As we march into the last weekend of the season, let's take a look at what's on the line Friday night (projected matchups can be found here):
--With a win, the Avalanche could pass the Anaheim Ducks for the top record in the Western Conference, but the Ducks could still reclaim the lead with wins over the weekend (Saturday at Kings, Sunday vs. Avs).
--With a win, the Blues would pass the Avalanche for first place in the Central Division. The Blues also could pass the Ducks for the top record in the Western Conference, meaning home-ice advantage through the conference finals. But the Western Conference title cannot be claimed Friday night.
--With a win, the Tampa Bay Lightning would pass the Montreal Canadiens for the No. 2 seed in the Atlantic Division. The two teams will face each other in the first round, but home-ice advantage is still at stake. Both teams play over the weekend (Habs vs. Rangers on Saturday, Bolts at Caps on Sunday), so the order could change.
--The Columbus Blue Jackets could pass the Philadelphia Flyers for the No. 3 seed in the Metropolitan Division, and if the Blue Jackets hang on to the spot, they would face the New York Rangers in the first round. But the berth cannot be locked up Friday night as the Flyers play again Saturday (at Penguins) and Sunday (vs. Hurricanes), and the Blue Jackets play again Saturday (at Panthers).
--The Detroit Red Wings could pass the Blue Jackets for the first wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference, but cannot clinch it Friday night.