The NHL playoff race becomes clearer, plus the latest on Sidney Crosby, Ray Emery, Daniel Briere, Milan Hejduk and more.

Blue Jackets celebrate Mark Letestu's game-winning goal over the Stars.

Blue Jackets celebrate Mark Letestu’s game-winning goal over the Stars.

COLUMBUS DISPATCH/DALLAS MORNING NEWS: The Columbus Blue Jackets kept their playoff hopes alive with a 3-1 victory over the Dallas Stars, eliminating the latter from the post-season race.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: The Detroit Red Wings remains one point up on the Blue Jackets by downing the Nashville Predators 5-2.

TWINCITIES.COM: The Minnesota Wild can clinch a playoff berth with a win tonight over the Edmonton Oilers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wings now sit seventh overall in the Western Conference, one point up on the eighth overall Wild and ninth overall Blue Jackets. The Wild hold a game in hand over the Blue Jackets and Red Wings. 

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: The NY Rangers spoiled the debut of Jared Staal but clinched a playoff berth by downing the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Staals became only the fourth brother act in NHL history to have three brothers on the same team, joining the Bentleys, Plagers and Stastnys.

STLTODAY.COM: The St. Louis Blues kept alive their hopes for home ice advantage in the playoffs with a 4-1 win over the Calgary Flames.

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Brad Staubitz snapped a 1-1 tie with the game-winning goal in the Anaheim Ducks 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.

BOSTON HERALD: The Boston Bruins remained ahead of the Montreal Canadiens for the Northeast Division  lead with a 2-0 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. The win ensures the Bruins will have home ice advantage in the playoffs.

PHILLY.COM: Daniel Briere snapped a 20-game goalless drought as the Flyers downed the NY Islanders 2-1. The loss doesn’t affect the Islanders playoff hopes as they’ve already clinched a berth.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It does, however, ensure the Isles will begin the playoffs on the road.

NORTHJERSEY.COM: Pending UFA forward David Clarkson helped the New Jersey Devils edge the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-2.

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Penguins captain Sidney Crosby has resumed practice with his teammates and could be ready to play in the opening round of the playoffs.

DENVER POST: Milan Hejduk will play in the Colorado Avalanche’s season finale on Saturday in what is likely to be his career-ending game.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Ray Emery’s lower-body injury creates some uncertainty in goal for the Blackhawks.

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2 Responses to NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – Friday, April 26, 2013.

  1. JBB says:

    Might be better for the Isles to be on the road, they seem to perform way better if I am not mistaken?

  2. Sandy says:

    I think the Isles could surprise in the playoffs this year.

    There are always upsets in the first round.

    The Habs had better hope they get 1st in the division and don’t have to play the Leafs in the first round. The Leafs ‘owned’ the Habs this season big time… and the Habs would lose out in the first round..

    A Boston/Leafs first round series would be good to watch. Two big and physical teams with good goaltending.. could be quite entertaining.

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