Must-win for Sabres vs. Rangers; Stars look to take over eighth in West (Puck Previews)

Here are your Puck Previews: Spotlighting the key games in NHL action, news and views as well as general frivolity. Make sure to stop back here for the nightly Three Stars when the games are finished.

• Just a little Teemu to get you through a rough day.

Preview: New York Rangers at Buffalo Sabres, 7 p.m. ET

A win puts the Sabres two points back of eighth-place New York. A loss and they're six points and four wins back, an insurmountable gap with only three games to play. Is this it for Buffalo?

Preview: Dallas Stars at St. Louis Blues, 8 p.m. ET

Four Western Conference games tonight. This is the only one that really means much of anything. The Stars are still rolling, and with a win in St. Louis, they can take over eighth in the West. The Blues sit sixth, but this is their game in hand on LA and San Jose in fourth and fifth. If they want home ice in the first round, they need a win.

Preview: Nashville Predators at Chicago Blackhawks, 8:30 p.m. ET

Is anyone picking Nashville in this one? Anyone? Bueller? The Blackhawks are 4-0-1 in their last five in the United Center, they've won all four games against Nashville this year, they're 8-0-1 in their last nine, and Nashville is icing a very, very inexperienced lineup.

Preview: Anaheim Ducks at Calgary Flames, 9 p.m. ET

It's a longshot that the Ducks could lose control of the second seed in the West, but they have just 5 wins in their last 14. If they fall much further, and one of the teams behind them gets hot, it's not out of the realm. Luckily, the Flames are a good team against which to re-find your game

Preview: Edmonton Oilers at Colorado Avalanche, 9 p.m. ET

Incredibly, the Oilers aren't yet eliminated from playoff contention. But they're 10 points back and they've lost sixth straight, so if they want to make that improbable comeback, they really need to start tonight by taking advantage of a rare lesser opponent.

Check out previews and updated scores for all of today's games on the Y! Sports NHL scores and scheds page. For tonight's starting goalies, check out Goalie Post.

Evening Reading

• Darryl Sutter puts over Jonathan Toews. ""Other than what I think of our guy, he's the best captain in hockey." [Daily Herald]

• Bobby Butler of the Predators will write “Pray for Boston” on his skates tonight. [Tennesseean]

• Are big changes afoot in Detroit and New Jerey? [Sports Illustrated]

• Eric Duhatschek reminds us that it doesn't really matter if you sprint or limp into the playoffs once they start. [The Globe & Mail]

Bold Prediction: Sabres stay alive.

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