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NHL Playoff Watch Daily: Playoff chances, Lose for Hughes projections and more

David Berding/Icon Sportswire

Which teams have the best shot at locking up a spot in the 2019 Stanley Cup playoffs? Who's earning a better chance at the No. 1 overall pick?

Here are the latest projections for both, along with critical matchups to watch today.

Updated March 22.

Skip ahead: Playoff projections | Current matchups
Lose for Hughes standings | Tragic numbers

Playoff picture

Playoff chance projections are from Money Puck, Sports Club Stats and Dom Luszczyszyn at The Athletic. Click through to the sites to learn more about their methodology.


Playoff teams in action today

Note: All times ET. Playoff teams in bold.

Minnesota Wild at Washington Capitals, 7 p.m.
San Jose Sharks at Anaheim Ducks, 10 p.m.


Current playoff matchups

Eastern Conference

Tampa Bay Lightning (Atlantic No. 1) vs. Montreal Canadiens (WC No. 2)
Boston Bruins (Atlantic No. 2) vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (Atlantic No. 3)
Washington Capitals (Metro No. 1) vs. Carolina Hurricanes (WC No. 1)
New York Islanders (Metro No. 2) vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (Metro No. 3)

Western Conference

Winnipeg Jets (Central No. 1) vs. Dallas Stars (WC No. 1)
Nashville Predators (Central No. 2) vs. St. Louis Blues (Central No. 3)
Calgary Flames (Pacific No. 1) vs. Colorado Avalanche (WC No. 2)
San Jose Sharks (Pacific No. 2) vs. Vegas Golden Knights (Pacific No. 3)

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. However, whoever does win the draft lottery has a chance to select the next generational American forward, Jack Hughes.

Find out more about Hughes here, and be sure to read up on the rest of the top 50 draft prospects. There's also a table of every team's picks in the 2019 draft and Chris Peters' first mock draft of the season, from Feb. 19.

Note: Ottawa's first-round pick belongs to Colorado.Columbus' first-round pick belongs to Ottawa.


Tragic numbers

Teams currently in position for a wild card are denoted as such. Tragic numbers are courtesy of Damian Echevarrieta. Teams are eliminated when their tragic number hits zero, and will be denoted with an "E" in the table.


Lottery teams in action today

Note: All times ET. Lottery teams in bold.

Minnesota Wild at Washington Capitals, 7 p.m.
San Jose Sharks at Anaheim Ducks, 10 p.m.