NHL: Tuesday Picks
What’s going on with the Ottawa Senators? Just about a month ago it seemed like a certainty that the Sens would miss the playoffs. Now on March 24th, the Sens have taken over the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. A big part of the turnaround is due to the play of the “Hamburglar” rookie goaltender Andrew Hammond. The 27-year-old is 14-0-1 in his first 15 starts. The White Rock, BC native was undrafted and has become one of the top feel good stories of the 2014-15 season.
The Senators currently have 85 points, while the Boston Bruins are a point behind at 84. The Sens also have a game in hand and trail the Washington Capitals for the first Wild Card spot by only three points and also have a game in hand on the Caps. This has turned into quite the race out East.
In the West, it’s looking more and more likely that the Minnesota Wild and Winnipeg Jets will be the two wild card clubs. Both have played great as of late with the Wild being one of the league’s best since the all star break and the Jets winners of five straight. While things can change quickly, with both clubs strong play, it appears they are on the fast track towards playoff berths. The big race appears to currently be in the Pacific division with the defending Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings trailing the Calgary Flames by two points for the third spot in the division. The Kings have a game in hand on the Flames, although the Flames hold the tie breaker as they have more Regulation-Overtime Wins (ROW) than the Kings. These clubs do play each other one more time on April 9th in what could be the deciding factor on who gets in to the playoffs.
Lets take a look at today’s games.
1) Minnesota Wild at New York Islanders
Predicted Winner: Islanders
2) Los Angeles Kings at New York Rangers
Predicted Winner: Rangers
3) St. Louis Blues at Pittsburgh Penguins
Predicted Winner: Blues
4) Anaheim Ducks at Columbus Blue Jackets
Predicted Winner: Ducks
5) Arizona Coyotes at Detroit Red Wings
Predicted Winner: Red Wings
6) Florida Panthers at Tampa Bay Lightning
Predicted Winner: Panthers
7) Montréal Canadiens at Nashville Predators
Predicted Winner: Predators
8) Winnipeg Jets at Vancouver Canucks
Predicted Winner: Canucks