SHARE
Round 3
Stanley Cup Final

Idle Bruins, Hawks can earn playoff spots tonight

Friday, 03.30.2012 / 10:10 AM / Drive to the Playoffs

By Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Share with your Friends


Idle Bruins, Hawks can earn playoff spots tonight
Nine playoff spots remain available overall, but the Bruins and Blackhawks can clinch spots Friday if a few things go their way.
Two teams can join the playoff party Friday without touching a puck.

With 94 percent of the season played -- 1,160 of 1,230 games -- nine playoff spots, five division titles, both conference titles and the Presidents' Trophy remain up for grabs.

But with nine days left in the regular season, two of those remaining playoff spots can be claimed by the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks -- if a few things go their way.

The Bruins will have a chance to defend their Stanley Cup title if the Buffalo Sabres lose in regulation to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Boston had a chance to clinch Thursday, but their shootout loss to Washington delayed their opportunity to join the Rangers, Penguins and Flyers in the Eastern Conference playoff mix.

The Blackhawks will be watching the Kings-Oilers game in Edmonton, as any loss by the Kings would put the Hawks into the playoffs for the fourth straight season.

They missed on their first chance to clinch Thursday, but if they get in Friday, they would join the Blues, Canucks, Red Wings and Predators in the Western Conference playoff party.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK

Quote of the Day

That was something I've been dreaming of, something I've told myself before the third period I was going to do ... It was an amazing feeling. It's hard to describe. I didn't believe it went in at first but when I saw all the reaction and all the fans going crazy and my teammates going crazy, it's just an unbelievable feeling. I didn't know what to do. I didn't know whether to jump or just skate and do a Theo Fleury. I don't think I'm the same caliber player he is so I couldn't do it.

— Flames forward Mikael Backlund on scoring the overtime winner against the Ducks in Gm. 3