Mar 20, 2014, 9:19 AM EDT
While there were only four games on the slate on Wednesday, the parity in the NHL means that every night can make a difference. Here’s a look at how those contests affected the outlook in the East and West:
- OK, there was only one game for the East, but it was a substantial one. The Tampa Bay Lightning rode Steven Stamkos‘ hat trick to a 5-3 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Bolts have won four in a row while the Buds have dropped three consecutive contests.
Here’s the refreshed conference outlook, via NBC Sports:
- It was a busy night for the Central Division. At the higher ranks, the Colorado Avalanche grabbed a charity point in an OT loss to the Winnipeg Jets while the Chicago Blackhawks beat the St. Louis Blues 4-0. Chicago has one more point than Colorado for the second spot in the division, but losing Patrick Kane for multiple weeks is obviously bad news.
- Again, the Jets grabbed an important two points, keeping their slim playoff hopes alive.
- Speaking of shaky hopes, the Vancouver Canucks blanked the Nashville Predators 2-0 to stay in the picture as well.
Take a look at the Western Conference races via NBC Sports:
- Brandon Saad brings championship experience to Blue Jackets 2
- Sharks sign Joel Ward to three-year deal 12
- Sabres lock up O’Reilly through 2022-23 53
- Locked in: Columbus signs Saad to six-year, $36M deal 25
- Oilers sign McDavid to entry-level contract 19
- ‘Hawks would like to re-sign Oduya, but still working through ‘financial hurdles’ 16
- Trade: Caps acquire Oshie from Blues for Brouwer, Copley and draft pick 73
- Voynov takes plea, gets 90 days in jail plus probation 60
- Curtains on Broadway: Martin St. Louis calls it a career 36
- Discuss: Where’s the best fit for Alex Semin? 23
- Blockbuster: Kessel traded to the Penguins (131)
- Trade: Flyers send Rinaldo to Bruins for 2017 third-rounder (105)
- Trade: Jackets land Saad; Anisimov and Dano headed to Chicago (93)
- Bypassing a buyout? Kings terminate Richards’ contract for ‘material breach’ (90)
- Trade: Caps acquire Oshie from Blues for Brouwer, Copley and draft pick (73)