BOSTON -- The Bruins and Montreal Canadiens just can’t find any separation.
After dispatching the Tampa Bay Lightning by a 2-0 score on Thursday night at TD Garden, the Bruins watched as the Winnipeg Jets wilted in the third period against the Montreal Canadiens after learning they’d been eliminated from playoff contention following an Ottawa Senators overtime victory.
So both the Bruins and Habs sit tied at 61 points in the final weeks of the season with Boston still sitting in the No. 2 spot by virtue of their game in hand against the Senators on Sunday night. The Bruins are 4-5-1 in their last 10 games while Montreal is 4-6 in that same span, and it has seemed at times that both arch-rivals have had little interest in seizing the Northeast Division crown. It will come down to the final two games for the Black and Gold played this weekend against a pair of playoff teams in the Washington Capitals and Ottawa Senators. If they win out then they win the division, win home ice in at least the first couple rounds of the playoffs and finally put a positive spin at the end of a regular season that hasn’t felt like one of their best.
“We only have now, two games left and you want to go into the playoffs rolling and not telling yourself ‘okay now we’ve got to play the way we’re supposed to and hopefully win,” said Dennis Seidenberg. “So, for us, the next two games, we’ve really got to start playing to our potential and being ready mentally.”
The Habs have one final game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre on Saturday while still trying to fend off the Sens from overtaking them as the No. 4 seed, so both hockey clubs should be trying to win that game.
For the Bruins nabbing the No. 2 seed could mean the difference between hosting the inexperienced Toronto Maple Leafs and the underachieving, talented New York Rangers in the first round of the playoffs, and that’s a pretty significant deal for the Black and Gold.