Thursday, March 29, 2012

Leafs and Ducks Removed, Predators Clinched

There wasn't a great deal of time to pull together a playoff pool post for Wednesday, so it was kind of left behind and a slightly bigger one will be dropped today.

There was a little bit of movement on the selection sheet from the last couple of days, as the Toronto Maple Leafs were officially eliminated on Tuesday night, with their loss to the Hurricanes and the win by Buffalo, thus ending any hope of having Phil Kessel, Dion Phaneuf or James Reimer on your playoff pool team.  This has got to be one heck of a disappointment for the club, as they held a solid position in the Eastern Conference playoff picture for so long, but the floor just fell out from underneath them, making their hard work go for naught in the end.

On Wednesday night, the Anaheim Ducks were officially eliminated, even with beating the San Jose Sharks, as the Los Angeles Kings beat the Calgary Flames, making two teams with 88 points in the standings at the bottom of the playoff picture and the Ducks can only hit 87 points this year, so they are now out.  No Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf, Teemu Selanne or Jonas Hiller for any of you Ducks fans going into the pool.  The Ducks had a pretty tough year all around, with a coaching change and some underachieving superstars, it was almost doomed from the start.

Now, on the plus side of the playoffs, the Nashville Predators have officially clinched their playoff spot, according to and even though the math would say otherwise, the schedule must be the telling factor, as Los Angeles, San Jose and Phoenix will likely all have to play each other enough times and points will be dropped with certainty and the Predators cannot be caught that way.  So, it's official... the Predators are back in the playoffs.  The team is led by Pekka Rinne, who is among the league leaders in pool points this year and with all the acquisitions they have made this year, they have given notice to the rest of the West, that they want to make a lot of noise this year.

Now, as for Thursday night's action... there could be a lot going on.  The New York Islanders could be eliminated tonight with any kind of loss to the Penguins tonight, while the Boston Bruins, New Jersey Devils and Chicago Blackhawks all have the possibility to clinch their spots tonight with a combination of wins and losses for most.  Tomorrow's post could be a pretty good one.

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