Skip to content

Stars gain two points on Coyotes for second West wild card spot

Mar 29, 2014, 11:56 PM EDT

Antoine Roussel AP

The Western Conference wild card standings still boast the same two teams, but the battle for the final playoff spot remains that much more wide-open after Saturday’s contests.

The Minnesota Wild strengthened their grip on the top wild card spot with a 3-1 win against the Phoenix Coyotes while the Dallas Stars crept up on the Coyotes with a 4-2 win against the St. Louis Blues.

With that, the Stars are just one point behind the Coyotes for the final wild card position with a game in hand. In other words, the seesaw for the conference’s final playoff spot keeps moving in different directions, with things leaning toward Dallas on this night.

Being behind one point might not sound great, but consider this: the two teams meet in the final game of the 2013-14 season, so Dallas would probably be quite happy with even a one-point deficit after both teams finish Game 81.

The Wild faced the prospect of giving up their hold on the top wild card spot going into Saturday’s game, yet now they hold a three-point lead over the Wild for the seventh seed in the West and a four-point lead over Dallas (with one fewer game remaining). Those aren’t huge margins, yet that might be enough to distance themselves from the pack.

The Vancouver Canucks are still in action as of this writing, so here is a look at how those three teams alone are jostling for position:

source:

 

  1. trbowman - Mar 30, 2014 at 12:00 AM

    I just want this to come down to the last game. Don’t really care who wins. I like both clubs.

    • blomfeld - Mar 30, 2014 at 1:26 AM

      “F” Dealey Plaza, Planet of the Apes and the Pointer Sisters !!!

      _________________________________________________

      *** this message is for fans of the SC Champion LA Kings only ***

      We’ve ‘done it’ yet again friends ! … this time a 4-2 thumping of those ‘simplistic’ Canadian prairie dwellers ! Anyway, what I’m really liking here is how comrades Kopitar and Gaborik are all of a sudden starting to click … not to mention comrade Quick starting to become his old self again ! … you just gotta love it man, eh ? :)

      GO KINGS GO !!! … TODAY, TOMORROW AND FOREVER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. savior72 - Mar 30, 2014 at 12:48 AM

    Why is it there’s only a story about the Blues here when they lose or suffer an injury?

  3. paperlions - Mar 30, 2014 at 12:50 AM

    Didn’t the Blues trade for a good goalie? When is that guy going to start playing. No offense to Miller, but so far he hasn’t been an upgrade at all over what they had before. He making most of the saves he’s supposed to and precious little else.

    • guitarhunterdude - Mar 30, 2014 at 12:56 AM

      Halak and Miller are pretty similar, really. It’s amazing how much more hype Miller gets just because he happened to win the Veznia one year, and (obviously) because Halak has had more trouble staying healthy lately.

      • letsgocaps88 - Mar 30, 2014 at 1:07 AM

        Halak hasn’t been too bad in Washington, but with miller he is a top 10 goalie though. Miller in the playoffs is not a bad card to have in your hand.

      • trbowman - Mar 30, 2014 at 1:13 AM

        Halak isn’t the caliber of goalie Miller is in his dreams.

        It could be argued Miller should be a contender for the Vezina THIS year, his numbers aren’t far from Rask and Rask actually has an NHL caliber defence in front of him.

        Miller is going through a rough stretch, it happens. He’ll be fine for the playoffs. The Blues needed a goalie who can go up against the likes of Jonny Quick in the playoffs. I still like the Kings over the Blues though, but that series would be a war were it to happen. Must watch TV.

      • cmcbruinscmcbruins - Mar 30, 2014 at 10:52 AM

        The numbers are not even close when comparing Rask and Miller.

  4. sjtorpitt - Mar 30, 2014 at 12:56 AM

    It’s not “about” the Blues, guy. They happened to lose to a team in a competitive 3 team race for 2 wild card spots.

  5. jhaegs - Mar 30, 2014 at 1:12 AM

    Well that wasn’t fun. Stars played great, but Miller has to be better. Blues made a few mistakes on defense, but elite goalies are supposed to bail them out now and then. Seemed like every mistake turned into a goal tonight.

  6. gbatap - Mar 30, 2014 at 1:23 AM

    Blues have been great this year but you have to think that they don’t want to see this Stars team in the first round. Other then a blowout earlier in the year when the Stars were struggling, Dallas has taken 5 points from the Blues in the other 3 meetings. Not sure many other teams have had that kind of success this year against STL. Could be a great series.

  7. savior72 - Mar 30, 2014 at 8:57 AM

    I know what the story was “about”. Think you missed my point.

  8. savior72 - Mar 30, 2014 at 9:06 AM

    If the Blues don’t sign Miller to a contract, our goaltending is going to change dramatically next year. Elliot is in the last year of his contract. So we’d be looking at Allen as our starter. That makes me a little uneasy.

    • paperlions - Mar 30, 2014 at 12:13 PM

      Yes, but given the cap situation, overpaying for Miller if he isn’t going to be elite isn’t going to be a solution either. In his play with the Blues thus far, he hasn’t been anything like an elite goalie….he’s had great defense in front of him, doesn’t face many shots or tough shots, and he’s been solid…but no better than that.

  9. savior72 - Mar 30, 2014 at 1:34 PM

    I agree

  10. darksidecowboy - Mar 31, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    Stars won without Benn and Seguin scoring, not bad. This team is fighting for their playoff lives and will be competitive if they make the first round. Could be this years dark horse. Love the pic of Roussel, scored a hell of a goal on Miller, GO STARS!!!

Sign up for Fantasy hockey

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. R. Johansen (2256)
  2. J. Harding (1852)
  3. D. Alfredsson (1540)
  4. J. Quick (1342)
  5. S. Crosby (1337)
  1. S. Bennett (1260)
  2. D. Kuemper (1229)
  3. A. Ovechkin (1093)
  4. B. Schenn (1077)
  5. J. Tootoo (1039)