NHL Games of the Week: Saturday, March 25th – Friday, March 31st

NHL Games of the Week

Brendan Gallagher #11 of the Montreal Canadiens celebrates his third period goal with team mate Tomas Plekanec #14 as Erik Karlsson #65, Dion Phaneuf #2 and Craig Anderson #41 of the Ottawa Senators defend the net at Canadian Tire Centre on March 18, 2017 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images

Mick Kern from NHL Network Radio here. We’re running down the must-hear NHL games of the week, including the Senators at the Canadiens and the Blues visiting the Coyotes:

 

Saturday, March 25th – Ottawa Senators at Montreal Canadiens
7:00 PM Eastern – Sirius XM 91

These two teams are going to meet up in Ottawa this upcoming December in the great outdoors to play in the NHL 100 Classic.  But why wait until then for exciting hockey?   The Habs and Sens have been battling each other for the Atlantic Division crown for most of this season.  They met up twice last week, with Montreal winning both games.   Yet the Habs can’t shake the Sens.  This is like a mini-playoff series in March. 

Sunday, March 26th – New York Rangers at Anaheim Ducks
9:00 PM Eastern – Sirius XM 220

The way things are trending, the Atlantic Division champion will be facing the New York Rangers in the opening round of the NHL 2017 Playoffs.  This could all change, but the Rangers will be in the post-season.  As will the Ducks, who are once again in the running for first place in the Pacific Division. There’s a long way to go, but this matchup would make for an entertaining Stanley Cup Final this June.

Monday, March 27th – Chicago Blackhawks at Tampa Bay Lightning
7:30 PM Eastern – Sirius XM 91

Back in October, many would have tabbed this to be the 2017 Stanley Cup Final.  While the Blackhawks are a legitimate contender to win it all this spring, the Lightning are life-and-death to qualify for the playoffs in the Eastern Conference.  Tampa Bay needs this two points very badly, while Chicago would like to solidify their hold on first in the Central Division.

Tuesday, March 28th – Ottawa Senators at Philadelphia Flyers
7:00 PM Eastern – Sirius XM 91

After missing the playoff cut last season, the Senators will return to the playoffs this time around. The question is, where will they finish and which team will they clash with in the first round?  The Flyers looked to be dead in the water not that long ago, but recent victories have put the funeral on hold.  The two points up for grabs tonight are crucial to keep the Flyers’ playoff hopes alive.

Wednesday, March 29th – St. Louis Blues at Arizona Coyotes
10:30 PM Eastern – Sirius XM 91

While the Coyotes are looking forward to next season, the Blues are trying to nail down a Western Conference playoffs spot.  Things look good for St. Louis; now the question is do they finish third in the Central, or slip down to one of the Western wildcard slots?  The Blues are basically playing .500 hockey on the road, while Arizona have played similar hockey in their own barn, so this game is not necessarily a gimme for St. Louis.

Thursday, March 30th – New York Islanders at Philadelphia Flyers
7:00 PM Eastern – Sirius XM 91

If the Islanders hope to slip into the playoffs, they’re going to need to win road games such as this one tonight in Philadelphia.  The Islanders sport an impressive record at home, but slip below .500 when away from the friendly confines.  They also don’t want to let Philly escape with 2 points, and tighten up the Eastern race for one of the final wildcard invites.

Friday, March 31st – Pittsburgh Penguins at New York Rangers
7:00 PM Eastern – Sirius XM 91

These two Metropolitan Division rivals are once again enjoying very good regular seasons.  The defending Stanley Cup champion Penguins are in the running for first place in the Met, while the Rangers looked to be locked into the first wildcard spot in the Eastern Conference…which would mean a first round meeting with the Atlantic Division champions

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