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Playoff Hunt: The Week Ahead In the West

by Jay Levin / Nashville Predators
The teams have all entered the final 10 games of the '10-11 regular season and the Western Conference standings remain tight. Check out's sneak peak at the match-ups of immediate concern to the Preds and the Western Conference playoff race.

We're tracking all teams within five points of the Preds in the conference standings heading into this week's play.

Team Points* Adjusted Wins^ Games Remaining* Max Pts** This Week's Schedule
#4 Phoenix 89 35 8 (6H/2A) 105 Tue vs. STL, Thu vs. CBJ, Sat vs SJ
#5 Chicago 86 34 10 (5H/5A) 106 Wed vs. FLA, Sat vs ANA, Mon at DET
#6 Los Angeles 86 33 10 (6H/4A) 106 Mon vs CGY, Thu vs SJ, Sat vs. COL
#7 Nashville 86 32 9 (7H/2A) 104 Tue vs. EDM, Thu vs ANA, Sat vs DAL
#8 Anaheim 85 36 10 (4H/6A) 105 Wed at DAL, Thu at NSH, Sat at CHI, Mon vs COL
#9 Dallas 85 33 10 (3H/7A) 105 Wed vs. ANA, Sat at NSH
#10 Calgary 84 29 8 (3H/5A) 100 Mon at LA, Wed at SJ, Sat at EDM
* as of all games played on Sun, March 20     ^ the first tie-breaker is regulation/OT wins (excluding shootout wins)
** the most points a team can finish with in the '10-11 regular season (based on games played as of Sun, March 20)

Clinch Watch: Vancouver has already clinched a playoff spot. Vancouver has also already clinched the division title and a guaranteed top-three seed in the Conference playoffs ... Edmonton and Colorado have been eliminated from playoff contention ... No other teams can clinch a playoff spot in the Western Conference this week ... There is an outside chance St. Louis can be eliminated from playoff contention this week.

Noteable: Minnesota posted an 0-3-1 record last week to fall eight points behind the Predators and have been removed from the watch for this week ... There is just one out-of-conference match-up among the teams in the playoff bunch this week: Chicago hosting Florida on Wednesday  ... There are five head-to-head match-ups involving teams in the playoff pack: Calgary at Los Angeles on Monday, Anaheim at Dallas on Wednesday, Anaheim at Nashville on Thursday, Dallas at Nashville on Saturday and Anaheim at Chicago on Saturday.

The Week That Was: The seven teams in the playoff pack in the Western Conference posted a combined 14-6-3 record on the week. Anaheim, Nashville, and Phoenix each picked up six points on the week; the Ducks were a perfect 3-0-0 (all one-goal wins, two in OT), while the Preds and Coyotoes were each 3-1-0. Chicago went 2-1-0 on the week, while Calgary, Dallas, and Los Angeles each went 1-1-1.

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