With last night’s win over the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Arizona Coyotes have regained their Wild Card spot. It’s still a tight race though, and the Coyotes have played the most games of anyone in the Western Conference.
Vegas Golden Knights
Record this week: 4-0-0
Upcoming games: Anaheim Ducks (2/23), Edmonton Oilers (2/26), Buffalo Sabres (2/28)
Injuries: Alex Tuch (day-to-day, ankle)
The Vegas Golden Knights have retaken the top spot in the Pacific Division thanks to an impressive win streak. They didn’t have it easy with wins against the New York Islanders, Washington Capitals, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Florida Panthers. They have started making a few moves, including acquiring Alec Martinez from the Los Angeles Kings and sending Cody Eakin to the Winnipeg Jets.
Record this week: 1-1-1
Upcoming games: Montreal Canadiens (2/25), Ottawa Senators (2/27), Toronto Maple Leafs (2/29)
Injuries: Brock Boeser (ribs), Michael Ferland (concussion), Josh Leivo (knee)
Like the Coyotes the Canucks had a rough week that ended with an impressive win. Vancouver followed a regulation loss to the Anaheim Ducks and a shootout loss to Minnesota Wild with a 9-3 win against the first-place Boston Bruins. Vancouver recently acquired Tyler Toffoli who scored his first goal against the Bruins in a 3-point night.
Record this week: 2-1-1
Upcoming games: Los Angeles Kings (2/23), Anaheim Ducks (2/25), Vegas Golden Knights (2/26)
Injuries: Zack Kassian (suspension), Oscar Klefbom (shoulder), Kyle Brodziak (back) Connor McDavid (day-to-day, quadricep), James Neal (foot), Joakim Nygard (hand), Kris Russell (concussion)
The Oilers haven’t been dominant, but they have been able to keep pace with the relatively weak Pacific Division. The Oilers have struggled in goal and it may be worth it for them to upgrade their goaltending before the trade deadline.
Record this week: 1-2-0
Upcoming games: Detroit Redwings (2/23), Boston Bruins (2/25), Nashville Predators (2/27)
Injuries: Travis Hamonic (shoulder), Mark Giordano (day-to-day, hamstring), Juuso Valimaki (knee)
The Flames have had a rough week, and have been overtaken by the Coyotes for the first Wild Card spot in the Western Conference. They are going to have tough matches against the Bruins and the Predators this week. Fortunately for the Flames, they have been able to still score goals, which they will need as the season comes to an end.
San Jose Sharks
Record this week: 1-3-0
Upcoming games: New York Islanders (2/23), Philadelphia Flyers (2/25), New Jersey Devils (2/27)
Injuries: Melker Karlsson (day-to-day, leg), Erik Karlsson (thumb), Tomas Hertl (knee), Logan Couture (ankle), Logan Couture (ankle), Dalton Prout (upper body)
The Sharks have had a rough week and things won’t be easier next week. Last season it looked like the Sharks had made all the moves necessary to dominate the Pacific Division, but this year it looks like they will be sellers at the trade deadline.
Record this week: 1-3-0
Upcoming games: Vegas Golden Knights (2/23), Edmonton Oilers (2/25), Pittsburgh Penguins (2/28)
Injuries: Cam Fowler (day-to-day, lower body), Erik Gudbranson (upper body), Ryan Kesler (hip), Patrick Eaves (illness)
The Ducks 5-1 win over the Canucks suggests they may be ready to play the role of spoilers in the Pacific Division. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to follow that up with a win over the Flames, but they have a chance this week as they play both the Golden Knights and Oilers. They have started selling and have sent Ondrej Kase to the Boston Bruins.
Los Angeles Kings
Record this week: 1-2-1
Upcoming games: Edmonton Oilers (2/23), Pittsburgh Penguins (2/26)
Injuries: Jeff Carter (day-to-day, lower body)
The Kings won their outdoor game against the Colorado Avalanche and struggled since then. They have started making some moves in sending Alec Martinez to the Golden Knights, a move that makes the Golden Knights more dangerous, and re-signing Martin Frk to a two-year deal.