Here are some key games for SiriusXM NHL Network Radio fans this week across the league, including Nashville at Vegas, Toronto at St. Louis, and San Jose at Pittsburgh.
Saturday, February 16th – Nashville Predators at Vegas Golden Knights
10:00 PM Eastern – SiriusXM 204
The last two Stanley Cup runners-up meet up in Las Vegas, a possible preview of the 2019 Western Conference Final. As usual, the path to the Cup Final will be a tough one in the West. The Predators are in a battle with the Winnipeg Jets for top spot in the Central Division, while Golden Knights look to be ensconced in third place in the Pacific Division.
Sunday, February 17th – St. Louis Blues at Minnesota Wild
3:00 PM Eastern – SiriusXM 91
Wild head coach Bruce Boudreau recently guaranteed that his team would make the playoff cut this spring. They’re in the midst of a real dog-fight for that post-season invite, and tonight host a resurgent Blues squad that have passed by the Wild in the standings.
Monday, February 18th – Tampa Bay Lightning at Columbus Blue Jackets
7:30 PM Eastern – SiriusXM 91
On any given night, the Lightning seem to be up 6-0 on an opponent, with half the game to go. They win at home, they win on the road; if the league still played neutral site games, the Bolts would probably win those as well. Tonight they take their high flying act into Columbus, and face off with a Blue Jackets team that are in a tussle with the Penguins for third spot in the Metropolitan Division.
Tuesday, February 19th – Toronto Maple Leafs at St. Louis Blues
8:00 PM Eastern – SiriusXM 219
Two old Norris division opponents clash in St. Louis this evening. The rumours about the Blues demise were greatly exaggerated, though it took the team changing head coaches before they caught fire. They face a Maple Leafs’ team that recently added veteran defenceman Jake Muzzin, and may not be done on the trading front. Toronto isn’t expected to catch the powerhouse Tampa Bay Lightning for first in the Atlantic Division, but they’ll most likely enjoy home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs.
Wednesday, February 20th – New York Islanders at Calgary Flames
9:30 PM Eastern – SiriusXM 167
The 1972 expansion cousins are in Southern Alberta this evening, with both teams riding high in their respective divisions. The Islanders have been on top of the Metropolitan Division seemingly for months, while the Flames are fighting with the Sharks for the Pacific Division crown. Yes, this would make for a great Stanley Cup Final.
Thursday, February 21st – San Jose Sharks at Pittsburgh Penguins
7:00 PM Eastern – SiriusXM 219
Are the Sharks a dark horse to win the Stanley Cup this spring? Yes, and no. Yes, because they’ve only been to the Cup Final once, falling to the Penguins in 2016, and people often take San Jose for granted. No, because they’re not a dark horse, but a legitimate contender for the big prize. But what about Pittsburgh? They’ve had an up and down season so far, and have to be careful that they don’t slip out of the Eastern Conference playoff picture.
Friday, February 22nd – Winnipeg Jets at Vegas Golden Knights
10:00 PM Eastern – SiriusXM 91
A good one to settle in and watch on a Friday night, as the Jets are in Las Vegas. Winnipeg are in the midst of a season long struggle with the Nashville Predators for top spot in the tough Central Division. Last May, the Golden Knights took five games to dispose of the Jets in the Western Conference Final, and don’t think Winnipeg doesn’t remember.