The Oilers are officially eliminated from playoff contention, plus the latest news on the other Canadian NHL teams.
EDMONTON SUN: The Oilers playoff hopes were officially ended last night with a 3-1 loss to the Anaheim Ducks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Expect the Oilers to be the center of attention in off-season trade rumors in the coming months.
CALGARY HERALD: Mark Cundari made his NHL debut memorable with two points in the Calgary Flames 4-1 win over the Minnesota Wild.
WINNIPEG SUN: The Jets will be without Zach Bogosian (head injury) and Olli Jokinen (high ankle sprain) when they face off tonight against the Buffalo Sabres.
OTTAWA SUN: Don Brennan believes the Senators push for a playoff berth could “save” Penguins forward Matt Cooke from a “beatdown” when the two clubs square off tonight in Ottawa.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Cooke has a well-deserved reputation for dirty play, but he’s cleaned up his act over the past two season in order to avoid permanent suspension. The injury to Karlsson was accidental, despite the laughable efforts of Senators owner Eugene Melnyk to prove otherwise. The Senators won’t waste any effort seeking “retribution” and will focus on clinching a playoff berth.
TORONTO SUN: Phil Kessel is hitting his most productive stride of his career as the Maple Leafs prepare for their first playoff appearance in nine years.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kessel is also eighth overall in the NHL scoring race, and the highest-scoring player from a Canadian NHL team this season. Remind me again why he’s such a horrible player who should be traded away?
MONTREAL GAZETTE: The struggling Canadiens got no rest on Sunday, as coach Michel Therrien had them working on their defensive play.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given how lopsided their recent losses have been, they certainly need to work on their defense.
VANCOUVER PROVINCE: The Canucks may have clinched a playoff berth but there’s plenty to worry about.