Since we're down to the final moments of postseason life for teams in contention, Puck Daddy solemnly begins a daily countdown to annihilation.
The teams chasing the playoff bubble had a glimmer of hope recently when the Columbus Blue Jackets lost a heartbreaker to the Blackhawks and the Philadelphia Flyers struggled. Might one of those teams tumble down the standings and allow the Devils, Leafs or Capitals to sneak in at the end?
Based on Sunday’s results … nah, probably not.
The Flyers’ win over Buffalo gives them 89 points, two in back of the Rangers for home ice in the first round with a game in-hand. The moved five points up on the Devils and six up on the Capitals, although the Jackets (87) remain in striking distance with the same number of games (4) left.
Columbus’s dominating win over the Islanders moved them three ahead of the Devils and Leafs. They’re not out of the woods yet, however – they have back to back games with Phoenix and Dallas, two teams battling for the playoffs in the West.
If the Jackets go 2-2-0 and the Devils sweep out, then Jersey’s a point ahead of them.
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.
Here’s the Eastern Conference picture:
Place/ Pts./ROW (Games Remaining)
% Chance 1st Wild Card
% Chance of 2nd Wild Card B
WILD CARD 1/88/32 (1H/3A)
Columbus Blue Jackets
WILD CARD 2/87/35 (1H/3A)
New Jersey Devils
The Devils host the Calgary Flames on Monday night, which is just the sort of weeknight game against a non-conference opponent where the Devils typically lay an egg.
As it stands, it’s Montreal hosting Tampa Bay in Round 1, and the Rangers hosting the Flyers. But the Bruins and Penguins are waiting on first-round foes – and keeping an eye on where Detroit ends up.
Meanwhile in the Western Conference:
Place/Pts./ROW (Games Remaining)
% Chance Wild Card A
% Chance of Wild Card B
WILD CARD 1/92/33 (3H/1A)
WILD CARD 2/87/35 (3H/1A)
Whoops … dropped your game in-hand there, Dallas.
The Stars lost 3-2 to the Florida Panthers on Sunday, outshooting them 37-24 but going 1-for-6 on the power play. They keeps them at 87 points, with the Stars and Coyotes both having four games left – including one against each other to end the season.
The Wild play the Jets tonight, while the Ducks play Vancouver.