• We’ve reached the final game of the season with all sorts of playoff seeding still on the line. The Red Wings and Blackhawks meet with Detroit having a chance to finish anywhere from fourth to sixth in the Western Conference while Chicago could take fifth or sixth. Here’s how it all breaks down…

    If the Red Wings lose in regulation, earning no points in the standings, they’ll be the sixth seed and play the third seed. The third seed has yet to be decided, with three Pacific Division teams still battling for it. More on that below.

    If the Red Wings lose in overtime or the shootout, they finish fifth, with Chicago taking sixth and the Nashville Predators getting the fourth spot.

    If the Red Wings win, they temporarily jump into fourth place and lock the Blackhawks into sixth place. Detroit’s final seeding would then hinge upon the outcome of the Predators’ matchup with the Colorado Avalanche tonight. If Nashville gets a single point out of that game, they’d pass back over the Wings into fourth, with Detroit dropped back to fifth.

    Out in the Pacific, which only matters to Detroit if the Red Wings don’t get a point today, the Phoenix Coyotes can clinch the division and a third consecutive first-round matchup with the Wings by winning in Minnesota. The Coyotes also get the third seed with a point and a San Jose Sharks win against the Los Angeles Kings. The Kings need a win over the Sharks combined a loss in by Phoenix, while the Sharks need a win over LA and a Phoenix loss in regulation.

    The Detroit – Chicago game is at 1:00 PM on NBC. Phoenix at Minnesota starts at 8:00 PM. Nashville is at Colorado at 9:00 PM. Los Angeles at San Jose kicks off at 10:30 on NBCSN.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 2:52 AM
  • Lineup note per [twitter]AnsarKhanMLive[/twitter]

    Riley Sheahan will make his NHL debut today for the Wings vs. Chicago, Ken Holland tells M-Live. Mursak is out, along with Cleary (knee).

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 4:00 AM
  • Fantastic PK to start the game after a stupid mistake by Sheahan in his first shift.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 5:19 AM
  • Holmstrom already getting the usual treatment. Sheahan looking good around the net, trying to make up for earlier.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 5:22 AM
  • Not loving the rebound Howard gave up there but that felt like a bit of a broken play.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 5:25 AM
  • I have no issues with Hossa in the box!

    SYfanSD April 7, 2012 5:26 AM
  • Franzen continues to be infuriating, with a weak-ass chance from the side of the net. Wings PP coming up though on a stupid play by Seabrook.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 6:19 AM
  • In case you missed it over on Twitter, if the Wings pull off the comeback today, I’ll raffle off a DH.N shirt to one of [twitter]detroithockey96[/twitter]’s followers. Following the lead of the TPL guys.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 6:46 AM
  • Must be getting close to playoff time, Franzen is waking up.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 7:04 AM
  • Wings finally get two men around the net and capitalize. 30 seconds from Nashville.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 7:24 AM
  • Alright, it’s Wings and Preds in the first round. Home ice on the line now and the outcome means nothing (standings-wise) to Chicago.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 7:26 AM
  • Shootout to decide playoff seeding. Just what the NHL wants.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 7:35 AM
  • Fifth seed it is.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 7:42 AM
  • I’m a little confused about the Red Wings’ 3-2 shootout loss to the Blackhawks this afternoon.

    I feel like the Wings didn’t play to their potential but I can’t point to a lot of specific plays that back that up. It was a solid game by both teams and in the end Detroit just didn’t do enough, or didn’t get the bounces, or whatever you want to call it.

    It was a much better effort than we saw Thursday against the Devils, though, so I’m comfortable going into the playoffs off of that game.

    Speaking of the playoffs… We don’t have to wait for any of the night games to know what the Wings will be doing now. They’ve locked up the fifth seed and will visit the fourth-seeded Nashville Predators to open the first round.

    I agree that Nashville is a very good team but I disagree with those thinking it’d be better to have dropped to sixth to take the Pacific Division champion. You don’t pick your poison at this time of year. Nashville is a known quantity and they’re not far away. There are pluses to go with the negatives.

    Supposedly the schedule will be released tomorrow.

    Clark Rasmussen April 7, 2012 8:08 AM