Apr 19, 2013, 3:11 PM EST
So it comes down to this. Since the Flyers managed to get
blanked on Thursday night by a New Jersey Devils squad that hadn’t picked up a
win in their previous 10 tries, they will need some remarkable luck to remain
in playoff contention for much longer.
The New York Rangers can mathematically eliminate Philly
with a win in any of their next five games, or any two points actually, which
would be bad enough on its own. Considering the Rags’ only remaining opponents
are all in similar or worse position than the Flyers, this seems incredibly
likely to happen.
It could all be over as quickly as tonight while the Rangers
are in Buffalo, playing a Sabres team that is actually the hottest opponent left
on their slate. From there New York has two dates with New Jersey, and one each
against Carolina and Florida, the two worst clubs in the Eastern Conference.
That’s not even looking at other scenarios, as Philly trails Jersey, Buffalo, and Winnipeg — the latter by the same number of points as New York. At this point it’s not a matter of who as much as when, and the countdown is on.
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