PLAYOFF SEEDING SCENARIOS FOR PENGUINS
The Washington Capitals 3-0 win over the Boston Bruins Wednesday night did help the Penguins but also eliminated any possibility for the Penguins finishing second place in the Metropolitan Division.
The Penguins and Islanders play a pivotal game tomorrow night but after looking like a likely first round matchup for several weeks, the two teams can’t face each other in round 1.
With four days left in regular season, Penguins can still finish anywhere from 3rd place in Metropolitan Division, 1st or second Wild Card seed, or out of the playoffs.
Three points remain their magic number going into Friday’s game vs New York.
The playoff seeding scenarios that still exist for the Penguins:
Third Place Scenario
2. Washington Capitals vs 3. Pittsburgh Penguins.
WILD CARD SCENARIO’S
New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins (2nd Wildcard Seed).
Montreal Canadiens vs Pittsburgh Penguins (Top Wildcard Seed)
Tampa Bay Lightning vs Pittsburgh Penguins (Top Wildcard Seed)
NHL PLAYOFF RACE
1. NY Rangers, 111 Points, ROW 48, 2 GR
2. Washington Capitals, 101 points, ROW 40, 1 GR
2. NY Islanders, 98 Points, ROW 39, 2 GR
1. Montreal Canadiens, 106 Points, ROW 42, 2 GR
2. Tampa Bay Lightning, 104 Points, ROW 46, 2 GR
3. Detroit Red Wings, 97 Points, ROW 38, 2 GR
1. Pittsburgh Penguins, 96 points, ROW 38, 2 GR
2. Boston Bruins, 95 points, ROW 37, 2 GR
3. Ottawa Senators, 95 Points, ROW 34, 2 GR
Key Games Tonight in Eastern Conference
Ottawa Senators @ New York Rangers (Rangers are sitting Rick Nash, Marc Staal and Mats Zuccarello)
Boston Bruins @ Florida Panthers
Detroit Red Wings @ Montreal Canadiens
New Jersey Devils @ Tampa Bay Lightning
THREE-WAY TIE IN NHL SCORING RACE
Jamie Benn (83 pts), John Tavares (83 pts) and Sidney Crosby (83 pts) are all tied with 83 points in the NHL points lead. If the season ended today, Tavares would be the official Art Ross Trophy winner because he has the most goals of the three.
Tavares has 36 goals on the season, Benn 32, and Crosby trailing with 28.
Benn has just one game remaining, while Crosby and Tavares each have two games remaining. Crosby has 8 assists in two games vs Buffalo this season.
The last NHL player to win the Art Ross Trophy in a full NHL season was Stan Mikita with 87 points in 1967-68.
KAPANEN SHINES FOR WBS WEDNESDAY NIGHT
Kasperi Kapanen shined in his Penguins debut, with a goal and primary assist in the win.
“He looked good,” WBS coach John Hynes said. “He has good habits that he got back home. Most importantly his compete level, he looked in place. Played a solid 60 minute game. He has good instincts.”
Meanwhile, Matthew Murray continues his standout play with his 12 shutout of the season. The rookie has appeared in just 38 games.