We’re down to 16.
In the East it was pretty clear-cut: Unless Winnipeg really turned on the Jets (See what I did there, eh?), we knew who was in and who was out. It was just a matter of seeding.
Out in the Wild, Wild West, we weren’t sure if Minnesota’s team (what are they called again?) was going to drop out after making it rain in the offseason and contending for the Northwest Division early in the year.
That’s not all of it, either. In fact, things could have really gotten strange: The Detroit Red Wings almost missed the playoffs and the Columbus Blue Jackets almost made them. The bankrupt Phoenix Coyotes and Dallas Stars were in it to the end. And of all the California teams, it is the Anaheim Ducks, not the San Jose Sharks or Los Angeles Kings, that get the highest seed.
Oh well, the dust has settled and now we know who’s in and who’s out. So let's take a look at which teams are going into the playoffs with a head of steam and which ones backed into hockey’s postseason tournament.