey fans and those with Canadian citizenship already know all about the thrilling nature of playoff hockey, casual fans of the sport may need a brief reminder about why it is it is so compelling. Thankfully, the opening night delivered plenty of examples:

Steven Stamkos Scored This Beautiful Coast-To-Coast Goal

(GIF via @PeteBlackburn)

Penguins And Blue Jackets Combined For 3 Goals In 3 Minutes

A Player Took A Puck To The Face, Is Expected To Play Game 2

(Vine via Nate from

The Guy Who Hurled Himself Over The Boards, Scored An OT Winner

(GIFs via @myregularface)

With approximately two months of beard growth remaining in these playoffs, this is only the beginning.