COLUMBUS, Ohio - If things keep going the way they have, several of the Columbus Blue Jackets will have big problems trying to grow a playoff beard.
The team that relies so heavily on youngsters was 5-12-2 on Feb. 24, but has gone 17-5-5 since.
The Blue Jackets — 30th of the 30 teams in the NHL just two months ago — hold the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference heading into Tuesday's games. With only two games left they're one point ahead of the Detroit Red Wings, who have three games remaining.
The Blue Jackets have done it by trusting in "Bob" — goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky — and coming up with a star a night to make a big play.
It's something that you don't really envision starting this way, but when you put the work in you don't feel like it's unwarranted. You definitely don't envision it unfolding this way, but you do think you can be successful at this level.
— Senators goalie Andrew Hammond, who defeated the Jets on Wednesday to improve to 6-0-1 since making his first NHL start on Feb. 18