NHL Playoff Races: Eastern Conference Race Heads Down To the Wire

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NHL Playoff Races: Eastern Conference Race Heads Down To the Wire
Rick Stewart/Getty Images

As of March 31, it's not April yet.

But it almost is, and the Eastern Conference playoff race is showing that.

As the five bubble teams along the cut line battle down to the last second, the Canadiens (89 pts), Sabres (87 pts) and Rangers (87 pts) fight to keep their spot in the top eight while the Hurricanes (84 pts) and Maple Leafs (80 pts) look to find a way to sneak their way in.

However, with less than two weeks remaining in the 2010-2011 NHL regular season, the time has come for each to make their move—if they haven't already done so. With the exception of Montreal, which has only recently dropped onto the top of the bubble, all four other teams have already turned on the jets as they look to bring postseason hockey to their arena.

How does each team match up to the others in terms of streak, remaining schedule, tiebreaker advantages, and plain ol' luck? We analyze how this final frenzy to the make the playoffs will pan out.

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