It looked like the Lightning were going to run away with the Atlantic Division, but the Bruins have made things interesting. That leaves the Leafs jammed in third ahead of the pile of crap that makes up the rest of the division.
1st: Tampa Bay Lightning
31-12-3 (65 points) / +43 goal differential
The Lightning are going through their first cold streak of the season. They came out of their bye week last week and lost 4-1 to Vegas and 5-2 to Minnesota, extending their losing streak to three games. Their longest losing streak all season to date was just two games. To make matters worse, Tampa is one game into an eight-game road trip and the Bruins are gaining ground quickly.
2nd: Boston Bruins
27-10-8 (62 points) / +38 goal differential
The Bruins are rolling. They won all three games they played last week, beating Montreal 4-1, the Islanders 5-2, and Montreal again 4-1 on the road. Boston has now earned at least a point in 16-consecutive games, dating all the way back to Dec. 12. As of today, they’re only three points behind the Lightning for first place in the Atlantic Division and they have a game in hand. The Bruins… Are… Actually Good?
3rd: Toronto Maple Leafs
26-17-5 (57 points) / +14 goal differential
The Leafs came out of their bye week with frustrating back-to-back overtime losses against St. Louis and Philadelphia, but got themselves back into the win column with a come-from-behind win over the Senators on Saturday night to snap their four-game losing streak. There isn’t much pressure coming from behind them in the standings, but the Bruins have made it unlikely the Leafs will host a playoff series in the first round.
4th: Florida Panthers
19-20-6 (44 points) / -19 goal differential
The Panthers came out of their bye week with an overtime win at home against Vegas and a loss in Nashville. They’re kinda sorta alive in the playoff hunt, but they have to jump the entire Metro Division to get into a wild card spot. So, I mean, yeah. The pretty much need the Leafs to collapse for it to happen.
5th: Montreal Canadiens
19-22-6 (44 points) / -28 goal differential
In the same boat as Florida is Montreal, who can, like, sort of be considered still in the playoff race. But, come on. They’re bad. They went 1-2-1 last week, with two losses to Boston, a win over Washington, and a loss in overtime to the Islanders in which they doubled New York in shots.
6th: Detroit Red Wings
18-20-9 (39 points) / -18 goal differential
The Red Wings lost both games they played last week, getting dropped at home by Dallas and Carolina. They also put David Booth on waivers today, sending shockwaves around the league that David Booth was, in fact, still in the NHL in 2018.
7th: Ottawa Senators
15-20-9 (39 points) / -36 goal differential
The Sens dropped both of their games last week coming out of the bye week. They lost 4-1 at home to St. Louis and then allowed the Leafs to score three goals in the third period for a come-from-behind win. And yes, this was a home game for Ottawa. Like, on paper it said they were at home and it was hosted in Ottawa, but let’s be serious, it was a road game.
8th: Buffalo Sabres
11-26-9 (31 points) / -59 goal differential
The Sabres are terrible and who the hell even cares when they did last week. Let’s talk about how great it is for them that Jack Eichel has 10 more points in eight more games than Auston Matthews does!