Capitals Secure Final Eastern Conference Playoff Position

The Washington Capitals secured the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference with a 4-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning, while the Detroit Red Wings and Philadelphia Flyers also vie for playoff positions with 87 points each, and the Pittsburgh Penguins and New York Islanders continue their respective playoff battles.

Saturday night was a big one for the Washington Capitals. They clinched the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference, edging out the Tampa Bay Lightning with a 4-2 victory at Capital One Arena.

Sonny Milano was the man of the hour, netting two goals for the Capitals. Then, veteran defenseman John Carlson came through with a power-play goal. This broke the 2-2 deadlock, 8:29 into the third period. Now, the Capitals are sitting pretty with 87 points and just two games left in the regular season. They’re neck and neck with the Detroit Red Wings in points. But, they’ve got a leg up with a 30-27 lead in regulation wins—the all-important first tie-breaker.

Speaking of the Red Wings, they pulled off a thrilling 5-4 overtime victory against the Toronto Maple Leafs. This action went down at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto. Captain Dylan Larkin was the hero, scoring the winning power-play goal just 41 seconds into overtime. Larkin didn’t stop there; he also dished out an assist. Alex DeBrincat chipped in with two goals. On the Leafs’ side, Auston Matthews netted his 69th goal of the season. Fun fact: the NHL hasn’t seen a 70-goal scorer since the 1992-93 season when Alexander Mogilny and Teemu Selanne both hit that mark. With two games left, Matthews has a shot at making history.

The Philadelphia Flyers are also in the mix with 87 points. However, they’re trailing behind the Red Wings since they’ve played an extra game. Their latest victory was a nail-biter—a 1-0 win over the New Jersey Devils. Samuel Ersson was a brick wall in net, stopping 20 shots for the shutout. Travis Konecny scored the lone goal, securing the win at the Wells Fargo Center.

The Flyers have just one game left on their schedule. Meanwhile, the Pittsburgh Penguins were in a prime position until they stumbled, losing 6-4 to the Boston Bruins at home. Now, they’re a point behind, with 86 points and two games left to play.

Despite a tough 3-2 shootout loss to the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden, the New York Islanders are holding steady. They’re in third place in the Metropolitan Division, clinging to that crucial playoff spot. With 90 points and two games remaining, they’re not out of the woods yet.

So, yeah, the race for the playoffs is heating up. Every game, every point, could be the difference between making it or breaking it. Let’s see how this all plays out, shall we?

Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson is a Senior Writer for HockeyMonitor. With a background in Sports Media, Alex joined the team in 2022. He focuses on providing the latest hockey news, game scores, and fresh NHL trade rumors.

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