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Game Predictions 3/18/2008

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Toronto vs. NY Islanders – With Sundin and Antropov down, it looks as though the miracle late season run could be over.  But as I have previously written, I firmly believe that Sundin sat down with his fellow NTC boys immediately before the deadline to make a playoff pact.  These guys are going to play for the captain whether he’s on the ice or not.  Even if they are a daunting 6 points out of the playoffs with 4 teams to leap over.  – MAPLE LEAFS

Pittsburgh vs. NY Rangers – The battle for the Atlantic begins.  The Rangers had a meltdown against the Florida teams recently, but Lundquist has been playing extremely well in net.  And keep this in mind – the Rangers are only 3 points ahead of the eighth place Flyers.  They are far from safe.  With clutch guys like Drury and Shanahan, they can do some damage here.  – RANGERS

Atlanta vs. Philadelphia – I plan to post a pre-game blog later today.  – FLYERS

Calgary vs. Columbus – Congratulations to Rick Nash becoming the fifth captain in the Blue Jackets franchise history.  I’d expect to see this guy in Ohio for a long time to come.  That is, if they can find him an appropriate linemate.  – FLAMES

St. Louis vs. Montreal – CANADIENS

Washington vs. Nashville –  These teams each need the win tonight to keep playoff hopes alive.  Nashville is currently sitting in ninth, four points behind the Flames, Canucks, and Avalanche.  Losing tonight makes the chasm between ninth and eighth too broad to cross, so they must take this game from Washington.  As for the Caps, they’re in 10th – one point behind Buffalo and two behind Philadelphia.  If they win tonight and Philadelphia loses, the Caps would take over the eighth spot by virtue of one more win.  – CAPITALS

Phoenix vs. Edmonton – These teams have the exact same record – 36-32-5.  Since Edmonton won the previous 3 meetings, they hold the advantage in the tie-breaker.  The Coyotes, following a loss to the Canucks last night, need a win to stay in this.  It will be difficult against the surging Oilers.  – OILERS

San Jose vs. Los Angeles – SHARKS

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