The eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference could change hands as the Boston Bruins
and New York Rangers
are both in action as part of an 11-game schedule in the NHL on Tuesday night.
Boston, which currently holds the No. 8 seed with 72 points but has lost two straight, visits the Carolina Hurricanes
at 7 p.m. ET -- also getting the evening started are the Atlanta Thrashers
and Buffalo Sabres
from Philips Arena.
The Rangers, winners of two in a row, are just a point behind the Bruins and could potentially jump ahead of them with a victory over the Montreal Canadiens
at Madison Square Garden. The game starts at 7:30 p.m. and will be televised nationally on Versus in the U.S. and RDS in Canada.
Three other games get under way at the same time: the Ottawa Senators
host the Toronto Maple Leafs
in the latest segment of the Battle of Ontario; the Phoenix Coyotes
look to build off a 4-0 win in Carolina on Saturday as they continue their road trip against the Tampa Bay Lightning
; and the Washington Capitals
play the first of two games without the suspended Alex Ovechkin
as they travel to face the Florida Panthers
Among the 8 p.m. starts is a cross-conference battle between the Philadelphia Flyers
and Nashville Predators
, both of whom look to strengthen their respective playoff positions. Also, the Colorado Avalanche
visit the St. Louis Blues
and the Minnesota Wild
welcome in the Edmonton Oilers
The San Jose Sharks
can take a four-point lead over idle Chicago for the Western Conference lead by beating the Dallas Stars
at the American Airlines Center in a game that begins at 8:30 p.m.
In the final game of the night, the Vancouver Canucks
take on the New York Islanders
at 10 p.m. The Canucks have won their first two games back at GM Place following a marathon 14-game road trip.