The Washington Capitals won the Southeast Division title on Tuesday in a very fitting way: by greatly inhibiting the hopes of the only other team in their division that has a chance to make the playoffs.
That came with a 5-3 win against the Winnipeg Jets, a scrappy squad that was hoping to win the Southeast with a late rush.
Much like the Vancouver Canucks with the Northwest Division, some Capitals fans might feel a little wistful tonight. This is the last year that they’ll be able to take advantage of the “Southleast/Southeasy” after winning the crown in five of their last six seasons.
It was a group effort for Washington, as usual suspects Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom (one-goal, one-assist performances apiece) combined with lesser-known threats Jason Chimera and Mathieu Perreault (also two-point nights for both).
We’ll see how the rest of tonight’s games affect the Jets’ outlook.
Flames keep showing life, Stars stumble once again
If you think the Dallas Stars are struggling because of defense more than anything else, then you’ll make sure to keep the video above “on file.”
There Kari Lehtonen was, helpless on a 2-on-0 rush for the Calgary Flames, which Johnny Gaudreau finished with calm and ease. For some, that goal is the symbol of the Stars’ season.
Either way, it was a painful goal in the Flames’ 2-1 win against the Stars. Calgary won despite Dallas firing 30 shots on goal versus the Flames’ 20.
One team climbing, the other stumbling
With that, the Flames are now on a four-game winning streak. Since falling to 5-10-1 on Nov. 12, the Flames have gone 9-3-1 in their last 13 games, pushing them to 14-13-2 overall. Gaudreau coming back is the icing on the cake after Chad Johnson really took charge of the Flames’ top job.
During a similar span, the Stars can’t seem to get it together. Dallas stood at 6-6-3 after beating the Oilers 3-2 on Nov. 11. They’re now 10-11-6, essentially standing in place as a .500 team.
Dallas can’t seem to get momentum going, a thought that might have left them envious of the team on the other end of the ice on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, it wasn’t just about Jack Eichel vs. Connor McDavid. Instead, it was a clash between a fleet of young scorers who were in their prime, with the Buffalo Sabres coming up on top against the Edmonton Oilers.