Here’s the deal for the Boston Bruins:
They need to beat Detroit tonight at TD Garden.
They won’t be mathematically eliminated if they don’t, but they’ll be pretty close. A Detroit victory of any kind would clinch a playoff berth for the Red Wings, leaving only the Flyers for the B’s to catch for the final wild-card spot in the East.
The Flyers host Toronto tonight — a winnable game for Philly, to say the least. The Bruins and Flyers are currently tied with 91 points, but the Flyers have a game in hand.
Even if the Bruins only lose to Detroit in overtime or a shootout, and even if the Leafs somehow manage to beat Philly in regulation, the Bruins still wouldn’t control their destiny.
Look, we’re not going to run down all the potential scenarios here. The Bruins’ website has already done that.
The bottom line is the B’s could really use a win.
“The biggest thing is you have to be confident, and you have to believe,” said forward Patrice Bergeron, per CSN New England. “But at the same time there are no more chances here. We have to seize it, and go out there and do it.”
What happens if the B’s fail to “seize it” remains to be seen.
And, of course, there will be questions about the future of head coach Claude Julien.
We’re not there yet.
The Bruins finish the season Saturday afternoon at home to Ottawa. No matter what happens tonight, they’ll still be alive when the puck drops in their 82nd game.
A loss tonight, though, and they’ll be hanging by the thinnest of threads.