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The Daily: Islanders In Playoff Spot; Penguins Won’t Go Away



Sidney Crosby, Penguins

Another day, another change in the Eastern Conference wildcard race. The New York Islanders won their third consecutive game, beating the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-2, to move into the second wildcard spot.

A couple of weeks ago, it seem like no team wanted the wildcard spot. Now it seems as if every team wants it. The Detroit Red Wings are 3-2-2 in their last seven. The Islanders have won four out of five. The Pittsburgh Penguins won’t go away.

The Islanders have 83 points, while the Detroit Red Wings and Washington Capitals have 82 points. They also have a game in hand over the Islanders.

The Penguins, who seemed out of the race 10 days ago, are only a point behind the Red Wings and Capitals.  They are 6-2-2 in their last 10.

Dan Kingerski of Pittsburgh Hockey Now wrote this about the Penguins after they downed the Washington Capitals Thursday: “The Pittsburgh Penguins locker room was just different. The smiles were beaming. The sense of accomplishment was eclipsed by the overflowing optimism. The Penguins found their swagger.”


Red Wings In Case You Missed It

  • Jonatan Berggren is still piling up points for the Grand Rapids Griffins. He continues to make his case to be a Detroit regular in 2024-25.
  • The Red Wings and Griffins are adding prospects to the Griffins roster to give them a taste of the American Hockey League before they play regularly next season.
  •  Detroit fans all remember how the Red Wings played without Michael Rasmussen last season. The team will miss him as he deals with his current injury.
  • Coach Derek Lalonde has shown plenty of trust in Simon Edvinsson since he was promoted from the Grand Rapids Griffins.

Red Wings Next Game

The New York Rangers have plenty to play for tonight when they meet the Red Wings in Little Caesars Arena. The Rangers are safely in the playoffs, but they only have a one point lead over the Boston Bruins for the best record in the Eastern Conference.  Home ice advantage matters in the playoffs.

Hockey Now Network

Boston: Brad Marchand, an elite offensive star with super pest tendencies,  scored his 400th goal in the Boston Bruins‘ win against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Chicago: Should the Chicago Blackhawks expedite the rebuilding process if they win the NHL draft lottery?  Chicago Hockey Now weighs in on that question?

New Jersey: The New Jersey Devils have signed a  Western Michigan University Hobey Baker trophy nominee.

Philadelphia:  Report say the Philadelphia Flyers are trying to sign Ivan Fedotov to a longer-term contract.