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State of the Division: March 11, 2019

Vegas remains in third with a dozen games to play

by Gordon Weigers @GoldenKnights / VegasGoldenKnights.com

The Vegas Golden Knights have hit the 70-game mark for the 2018-19 season as teams prepare to climb the playoff mountain. Vegas continues to occupy third in the Pacific Division with just 12 games remaining in the regular season.

CURRENT PACIFIC DIVISION STANDINGS

  1. Calgary Flames: 42-20-7, 91 points
  2. San Jose Sharks: 41-19-8, 90 points
  3. Vegas Golden Knights: 38-27-5, 81 points
  4. Arizona Coyotes: 34-29-5, 73 points
  5. Edmonton Oilers: 30-31-7, 67 points
  6. Vancouver Canucks: 28-32-9, 65 points
  7. Anaheim Ducks: 27-34-9, 63 points
  8. Los Angeles Kings: 25-36-8, 58 points

WHO WOULD PLAY WHO?
Pacific 1: Calgary Flames vs. Wild Card 2: Minnesota Wild
Central 1: Winnipeg Jets vs. Wild Card 1: Dallas Stars
Pacific 2: San Jose Sharks vs. Pacific 3: Vegas Golden Knights
Central 2: Nashville Predators vs. Central 3: St. Louis Blues

ON THE BUBBLE
Arizona Coyotes: The Coyotes' explosive second half of the season has them one point back of Minnesota for the second wild card position.

Colorado Avalanche: The Avalanche are 6-3-1 in their last 10 games which gives them a glimmer of hope of reaching the postseason, but captain and leading goal-scorer Gabriel Landeskog is out long-term with an injury. Colorado can still make a push, but it will be tough without their leader.

GOOD TIME TO GET HOT
Vegas, San Jose and Arizona were the three hottest teams in the division last week. The Golden Knights saw their win streak max out at six games as they knocked off Calgary and Vancouver. The Sharks doubled their two-game win streak to four games with wins against Montreal and St. Louis. Arizona won six-of-seven games during a lengthy homestand and is one point behind Minnesota in the wild card standings.

THE WEEK AHEAD
Calgary: vs. New Jersey (March 12), vs. NY Rangers (March 15), at Winnipeg (March 16)
San Jose: at Minnesota (March 11), at Winnipeg (March 12), vs. Florida (March 14), vs. Nashville (March 16)
Vegas: at Dallas (March 15), vs. Edmonton* (March 17)
Arizona: at Chicago (March 11), at St. Louis (March 12), vs. Anaheim* (March 14), vs. Edmonton* (March 16)
Edmonton: vs. NY Rangers (March 11), vs. New Jersey (March 13), at Arizona* (March 16), at Vegas* (March 17)
Vancouver: vs. NY Rangers (March 13), vs. New Jersey (March 15), at Dallas (March 17)
Anaheim: vs. Nashville (March 12), at Arizona* (March 14), at Colorado (March 15), vs. Florida (March 17)
Los Angeles: vs. Nashville (March 14), vs. Florida (March 16)
*denotes Pacific Division matchup

WHAT IT ALL MEANS FOR VEGAS
While the standings in the Western Conference remain the same as last week, the Sharks took a brief lead in the Pacific which shook up the potential matchups. Should the Golden Knights maintain third in the division, they'll face the No. 2 seed which is expected to be either Calgary or San Jose. While Vegas will try to beat them out for home ice, they have a sense of certainty knowing their opponent will likely be the Flames or Sharks.

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