Four games left. That's all we have to look forward to when it comes to the regular season. Four games, two at home and two on the road. The fucked up thing about these four games? They are all against teams that are either in the playoffs (Rangers, Penguins and Senators) or a team that is desperately fighting for a playoff spot (Sabres, in 9th by 2 points). That's one tough schedule any way you slice it.
Add to the fact that the Bruins played yesterday and now face one of the best goaltenders in the NHL, it's going to be a tough night. There is a silver lining however to tonight's game. If Ottawa loses today against the Islanders and Boston can come away with a win, one would think that they would clinch the Northeast Division. It would put Boston up 8 points with 3 games left on the schedule.
That would be a nice thing to welcome in April, huh?
While Boston wiped the floor with New York's bastard team, New York darling was resting after a 4-1 win over the Canadiens Friday night. It's not like the Rangers have much to play for, they're the NHL's #1 seed and Pittsburgh is 5 points behind but they as well have a tough schedule that includes the Bruins and the Flyers.
So the caveat to tonight's game is winning the Northeast Division. A #2 seed would go a long way to help the Bruins in the playoffs. Think about it for a moment.
As it currently stands, the Bruins will face the Senators in the first round of the playoffs. Ottawa matches up well against Boston, but lets say that every top seed moves forward in the playoffs. Here's your first round matchup:
NYR vs WASH
BOS vs OTT
FLA vs NJ
PIT vs PHI
So like I said, lets say that the top seed moves forward in every series. Your second round could look like this:
NYR vs PIT
BOS vs FLA
Now I know that the Panthers aren't the Panthers of the past decade. They're more than a shit stain on the underwear of the NHL. They're an actual hockey team that can play the game very well, albeit in a wicked shitty division. So the Bruins face the Panthers and the Rangers have to face the Penguins?
I'll take that every day and twice on Tuesdays. It would make a dream matchup in the second and possibly set up a second straight trip to the Eastern Conference Finals where anything goes.
So yeah, clinching the division is a big deal.
So I love Twitter, as you all know, and once again Twitter comes through. If Ottawa loses in regulation, the Bruins lock up the division anyways since Boston has won the head-to-head matchup. So we could enter tonight's game as the Northeast Division champions. It seems a win would lock up the #2 seed as well should Florida lose against Detroit.
Lots of action tonight. Oh yeah, there's also this for those who love their wrestling:
Yup! Wrestlemania. Rock vs. Cena. I'm not into wrestling anymore but there's just something about the Rock that's epically amazing. The dude is a fucking beast. So if you're watching Wrestlemania tonight and fore-going te Bruins game, enjoy it.
After the jump, we're going to Rock Bottom this preview...
Okay, so I laid out the playoff scenarios and how Boston can clinch the division and the two seed. So let's take a quick look at the Eastern Conference standings, since it's just something we've come accustomed to doing.
Boston can clinch division with a win and/or a regulation loss by the Senators.
Boston can clinch the #2 seed with a win and/or a regulation loss by the Panthers.
Ottawa vs New York Islanders:
Goals For: 12
Goals Against: 4
Top 3 Senators vs. Islanders:
Erik Karlsson: 2G, 4A, 6P
Sergei Gonchar: 0G, 3A, 3P
Jason Spezza: 3G, 0A, 3P
Goaltenders vs. Islanders:
Craig Anderson: 2GP, 2-0-1, 0.98 GAA, .967 SV%, 1 SO
Alex Auld: 1GP, 1-0-0, 2.00 GAA, .933 SV%
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