So, it has come to our attention that some people want to know why we're rooting against the New York Rangers.
It all comes down to the draft pick. Since Columbus receives New York's first round pick, which is not lottery protected, we're hoping for the Rangers to miss the playoffs by a point, win the lottery, and hand us our choice of a rich, deep draft class. (And if the Jackets should miss the playoffs as well, hey, the odds get even better. But we're greedy, and we want to have our playoff cake and eat it too.)
So, with that said, in the East, things are pretty simple. We 're looking for regulation wins unless noted.
We're rooting for Carolina against the Rangers
New Jersey against Toronto in OT or a Shootout (regulation helps, but the extra bonus point would add a few percentage points.)
Islanders over Tampa Bay
Philadelphia over Winnipeg in OT
Washington over Florida in OT
Meanwhile, the Western Conference, the Jackets road got a LOT harder with the loss last night. Even OT would have helped, but it is what it is. They're going to need to win almost the whole schedule, and they're going to need help, but things aren't totally impossible yet.
Maybe it's time to buy Hockey Jobu some fresh rum...
Los Angeles over Edmonton
Colorado over Phoenix
Chicago over Nashville
Calgary over Vancouver