|The Wild are 26-6-2 since their turnaround in mid-January, including five straight wins of late. Balanced scoring, air-tight defense and, of course, the steady netminding of Doobie, Doobie, Do!|
|Dear Blueshirts, who said you were allowed to be human! The Rangers have dropped three out of four games. Two big tests this week: Tuesday at Winnipeg, where they will need earplugs, and Thursday against those red-hot Wild.|
|With a league-leading 105 points, the Presidents' Trophy is in the Ducks' grasp if they keep playing like they are right now: three straight wins to wrap up their Eastern road trip.|
|Suddenly the Blues are singing the ... oh, never mind. Four losses in five games, including a 4-2 stinker at home to Columbus on Saturday.|
|The Bolts have a shot at a sweet trick Monday night in Montreal. A win would give them a 5-0-0 sweep over the Habs this season.|
|Which is why I can't rank the Canadiens ahead of the Lightning. The Habs need to finally beat Tampa on Monday night for mental purposes given the possibility of a second-round playoff matchup.|
|Didn't like what I saw from the Blackhawks last week in losses to Philadelphia and Columbus. But the gritty win Sunday night in the Peg was better. Captain Toews to the rescue!|
|They had a four-game win streak (which included wins over Montreal and Tampa) snapped by Calgary on Sunday. Still, looks like the Preds are back on track.|
|I've seen enough to suggest that the defending champs are on the mend. Big one Monday night at Chicago, though.|
|The Jets have dropped two of three games, but I thought they still played a heck of a game Sunday at home to Chicago. The Jets are going to be a handful come playoff time. If they make it, that is.|
|Solid 5-2 win at the Rangers on Sunday afternoon. Those are types of W's that garner you some confidence before playoff time.|
|Back-to-back wins for a Penguins club that was reeling before that. They've got to keep it going to get their heads straight before the playoffs. If Kris Letang is out long-term, that would obviously be a huge blow. Hopefully not.|
|Sunday's win over Detroit snapped a three-game skid. The Isles won just four games in March (4-6-3).|
|Speaking of a lackluster March, the Wings have won just five times in 14 games (5-8-1) heading into their March finale Monday night versus Ottawa.|
|What a weekend it was for the Bruins. Wins over the Rangers and Hurricanes, plus some help on the scoreboard, vaulted them back into a playoff spot, where I think they will remain for good.|
|Back-to-back home losses to Colorado and Dallas made a playoff spot a little less secure ahead of a four-game road trip to St. Louis, Nashville, Chicago and Winnipeg. Buckle up, Canucks fans, you'll find out once and for all about your team on this trip.|
|Huge win at Nashville on Sunday as the never-say-die Flames continue to defy logic and advanced stats. They're a point up on L.A. with 12 days left in the regular season.|
|If the Panthers are going to go down, they're going down swinging, that's for sure. They picked up five out of six points through Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa and now get the head-to-head chance they crave Tuesday at Boston. The Panthers are four points back of the B's for the last wild-card spot and play Boston again on April 9 at home.|
|Oh boy, has the bubble burst? Three straight losses and the Senators looked mighty timid doing it, too. They've got to get their mojo back in a hurry. They're three points back of Boston with a game in hand.|
|The Jackets are sizzling with nine wins in their past 10 games, including six wins in a row against Western teams (Edmonton, Vancouver, Calgary, Anaheim, Chicago and St. Louis). Too little, too late, but it's a reminder that without the league-leading injuries in the first half, these guys would have been in the playoff conversation.|
|The Stars need to figure out, once and for all, whether Kari Lehtonen is their man in goal. That's offseason objective No. 1: Make sense of the goaltending.|
|You know, it's not the end of the world for this young Avs team to take a step back this season. The future is still bright. They'll learn from this.|
|Going to be an interesting offseason perhaps as the Sharks' 10-season playoff streak appears to be coming to an end.|
|Give GM Ron Hextall a chance before you judge him. He's from the school of Dean Lombardi. It's going to take time, but I think he's got an idea.|
|Only because Ron Francis is about the nicest guy you'll ever meet, would be kind of neat to see the Hurricanes win the Connor McDavid lottery.|
|GM Lou Lamoriello knows this, but this team needs a major overhaul up front in terms of bringing youth to the forefront. A top-10 pick in a deep June draft will be a good first step.|
|You better believe that shutout win over his old team, the Stars, felt good for goalie Richard Bachman on Friday night.|
|You can always count on a late-season win over Ottawa by the Leafs no matter what the circumstances, right?|
|Here we go again: Sabres-Coyotes, the rubber match. Will Coyotes fans cheer for the Sabres on Monday night?|
|Well, we know Sabres fans would stand up and cheer for this ranking, right? You better believe it.|
Ovechkin scores 50th as Capitals calm Canes
Blue Jackets activate Calvert (concussion)
Las Vegas ticket drive turns to corporations
Pens' Letang out of hospital, has concussion
OTL: Study finds many hockey helmets unsafe
Lundqvist feels 'pretty solid' in return to net
Custance: Panel picks playoff teams in West
Ovechkin scores 50th goal in win
Alex Ovechkin tallied the sixth 50-goal season of his career as the Capitals defeated the Hurricanes 4-2.
Rangers snap losing skid
The Rangers ended their two-game losing streak with their 3-2 win over the Jets.
Blue Jackets win seventh straight
Jack Johnson's overtime goal lifted the Blue Jackets past the Devils 3-2.
Bruins edge Panthers
Milan Lucic's third-period goal lifted the Bruins past the Panthers 3-2.
Maple Leafs skate past Lightning
The Maple Leafs scored two goals in the first period and went on to beat the Lightning 3-1.
'SportsCenter's' Inside the NHL
John Buccigross, Barry Melrose and Scott Burnside look at the tight wild-card race in the West, check in on the flying-under-the-radar Penguins and take a look at the goalie issues hitting the Red Wings.