The Battle of East Versus West... of the Rockies

Matt ClearyContributor IMarch 28, 2009

VANCOUVER, CANADA - NOVEMBER 11:  Dion Phaneuf #3 of the Calgary Flames and Ryan Kesler #17 of the Vancouver Canucks exchange words on November 11, 2006 at General Motors Place in Vancouver, Canada. The Flames defeated the Canucks 3-2.  (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/Getty Images)

The battle for the Northwest division crown is coming down to the final weeks.  Both, the road weary Vancouver Canucks and the sputtering Calgary Flames are racing for the finish line with only a few games remaining in the regular season. 

As the season comes to a close, it's beginning to look more and more like the number three through six spots are going to be filled by the Canucks, Flames, Blackhawks, and Blue Jackets.  The big question is, is there really a reward for winning the NW division crown?  Yes. Three words, home ice advantage.

If the Canucks win the Northwest division, they will pumped full of energy and confidence, and will have that home ice in the all important game seven, should it come down to that.

Regardless of whom Vancouver plays in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, you can be sure that the series will go the distance.

All this talk about not wanting to match up against the Columbus Blue Jackets is non-sense.  The Canucks should be playing for the best seed possible, and hope that they are clicking come Game One, Round One.

Don't fear the opposition, make them fear you.