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NHL Death Watch: Flyers, Sabres eliminated; Red Wings visit Vancouver

Greg Wyshynski
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Since we're down to the final moments of postseason life for teams in contention, Puck Daddy solemnly begins a daily countdown to annihilation.

Fare thee well, Buffalo Sabres and Philadelphia Flyers ...

The New York Rangers’ win over the Sabres ended the playoff hopes for both clubs. It’s the first time the Flyers have missed the playoffs since 2007, and just the second time since 1994-95 they’ve been out of the postseason.

Oh, this should be an interesting summer in Philly…

Huge Saturday in the Eastern Conference, with every team that’s currently in the picture, save for the New York Rangers, in action. That includes the make-up game for the Pittsburgh Penguins vs. the Boston Bruins; the Capitals at the Canadiens; the Battle of Ontario, with the No. 5 seed on the line; and a critical game between the New York Islanders and Winnipeg Jets from Manitoba.

With a Washington loss and a Winnipeg non-shootout win, the Jets would have the Southeast lead.

Coming up, the playoff pictures for the East and West, as we shift the focus to playoff seeding. The full NHL standings and schedules can be found on Y! Sports.

All playoff percentages are from Sports Club Stats; tragic numbers and other figures via the NHL. A team is eliminated from play-offs when their "Tragic Number" hits 0.

Team (Games Remaining) Place/Pts/ROW Tragic # % Chance of Playoffs % Chance of 7th % Chance of 8th
Ottawa Senators (5) 6th/52/19 - 98.6 19 11
New York Islanders (4) 7th/51/20 - 90.3 32 33
New York Rangers (4) 8th/50/19 - 92.4 33 35
Winnipeg Jets (4) 9th/48/21 6 34.7 2 10
New Jersey Devils (5) 11th/42/14 2 0.1 0 0

The Rangers’ curb-stomping of the Sabres greatly improved their playoff chances, as they’ll still have a game in-hand in the Jets after today. The rest of their games are against non-playoff teams – although one imagines the Devils won’t roll over for the Rangers in their two games remaining together.

New Jersey is out if it loses in regulation to the Panthers.

Team (Games Remaining) Place/Pts/ROW Tragic # % Chance of Playoffs % Chance of 7th % Chance of 8th
St. Louis Blues (4) 6th/54/21 - 100% 8 1
Minnesota Wild (4) 7th/51/20 - 96.9 59 11
Columbus Blue Jackets (3) 8th/49/16 - 25.4 3 23
Detroit Red Wings (5) 9th/47/20 8 48.5 9 39
Dallas Stars (4) 10th/47/18 6 26.6 3 23
Phoenix Coyotes (5) 11th/43/15 5 12.8 0 3
Edmonton Oilers (5) 12th/41/15 2 0.0 0 0

The Oilers just keep refusing to make this official, huh?

Light schedule in the West on Saturday, but there’s one critical game: The Vancouver Canucks host the Detroit Red Wings. The Canucks don’t really have much to play for, as Minnesota is four points back with four games to play.

However … Vancouver was spanked by the Stars, 5-1, last time out. They should be fired up; and hey, when doesn’t Detroit coming into your building get you fired up?

The Blue Jackets are at San Jose on Sunday, and the Stars play at the Kings.

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