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Flyers, Panthers could have play-in game to determine final playoff berth

Would take place Tuesday if they are tied for second Eastern wild card at end of regular season

NHL.com @NHLdotcom

A play-in game for the final berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs would take place Tuesday if the Philadelphia Flyers and Florida Panthers are tied for the second wild card from the Eastern Conference at the conclusion of the regular season Sunday.

The site of that game would be determined by an equally weighted draw held Sunday after the Panthers game at the Boston Bruins.

The play-in game would be played under Stanley Cup Playoff rules. Sudden-death overtime, with 5-on-5 skaters and 20-minute periods, would replace the 3-on-3, five-minute overtime and shootout used during the regular season.

For the play-in game to be necessary, Philadelphia (41-26-14) would have to lose by two goals to the New York Rangers at home in its regular-season finale Saturday (3 p.m. ET; NBC, NHL.TV), and Florida (42-30-8) would have to win its remaining two games in the shootout.

Florida is four points behind Philadelphia but has a game in hand. If the Panthers defeat the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; FS-F, MSG-B, NHL.TV) and win at the Bruins on Sunday (7:30 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, SN360, NESN, FS-F, NHL.TV), and the Flyers lose Saturday, each would finish with 96 points.

The tiebreaking procedures are as follows:

1. The greater number of games won, excluding games won in the shootout. This figure is reflected in the ROW (regulation/overtime wins) column of the standings. Each team has 39 nonshootout wins.

2. The greater number of points earned in games between the tied teams. If two teams are tied, and have not played an equal number of home games against each other, points earned in the first game played in the city that had the extra game will not be included. 

The teams have played three times and, with the first game in Florida excluded, each has two points. 

3. The greater differential between goals for and against during the regular season. In the standings, a victory in the shootout counts as one goal for, and a shootout loss counts as one goal against.

Philadelphia is plus-3 and Florida is minus-1.

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