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Friday April 2, 2010 9:33 pm

Calgary Flame-out will clinch two more playoff spots




Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: NHL, Playoffs,

Jarome IginlaA lot of teams are counting on a Calgary Flames loss tonight. Not the least of which are the Colorado Avalanche, who welcome the Albertans into the Pepsi Center in a pivotal Western Conference match that may have a tremendous impact on the playoff standings. As it stands now, Colorado is on a three-game losing streak and are struggling to hold on to eighth place while the Flames, winners of two in a row, currently sit ninth, two points back.

Also keeping an eye or two on this game will be the Vancouver Canucks and Nashville Predators, who are third and fifth respectively. If Colorado manages to knock off the Flames, regardless of how, both teams will clinch a postseason appearance at the least. The Canucks will also face off against the formerly mighty Ducks, and a point earned in that game will also clinch a berth, so Vancouver’s chances tonight are looking pretty good.

It is these kinds of playoff races that the 2009-10 season seems to have lacked compared to previous years. Aside from definitively knowing who will face who, it seems like it’s been obvious who will be in the playoffs for weeks now. Maybe the Olympic break took something away from the NHL playoff excitement, or maybe it’s just a slow year, which is to be expected every once in a while. Either way, with as many as 10 games left in some cases, we basically already knew what to expect. The division leaders have been so for a while, and not many other teams, save maybe Detroit or Ottawa, have been making anything interesting happen.

The last month of the NHL season is usually full of excitement, but this year, not so much. That shouldn’t take anything away from the first round of the playoffs though. Watching to see if teams like San Jose and Chicago can continue to impress in their own was, or watching to see how far Detroit’s hot streak will take them, or if Marc Savard’s loss will truly impact Boston’s chances. There’s less than two weeks left of this uninteresting hockey left in front of us, then it’s back to what we all crave, and that’s postseason madness at its finest.

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