Atlantic: Four division teams preparing for playoffs

by Ian Altenbaugh
on

 

Photo: Star forwards Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Claude Giroux of the Philadelphia Flyers will do battle in the first round of the 2012 NHL Playoffs (courtesy of

Jeanine Leech/Icon SMI)

Four of the five teams in the Atlantic Division made the 2012 NHL playoffs. The Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins get started on Wednesday night, while the New York Rangers open on Thursday night and the New Jersey Devils begin on Friday.

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Pacific: Smith superb between the pipes for Coyotes

by Andrew Knoll
on

 

Photo: Phoenix Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith received much applause in the past week following a three shutout performance for his club as they battle for the Pacific title (courtesy of

Chris Pondy/Icon SMI)

While Phoenix Coyotes goaltender Mike Smith's name might not grab you, his play of late has taken the Coyotes by the lapels and dragged them into the playoffs and a shot at the Pacific Division title. For his strong play this past week, Smith was named one of the Pacific's three stars of the week for Mar. 30-Apr. 5.

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Northwest: Sedin provides big assist in Canucks push for first

by Blake Benzel
on

 

Photo: Vancouver Canucks captain Henrik Sedin has his team in contention for the President's Trophy thanks to a seven point week (courtesy of

Bob Frid/Icon SMI)

With just the Canucks heading to the playoffs from the Northwest Division, the other teams haven’t been playing for anything more than pride. That doesn’t mean that the other teams have been slacking off, though, with two of our three stars of the week for Mar. 30 – Apr. 5 coming from non-playoff teams.

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Central: Umberger finishing strong for Blue Jackets

by Andrew Sykes
on

 

Photo: Columbus Blue Jackets forward R.J. Umberger has struck the celebratory pose several times in recent games as the Blue Jackets wrap up a disappointing season on a high note (courtesy of

Jason Mowry/Icon SMI)

In what was an up-and-down week for the top four teams in the NHL's Central Division, it is a member of the last-place Columbus Blue Jackets who walks away with the first star of the week for Mar 30-Apr 5.

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Southeast: Bogosian rounding into form for the Jets

by Cory Lavalette
on

 

Photo: Winnipeg Jets defenseman Zach Bogosian has taken his game to another level this season for the improving Jets (courtesy of

Mark LoMoglio/Icon SMI)

The Winnipeg Jets fell short of the playoffs in the season's final month, but that hasn't kept a couple of the Jets' core players from thriving in the last weeks of the season. And the Capitals — who clinched a playoff berth Thursday — got clutch play from an oft-criticized forward to avoid missing the postseason. Here are the Southeast Division's three stars for the week of March 30 – April 5.

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