The Canucks thump the Maple Leafs….Flames shut out the Kings….Senators playoff hopes improving…Jets still in the fight for a playoff berth…Loss of Gill means Habs must spread out blueline tasks…Cam Barker playing catch-up from ankle surgery.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: One has to wonder if this loss, and the Leafs recent slump, forces Toronto GM Brian Burke to shake things up with a trade. The Leafs are only hanging onto a playoff spot by the grace of the equally struggling Washington Capitals, keeping the Jets playoff hopes alive, and allowing lesser teams like the Lightning, Islanders and Canadiens to gain ground in the standings. If the Leafs fail to reverse this skid soon, they’ll be outside the playoff picture.
CALGARY SUN: Miikka Kiprusoff made 28 saves, and Mike Cammalleri scored the game’s only goal, as the Flames edged the LA Kings 1-0.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The win moves the Flames into a tie with the Kings in the standings, and because the Flames have scored more goals, they’re now in eighth overall.
OTTAWA SUN: The Senators odds of making the playoffs this season improve.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If they can avoid another lengthy losing skid, the Senators should make the playoffs. As Jason Spezza pointed out, it’s 100 percent up to he and his teammates to make it happen.
WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: Despite the Jets roster flaws and recent struggles, they’re still in the playoff chase, sitting only two points out of eighth overall in the Eastern Conference.
LE JOURNAL DE MONTREAL: The Canadiens are counting in part on the mobility of P.K.Subban, Alexei Emelin and Raphael Diaz to off-set the loss of Hal Gill’s physical presence on their blueline.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Oilers defenseman Cam Barker is playing catch-up after missing 35 games to ankle surgery.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Something conveniently overlooked by his critics this season.