NHL playoff watch: Key matchups on the schedule Tuesday

NHL playoff watch: Key matchups on the schedule Tuesday
Mar 22, 2022

  • Tim KavanaghESPN.com

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      Tim Kavanagh is a senior NHL editor for ESPN. He’s a native of upstate New York.

Following Monday’s trade deadline, the NHL’s top contenders have all loaded up for the final rush to the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. While the eight teams in the Eastern Conference field are largely decided (with some shuffling forthcoming for seeding), the West remains open for a few slots. Tuesday’s slate may help to provide some clarity.

The two key matchups we’ll be monitoring most closely are the Edmonton Oilers-Dallas Stars game and the Nashville Predators-Los Angeles Kings contest. Three of those four are currently in playoff position, with the Stars just one point back of the Vegas Golden Knights for the second wild-card spot; the Knights are poised to take on the Winnipeg Jets tonight, as they hope to pull out of what has been a rough stretch of late.

As we enter the post-deadline stretch of the 2021-22 regular season, it’s time to check in on all the playoff races — along with the teams jockeying for position in the 2022 NHL draft lottery.

Note: Playoff chances are via FiveThirtyEight. Tragic numbers are courtesy of Damian Echevarrieta of the NHL.

Jump ahead:
Current playoff matchups
Today’s games
Expanded standings
Race for No. 1 pick

Current playoff matchups

Eastern Conference

A1 Florida Panthers vs. WC2 Washington Capitals
A2 Tampa Bay Lightning vs. A3 Toronto Maple Leafs
M1 Carolina Hurricanes vs. WC1 Boston Bruins
M2 New York Rangers vs. M3 Pittsburgh Penguins

Western Conference

C1 Colorado Avalanche vs. WC2 Vegas Golden Knights
C2 Minnesota Wild vs. C3 Nashville Predators
P1 Calgary Flames vs. WC1 St. Louis Blues
P2 Los Angeles Kings vs. P3 Edmonton Oilers

Today’s games

Note: All times Eastern. All out-of-market games available on ESPN+

New York Rangers at New Jersey Devils, 7 p.m.
Columbus Blue Jackets at Pittsburgh Penguins, 7 p.m.
St. Louis Blues at Washington Capitals, 7 p.m.
Tampa Bay Lightning at Carolina Hurricanes, 7 p.m.
Philadelphia Flyers at Detroit Red Wings, 7:30 p.m.
Ottawa Senators at New York Islanders, 7:30 p.m.
Vegas Golden Knights at Winnipeg Jets, 8 p.m.
Edmonton Oilers at Dallas Stars, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN+ exclusive)
San Jose Sharks at Calgary Flames, 9 p.m.
Seattle Kraken at Arizona Coyotes, 10 p.m.
Nashville Predators at Los Angeles Kings, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN+ exclusive)

Expanded standings

Atlantic Division

Points: 90
Regulation wins: 32
Playoff position: A1
Games left: 20
Next game: @ MTL (Thursday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 84
Regulation wins: 30
Playoff position: A2
Games left: 21
Next game: @ CAR (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

2 Related

Points: 83
Regulation wins: 33
Playoff position: A3
Games left: 20
Next game: vs. NJ (Wednesday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 83
Regulation wins: 31
Playoff position: WC1
Games left: 19
Next game: vs. TB (Thursday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 57
Regulation wins: 14
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 20
Next game: vs. PHI (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 17

Points: 52
Regulation wins: 17
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 19
Next game: vs. PIT (Wednesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 10

Points: 49
Regulation wins: 18
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 20
Next game: @ NYI (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 9

Points: 44
Regulation wins: 12
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 19
Next game: vs. FLA (Thursday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 2

Metropolitan Division

Points: 88
Regulation wins: 35
Playoff position: M1
Games left: 20
Next game: vs. TB (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 85
Regulation wins: 34
Playoff position: M2
Games left: 19
Next game: @ NJ (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 85
Regulation wins: 31
Playoff position: M3
Games left: 19
Next game: vs. CBJ (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

This season will include 103 exclusive regular-season games across ESPN, ESPN+, Hulu and ABC, and more than 1,000 out-of-market games will be available on ESPN+.
• How to watch
• Subscribe to ESPN+
• Stream the NHL on ESPN

Points: 80
Regulation wins: 27
Playoff position: WC2
Games left: 18
Next game: vs. STL (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 67
Regulation wins: 22
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 19
Next game: @ PIT (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 25

Points: 61
Regulation wins: 24
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 22
Next game: vs. OTT (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 25

Points: 51
Regulation wins: 16
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 20
Next game: @ DET (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 11

Points: 49
Regulation wins: 15
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 20
Next game: vs. NYR (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 9

Central Division

Points: 95
Regulation wins: 37
Playoff position: C1
Games left: 19
Next game: vs. VAN (Wednesday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 78
Regulation wins: 28
Playoff position: C2
Games left: 21
Next game: vs. VAN (Thursday)
Playoff chances: 98%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 78
Regulation wins: 30
Playoff position: C3
Games left: 19
Next game: @ LA (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 96%
Tragic number: N/A

2 Related

Points: 77
Regulation wins: 31
Playoff position: WC1
Games left: 21
Next game: @ WSH (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 97%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 71
Regulation wins: 22
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 21
Next game: vs. EDM (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 72%
Tragic number: 41

Points: 68
Regulation wins: 25
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 19
Next game: vs. VGK (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 12%
Tragic number: 34

Points: 53
Regulation wins: 14
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 19
Next game: @ ANA (Wednesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 19

Points: 44
Regulation wins: 15
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 20
Next game: vs. SEA (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 12

Pacific Division

Points: 84
Regulation wins: 33
Playoff position: P1
Games left: 20
Next game: vs. SJ (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: >99%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 76
Regulation wins: 26
Playoff position: P2
Games left: 18
Next game: vs. NSH (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 81%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 75
Regulation wins: 29
Playoff position: P3
Games left: 19
Next game: @ DAL (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 84%
Tragic number: N/A

This season will include 103 exclusive regular-season games across ESPN, ESPN+, Hulu and ABC, and more than 1,000 out-of-market games will be available on ESPN+.
• How to watch
• Subscribe to ESPN+
• Stream the NHL on ESPN

Points: 72
Regulation wins: 28
Playoff position: WC2
Games left: 17
Next game: @ WPG (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: 50%
Tragic number: N/A

Points: 68
Regulation wins: 24
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 18
Next game: @ COL (Wednesday)
Playoff chances: 9%
Tragic number: 32

Points: 65
Regulation wins: 18
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 17
Next game: vs. CHI (Wednesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 27

Points: 62
Regulation wins: 18
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 20
Next game: @ CGY (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 30

Points: 44
Regulation wins: 16
Playoff position: N/A
Games left: 19
Next game: @ ARI (Tuesday)
Playoff chances: Tragic number: 10

Race for the No. 1 pick

The NHL uses a draft lottery to determine the order at the top of the first round, so the team that finishes in last place is not guaranteed the No. 1 selection. As of 2021, a team may move up a maximum of 10 spots if it wins the lottery, so only 11 teams are eligible for the draw for the No. 1 pick. Full details on the process can be found here.

Points: 44
Regulation wins: 12

Points: 44
Regulation wins: 15

Points: 44
Regulation wins: 16

Points: 49
Regulation wins: 15

Points: 49
Regulation wins: 18

Points: 51
Regulation wins: 16

Points: 52
Regulation wins: 17

Points: 53
Regulation wins: 14

Points: 57
Regulation wins: 14

Points: 61
Regulation wins: 24

Points: 62
Regulation wins: 18

Points: 65
Regulation wins: 18

Points: 67
Regulation wins: 22

Points: 68
Regulation wins: 24

Points: 68
Regulation wins: 25

Points: 71
Regulation wins: 22

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