New York Islanders(29-27-7) vs Montreal Canadiens(23-29-10)
This has to be a must win for the Islanders tonight, they are now four points behind the Blue Jackets for a wild card spot and nine away from New Jersey, they continue to struggle against some mediocre teams, and it is starting to hurt them now. The Islanders defense plus goaltending has been their biggest crutch, surprisingly the only defensemen the Islanders added were Brian Davidson and added another forward Chris Wagner. Terrible moves by the club that do not improve their roster one bit right now. The Islanders are 3-5-2 in their last ten, losing their last game to the Devils. The Canadiens are 2-4-4 in their last ten dropping their last two games in overtime. The bad part about playing a team that is out of the race is that they can play much looser and laid back, and when a team plays with no pressure, good things happen. Anti Neimi gets the start tonight for Montreal and the Islanders go with Jaroslav Halak with Greiss out. Like I said a must win for New York, have to go with the hungry playoff team. Going Islanders.
Buffalo Sabres(19-33-11) vs Tampa Bay Lightning(43-17-3)
The Sabres are another team that is out of the playoff race and since they have come to grips with yet another no playoff season the Sabres are 5-4-1 in their last ten and in those last ten games they did, in fact, beat Tampa Bay last week, 5-3. The Lighting, on the other hand, will get to debut their two newest members, Ryan McDonagh and JT Miller a blockbuster trade that makes this team even better. The Lightning are without Nikita Kucherov tonight though as he left last game with an apparent upper-body injury. The Lighting are still within the top of the league and 7-3-0 in their last ten on a four-game win streak. Do not see Buffalo coming back to Tampa and winning here tonight, not twice in a row, and not when Tampa is on a win streak. Going Tampa Bay.
Detroit Red Wings(26-26-10) vs St. Louis Blues(34-26-4)
The Red Wings are another non-playoff team and honestly, they have to worry you a bit because they have so much speed, youth and just playing for some pride here and they are 5-3-2 in their last ten on a two-game winning streak. Also, Blues got shacked Tuesday night, Allen another poor performance, and with their move at the deadline, leaves so many Blues fans and even players scratching their heads. The Blues shipped a top-six veteran winger out for essentially nothing in replacement. A playoff team shipping a veteran forward out, weird. The Blues are now two points out of a playoff spot, on a five-game losing streak and 2-7-0 in their last ten. The Blues are struggling and with their recent losing streak and turn of events, losing their playoff spot, management in St. Louis need to be concerned. Tonight, I am honestly going Detroit. Side note Detroit turned Tomas Tatar, Petr Mrazek into five picks. Good job by them.
Calgary Flames(32-23-9) vs Colorado Avalanche(33-24-5)
Both of these teams are outside looking in, by just a hair, Avalanche by two points, Calgary by one point, a must-win situation for both teams. The Flames cannot continue this back and forth streak they have been in and out of a playoff spot all year, now as the Wild continue to play great, Stars play decent and Ducks I believe get in the Flames chances getting in is slim right now. They need to buckle down here for the last 20 games and make a run. The Avalanche are not making the playoffs, they got hot and over exceeded expectations which is great. Nathan MacKinnon did as much as he could, got hurt and the team struggled, bright future for Colorado though. The Flames are 4-5-1 in their last ten coming off a loss to Dallas, and the Avalanche are 4-5-1 as well coming off a win vs Vancouver. Tonight I am going with one of the better road teams in the NHL, going Flames.