It seemed like the season would never end last October and November, when game nights were turning into a dreadful situation. The season started out on such a promising note. A convincing win against a team that has had your number since the lockout, regardless of where each of us were in the standings. It seemed to fall apart from there.
Since this recent hot streak started, the season has seem to blow by, with points piling up in route to a playoff spot. Now all we have to do is maintain this pace and control our destiny. The Buffalo Sabres should be focused on what lies in front of them, but they have to wary of those in their rearview mirror.
Ottawa, Florida, and New York are all playing hockey for money and fun right now, as they have no hope of making into the playoffs. New Jersey and Atlanta are teetering on the edge of hope – and would need a meltdown of the Sabres, Carolina, and the Rangers. The Maple Leafs and Hurricanes are a couple of losses and a couple of Sabres victories away from suffering the same fate.
With 18 points left on the table for the Buffalo Sabres, realistically they only need 9-10 of them in order to clinch the playoff spot needed to extend their season. Winning their next two games is key. The Florida Panthers represent two “easy” points. The Panthers have nothing left to play for, and the Sabres should be able to keep up their winning ways if they can get at the Panthers the way they tried against Nashville and won against Montreal. We can put New Jersey to rest by beating them. Thats four points. The Sabres follow up the games against Florida and New Jersey with a game against Toronto. Don’t put anything past Toronto as they are making a suprising late season surge as well. You win that game and you are in total control of your destiny, not only picking up much needed points in your quest for the playoffs, but denying them the hope that they have remaining on their schedule.
The Sabres are going to lose the game against the Rangers. Just plain and simple. Put that in the bank, as well as a loss to the Capitals. After that comes the Hurricanes. I am really not looking forward to dying my hair red, or missing the playoffs this year, so beating the Carolina Hurrinces becomes paramount. Beat the Hurricanes and lock up the playoffs – so that you can end the season against the Lightning, Flyers, and Blue Jackets on a high note.
Its always awesome that all 82 games are required to get into the playoffs, because it gives meaning to a very long season. Lets gift wrap this thing long before then, and punch the ticket to the second season is 78-79 games. Anthing is possible, you just have to take fate by the hand and control destiny.
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