The Canadian contenders for this season's NHL playoffs

April 7, 2023
Here’s your guide to the Canadian contenders, and how it might all shake out.
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The GIST: There’s just one week left in the NHL’s regular season, but several playoff fates are still to be decided. Here’s your guide to the Canadian contenders, and how it might all shake out.

Who’s clinched: In the Eastern Conference, the Toronto Maple Leafs secured home-ice advantage for their first-round date with the Tampa Bay Lightning by gaining one point in their 2–1 overtime loss to their arch rival Boston Bruins last night. But will it be enough to reverse their first-round curse?

  • As for the Western Conference (WC), the uber talented Edmonton Oilers booked their playoff ticket last weekend and could climb in the standings (to secure an easier first-round opponent) when they face the San Jose Sharks tomorrow at 4 p.m. ET.

Who’s on the bubble: The Winnipeg Jets and Calgary Flames are in a tight race to claim one of the two remaining WC Wild Card berths. They’re tied with 89 points, but the Jets do have four games remaining compared to the Flames’ three.

  • That said, the Jets have been in a late-season free fall while the Flames have been burning bright, including a crucial 3–1 win over Winnipeg on Wednesday.
  • Both squads take the ice tomorrow, with the Jets hosting the Nashville Predators at 7 p.m. ET, while the Flames should have it relatively easy against the lowly Vancouver Canucks at 10 p.m. ET. Crunch time.