The Chase: Heavy Slate of Metropolitan Division Games on Tap

By Chris Pennington on March 7, 2020 at 9:05 am
Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski (8) skates during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome.
Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
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The Chase is your morning report on where the Blue Jackets stand in the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs race. What happened, what's next, and who to cheer for.

This is a big day for the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Yes, the boys in blue have a tough road game against the high-powered Edmonton Oilers. On top of that, though, every other team in the Metropolitan Division skates, setting the stage for some playoff standing shakeup come the end of the day.

Here's where we stand on Saturday, March 7.

  GP GR W L OT PTS RW ROW STRK L10 Make Playoffs [#]
WASHINGTON CAPITALS 67 15 40 20 7 87 30 36 OT1 3-5-2 99.90%
PHILADELPHIA FLYERS 67 15 40 20 7 87 30 35 W8 9-1-0 99.90%
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS 66 16 39 21 6 84 28 36 W2 4-6-0 95.20%
BOSTON BRUINS 68 14 43 13 12 98 37 43 W4 8-2-0 100.00%
TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING 67 15 42 20 5 89 34 40 W1 5-5-0 100.00%
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS 67 15 35 24 8 78 27 34 L1 5-5-0 87.30%
COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS 68 14 32 21 15 79 24 32 L1 2-4-4 44.90%
NEW YORK ISLANDERS 66 16 35 23 8 78 24 32 L3 2-6-2 49.00%
NEW YORK RANGERS 66 16 36 27 4 76 30 35 W1 6-4-0 32.10%
CAROLINA HURRICANES 65 17 35 25 5 75 25 30 L1 3-5-2 66.40%
FLORIDA PANTHERS 67 15 33 26 8 74 28 30 L1 3-6-1 21.90%

p - Clinched President's Trophy; x - Clinched Playoff Spot

No games occurred last night with any Metropolitan team in the playoff hint - setting up for a huge slate of games tonight. We still stand with the Blue Jackets in the first wild card spot, believe it or not, even with a 2-4-4 record in their last ten games.

However, they're not even close to being in the clear yet. The New York Islanders are just one point behind with two games in hand, the New York Rangers are three points behind with two games in hand, and the Carolina Hurricanes are four points behind with three games in hand.

Long story short, all three teams behind the Blue Jackets could be ahead of Columbus in the standings if they catch up to them in games played, and win those games. So - let's get to point-grabbing, boys!

Tonight's Game(s) of Interest

Home Away Who to Cheer for
NY ISLANDERS (35–23–8, 78p) CAROLINA (35–25–5, 75p) The Hurricanes, but this is a tough one. As long as it doesn't go to overtime - we should be happy. They are four points behind the Blue Jackets with three games in hand, and the Islanders are one point behind with two games in hand. Technically, the Islanders have a better positioning to jump the Blue Jackets, so we'd want them to be taken down.
PITTSBURGH (39-21-6, 84p) WASHINGTON (40-20-7, 87p) Washington. The Penguins are still in range to be caught by the Blue Jackets, and the Capitals are too far away.
NY RANGERS (36-27-4, 76p) NEW JERSEY (27-28-12, 66p) Speak of the devil! New Jersey winning this game would be huge, stunting the hot Rangers and keeping them at bay from any wild card spot.
MONTREAL (31-29-9, 71p) FLORIDA (33-26-8, 74p) The Canadiens. Montreal is likely out of the playoffs at this point (most games played in the league, eight points out of a spot). The Panthers still have a legitimate shot at the postseason, so we need them to keep losing.
PHILADELPHIA (40-20-7, 87p) BUFFALO (29–30–8, 66p) The Sabres. Since Buffalo is out of a playoff spot, them winning does no harm, and the Flyers losing is a good thing.
EDMONTON (23-36-24, 80p) COLUMBUS (32-21-15, 79p) The boys in blue.

Blue Jackets Playoff Odds

Make It In 2nd Rnd Conf. Finals SC Finals Win SC Win Metro 2nd Metro 3rd Metro WC1 WC2
44.90% 17.20% 7.50% 3.30% 1.50% 0.0% 0.5% 4.1% 17.7% 22.5%

Odds courtesy of

Two more huge games on this Western Canadian road trip for the Blue Jackets. Can they win their next two contests and leave the country with 5/6 possible points?

That question will be partially answered tonight. Willing to stay up late for it, dear reader?

Today's stress ball: Nothing like two all-star defensemen saucing from the terrace, yeah?

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