The Detroit Red Wings make their only regular-season visit to Consol Energy Center when they face the Pittsburgh Penguins in this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry game (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN2). But it's not impossible that the Red Wings could be back next week for the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Pittsburgh has locked up the Metropolitan Division title and the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference. The Penguins' first-round opponent will be the first wild-card finisher, a position Detroit holds entering the game. The Red Wings begin the night with 90 points, one more than the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The Boston Bruins know they'll be in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the Detroit Red Wings are scrambling to get to the postseason for the 23rd consecutive season. The longtime rivals face off in the Wednesday Night Rivalry game (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, RDS, TSN2). The Bruins clinched the Atlantic Division title last week and are battling for the Presidents' Trophy; the Red Wings are in a clutch of teams battling for the two wild-card spots in the Eastern Conference.
Three weeks into the season, the Philadelphia Flyers and New York Rangers were scrambling to end slumps that threatened to keep them out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Things have changed a lot since then: They will meet at Madison Square Garden in this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry game with the winner having the inside track on second place in the Metropolitan Division and home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs -- likely against the loser.
The Chicago Blackhawks may be the defending Stanley Cup champions, but they find themselves looking up at the St. Louis Blues as the teams prepare to face off in this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry game (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN2). The Blues come to Chicago leading not only the Blackhawks and the rest of the Central Division; they're on top of the overall standings as they chase the first Stanley Cup in franchise history.
The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens will face off for the 624th time in the regular season when they meet at Bell Centre in this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry game (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, RDS, TSN-Habs). They've also played 170 times in 33 series during the Stanley Cup Playoffs, by far the most of any two teams in the NHL.
The Philadelphia Flyers would like nothing more than to complete a home-and-home sweep when they host the Washington Capitals in this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry matchup (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN2). The Flyers rallied from a two-goal deficit in the third period to win 5-4 at Verizon Center on Sunday, enough to keep them ahead of a pack of five Metropolitan Division teams that are separated by three points.
The one constant in the history of the Buffalo Sabres has been the Boston Bruins. The teams have been in the same division since the Sabres entered the NHL in 1970. They're at opposite ends of the Atlantic Division standings this season, but there will be plenty of intensity when they face off for the fourth time this season in this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry game (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN2).
Roughly 180 miles separate the cities they represent, but there's a lot more distance between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres in the standings heading into this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry game (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN2, RDS2).
The Penguins come to First Niagara Center riding high, with the best record in the Eastern Conference. The Sabres have the fewest points in the NHL and are looking to end a six-game losing streak in their own building.
The Chicago Blackhawks and Detroit Red Wings no longer reside in the same division. But the Red Wings' move to the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference as part of the NHL’s realignment won’t diminish the feelings between the teams when they meet in this week’s Wednesday Night Rivalry game (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN2).
It’s the first meeting between the teams since their seven-game showdown in the Western Conference Semifinal series last spring, when the Blackhawks lost three of the first four games but won the final three on the way to the Stanley Cup.
Each player has excelled against the other's team. Crosby, the NHL's leading scorer this season, has 15 goals and 45 points in 26 career games against the Capitals. Ovechkin, has 22 goals and 40 points in 32 games against Pittsburgh.
The Penguins have won 18 of the 32 games between the teams since Crosby and Ovechkin entered the NHL in 2005, including the past five. The Capitals haven't beaten Pittsburgh since Jan. 11, 2012.
They said, 'You're going to love the city. It's smaller than Philadelphia, but you're going to love it. You're going to love the fans. Just watching the playoffs last year, the fans seemed louder there than they did anywhere. I'm really excited about that.
— Forward Scott Hartnell on his upcoming season with the Columbus Blue Jackets