Senators clinch playoff spot, move ahead of Bruins

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First, the Ottawa Senators made sure that they’ll make the playoffs by clinching a spot. By beating the Boston Bruins 2-1 via a shootout, they put themselves in a solid position to grab home-ice for a round.

While the contest hasn’t been a thrill ride, the Senators deserve some credit for getting this key win with Erik Karlsson out of the lineup.

As a bonus, Viktor Stalberg also returned during OT after a hard hit by Adam McQuaid. Senators GM Pierre Dorion has to love that Alex Burrows‘ goal was the tying tally.

A lot of things came up in Ottawa’s favor on this one. They managed a sweep of the Bruins, a swing that may just make the difference in the race for second in the Atlantic.

Granted, there are still plenty of variables that can play out during the final few days of 2016-17.

Here’s an update on the race for second:

2. Senators – 96 points (37 ROW, 43 W) in 80 games
3. Bruins – 95 points (42 ROW, 44 W) in 81 games

Leafs – 93 points in 80 games after loss to Lightning.

That’s quite the edge for the Sens, especially if Toronto ends up losing. The Senators host the Rangers on Saturday and then visit the Islanders on Sunday. The Bruins close out 2016-17 by facing the Capitals at home on Saturday.