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game recap

Howard leads Red Wings past Flyers

Detroit inches closer to 25th consecutive playoff berth

by Paul Harris / Correspondent

DETROIT -- Jimmy Howard made 30 saves and the Detroit Red Wings moved closer to their 25th consecutive appearance in the Stanley Cup Playoffs with a 3-0 win against the Philadelphia Flyers at Joe Louis Arena on Wednesday.

"It's a big thing," said Red Wings rookie forward Andreas Athanasiou, who scored a goal. "These last couple of weeks we know how important every game is so we've been doing a good job being calm, cool and collective here. Even when we were looking on from the outside there for a little bit, we stuck with it because we believe in ourselves."

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Plenty on the line for Flyers, Red Wings

Teams in three-way battle with Bruins for final two playoff spots in Eastern Conference

by Bill Price @BillPriceNHL / Editor in Chief

And then there were two.

With five days left in the regular season, 14 of the 16 berths in the Stanley Cup Playoffs have been clinched. The New York Islanders, Tampa Bay Lightning and Minnesota Wild clinched Tuesday, but the Islanders were the only ones to do so with a victory.

The Islanders locked up their second straight playoff berth and third in four seasons Tuesday with a 4-3 come-from-behind overtime victory against the Washington Capitals. The Lightning lost 3-2 to the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden but clinched their third straight playoff berth when the Boston Bruins lost to the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1 in a shootout. The Wild lost 3-0 to the San Jose Sharks, their fourth straight (0-4-0) but made the playoffs for the fourth straight season when the Colorado Avalanche lost 4-3 to the Nashville Predators.

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Weekes on the Web

Flyers, Red Wings scrambling to get into playoffs

Need win in Wednesday Night Rivalry game to bolster postseason chances

by Kevin Weekes @KevinWeekes / NHL Network Analyst

Each Wednesday throughout the regular season, Kevin Weekes will be offering his pluses and minuses for the teams competing in the NBCSN Wednesday Night Rivalry game in his Weekes on the Web blog. Weekes also will assist fans with three must-watch elements of the game.

The Detroit Red Wings have made the Stanley Cup Playoffs in each of the past 24 seasons. But that streak is in jeopardy; the Red Wings enter Wednesday even in points with the Boston Bruins in the race for third place in the Atlantic Division, though the Red Wings have a game in hand. If Detroit wins their final three games of the season, the streak will continue.

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Red Wings' playoff streak to continue if they win out

Crucial tests loom with back-to-back games against Flyers, Bruins

by Paul Harris / Correspondent

DETROIT -- The Detroit Red Wings know if they win their three remaining regular-season games, they will qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the 25th straight time.

But if they fail to do so, the longest active streak of consecutive postseason appearances in the history of major North American sports will come to a halt.

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Wednesday Night Rivalry

Mason enjoying heavy workload for Flyers

Goaltender thriving with Philadelphia in thick of playoff chase

by Adam Kimelman @NHLAdamK / Deputy Managing Editor

Credit for the recent strong play of Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Steve Mason can be given to a lot of people.

One of them is Olivia Pope.

The political fixer portrayed by Kerry Washington in the ABC drama "Scandal" has, as much as anyone else, helped Mason play some of the best hockey of his career. That strong play in goal has helped the Flyers enter their game Wednesday against the Detroit Red Wings (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports) holding the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference.

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Wednesday Night Rivalry

Flyers, Red Wings making final push

Philadelphia's Simmonds, Detroit's Howard among surging players

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / Managing Editor

The Detroit Red Wings have two paths to the Stanley Cup Playoffs; the Philadelphia Flyers have one. One of these teams will move two points closer to the postseason by winning the Wednesday Night Rivalry game at Joe Louis Arena (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports).

The Flyers and Red Wings each begin the night with 91 points; Philadelphia has a game in hand. A 10-3-2 run has carried the Flyers into the second wild card into the playoffs from the Eastern Conference, with a chance to catch the New York Islanders for the first wild card. This game begins a tough closing stretch for the Flyers, who play four times in the final five days of the season.

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game preview

Major playoff implications for Red Wings, Flyers

Detroit and Philadelphia need win to take step toward postseason

by Paul Harris / Correspondent

FLYERS (39-26-13) at RED WINGS (40-28-11)

TV: 8 p.m., ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports

DETROIT -- It will be the biggest game of the season for the Detroit Red Wings and the Philadelphia Flyers when they play at Joe Louis Arena on Wednesday.

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