Welcome to the ninth week of our Western Conference playoff race coverage. Amazingly, it looks like the Calgary Flames may actually make the playoffs as they’ve gone on a crazy run over the past month. At the same time as Calgary got hot, many of the teams around them got ice cold. Timing truly is everything.
Let’s check out the race as we begin the weekend!
WHERE THEY STAND
The Flames head into the weekend tied for fifth in points and sixth outright in points percentage.
There are fundamentally three races going on concurrently:
- Anaheim, Edmonton and Calgary are duking it out for the second and third Pacific Division spots.
- Nashville and St. Louis are fighting for the last Central Division spot.
- Calgary, Nashville, St. Louis and Los Angeles are fighting for the two wildcard spots.
Los Angeles still looks like the odd team out. Everyone around them just keeps winning and they’re having a tough time gaining any ground.
If the playoffs began today, the Flames would be playing San Jose based on all the current tiebreakers.
THIS PAST WEEK
The Flames swept the three games they’ve played over the past week, beating Detroit, the Islanders and Montreal.
THIS COMING WEEK
The Flames play three times before next Friday. They visit Winnipeg on Saturday, then are back home to play Pittsburgh on Monday and Boston on Wednesday.
Focusing in on Anaheim, Edmonton and Los Angeles – in terms of the divisional race and Calgary’s ability to clinch eventually:
- Anaheim (two points up, games are even): they play St. Louis, Washington and St. Louis again.
- Edmonton (even in points, one game in hand): they play Pittsburgh, Montreal, Dallas and Boston.
- Los Angeles (eight points back, one game in hand): they play Washington, St. Louis, Arizona and Buffalo.