20. Buffalo Sabres (20)
Mathematically, the Buffalo Sabres are still alive in the race for a wild card spot in the Eastern Conference, but with several teams ahead of them and games running out, it feels unlikely that they’ll get in. With that said, this was a productive breakout year for Buffalo and its young stars.
19. Nashville Predators (19)
The Nashville Predators had a respectable week, but a loss on Saturday against the Winnipeg Jets is a major blow to the team’s playoff hopes. The Preds are three points out of a playoff spot with three games remaining, so it’s possible, but they missed an important opportunity last week.
18. Calgary Flames (17)
Like the Predators, the Calgary Flames played a game against the Jets last week, but they pulled out the win. Still, Calgary is at a disadvantage in terms of points and games remaining, and that’s a troublesome combination entering the last week of the regular season.
17. Pittsburgh Penguins (16)
The Pittsburgh Penguins had a good week last week, but despite their wins, they made up little to no ground on the New York Islanders and Florida Panthers in the Eastern Conference wild card race. The Pens are playing well, but they are quickly running out of time.