Remember when the New Jersey Devils stormed through the Eastern Conference all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals? Me neither. The memory is certainly fading among their fans after the Devils lost their eight consecutive game to the Boston Bruins on Wednesday.
It's amazing to see how far the team has fallen without its two stars. New Jersey has struggled to replace what it lost when Zach Parise bolted for Minnesota over the summer, and now it has completely plummeted out of the playoff race after losing Ilya Kovalchuk. There's always next year, Devils fans.
Meanwhile in the West, the Ducks squandered a chance to clinch a playoff spot against the worst team in the NHL. No, really. Read on to find out more!
All The NHL Scores
Get caught up on Wednesday's NHL scores with recaps from our network of SB Nation team blogs. Here's a quick glance at the full night of action:
Rangers 3, Maple Leafs 2 (SO)
Bruins 5, Devils 4
Canucks 4, Flames 1
Avalanche 4, Ducks 1
Prior to last night's games, we presented five burning questions regarding the night's action. Here are your cool, soothing answers.
1. Will the New Jersey Devils end their seven-game winless streak?
It got really ugly, really fast for the Devils in Boston. The Bruins were penalized four times and gave New Jersey a lengthy 5-on-3, but the Devils gave up two shorthanded goals and found themselves down 4-0 in the blink of an eye. Both shorties were goals that wouldn't have happened if Kovalchuk was on the ice. And even though the Devils made it interesting late, it's pretty clear that losing their star will cost the Devils another postseason berth.
2. Will the Anaheim Ducks qualify for the playoffs?
The fire that Jean-Sebastien Giguere lit under his team was too much for the Ducks to handle. The Ducks, with the Pacific and the 2nd seed all but wrapped up, had no fight against an Avs team that played their best game in months. The game highlighted pretty clearly that the Avs have been playing without effort all season, and Adrian Dater brings up an important question for the organization:
Question is: why did it take Jiggy slapping team in face to wake up. Why did the coach, GM or captain do it first?— adater (@adater) April 10, 2013
Henrik Lundqvist made sure that didn't happen. He made two big stops late on Nazem Kadri to push the Rangers to a 3-2 shootout win. Both teams still earned points, further solidifying their bids for the postseason.
4. Will the Bruins take over as the Northeast Division leader?
They did, but for how long? The Canadiens and Bruins have gone back and forth most of the season for the lead, so don't expect this race to end anytime soon.
5. Will the Vancouver Canucks extend their three-game winning streak?
They played the Flames. Oh look! I just answered the question indirectly.
What moment from Tuesday night's games will be making headlines in the coming days?
Stat of the Night
This streak is about to end:
It's been 15 years since both the #Rangers and #Leafs were in the playoffs in the same season.— Rob Longley (@longleysunsport) April 10, 2013
Post to Post
- Randy Carlyle doesn't believe in stats. At all.
- NBC Sports will stream the entire Stanley Cup Playoffs online. Excuse me for a moment while I run around jumping and screaming.
- Taylor Hall plays dirty.
- Finally, poof! Jamie McGinn's stick is gone: