With the Ottawa Senators tucked away in Banff, Alberta on a team bonding session ahead of Saturday’s game in Winnipeg, there is a sliver of good news. With 4 of the 5 teams directly ahead of the Sens in action on Thursday night, they didn’t lose any ground on the final wild card spot.
The Columbus Blue Jackets, who held the final wild card position heading into the night, was dominated by the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks by a score of 6-1 and fell out of the spot into 9th place because…
The Detroit Red Wings fell 3-2 in overtime to the Colorado Avalanche. Andre Benoit had the OT winner for the Avs. The point moved the Wings into a tie for the 2nd wild card spot but get the nod ahead of Columbus on the basis of having played one fewer game.
The Washington Capitals, who sit one point behind the Wings and Blue Jackets, also lost 3-0 to the Boston Bruins.
The Tampa Bay Lightning also lost, although 9 points clear of the Senators they would have to go on a monumental slide for the Senators to catch them.
So, it could have been much worse for the Senators. They still sit 4 points back of the 2nd wildcard spot, still have 4 teams to jump over. It is no longer in their own control, and they are going to have to get help on a nightly basis if they are going to draw closer to a post-season berth.
The help could come, but if they don’t take care of business on their own then all the help in the world won’t matter a bit. That starts on Saturday afternoon in Winnipeg