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 Minnesota Wild’s rally to defeat the Phoenix Coyotes increased their chances of snagging the first of two wild cards to over 50 percent, which would mean not only a playoff berth but avoiding St. Louis in the first round.
One week after coach Mike Yeo said the Wild was a “different team” and not in the midst of another late-season collapse, the Wild wasn’t giving anybody reason to believe otherwise. The Stars walked into St. Louis two nights after the Wild was pummeled there and won 4-2 tonight.
So if the Coyotes hung on to beat the Wild, the Wild would have fallen one point behind Phoenix with Dallas only a point behind the Wild. Instead, the proverbial four-point game. The Wild got two third-period goals from Zach Parise and a winning goal by Jared Spurgeon to pull three up on Phoenix in the race for the top wildcard spot and stay four up on Dallas.
Exciting times. In the Eastern Conference, too…
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
Columbus Blue Jackets
WILD CARD 1/82/33 (4H/4A)
Detroit Red Wings
WILD CARD 2/82/29 (4H/4A)
Toronto Maple Leafs
New Jersey Devils
New York Islanders
Wins by the Blue Jackets and Red Wings put them two up over the Capitals and the floundering Leafs, who now have just a 6.5 percent chance of making the playoffs.
Detroit hosts Tampa Bay tonight, while the Capitals are in Nashville.
The Rangers are in Edmonton today while the Flyers host the Bruins. The Rangers are one point up on Philly for home ice, while the Flyers have two games in hand.
Meanwhile in the Western Conference:
Place/Record/Pts. (Games Remaining)
% Chance Wild Card A
% Chance of Wild Card B
WILD CARD 1/87/31 (4H/3A)
WILD CARD 2/84/30 (4H/3A)
The Stars' huge win over the Blues put them in position to make the dance. They have a 63.2 percent chance of doing so ...
The Ducks are atop of the Pacific with 104 points, one more than San Jose and with two games in-hand. So … Sharks and Kings in the first round. Which, incidentally, would be the No. 3 vs. No. 6 series if we ranking them 1-8.