There’s just one week left on the NHL schedule and those teams on the outside looking in on the postseason picture have little to play for.
However, some teams relish the opportunity to spread their misery around the league and drag opposing teams down with them.
Here are three NHL teams that could play spoiler down the stretch:
Philadelphia Flyers (20-22-3 SU, 17-28 ATS)
It’s been a disappointing season for the Flyers, but no team has more potential to play spoiler down the stretch than Philly. The Flyers are building momentum with three wins in their last four contests, and have three games remaining against squads that will be desperate for wins down the stretch – Boston, New York (Islanders), and Ottawa.
Phoenix Coyotes (19-17-8 SU, 22-22 ATS)
The Coyotes aren’t technically out of playoff contention yet, but they’re certainly on life support as they trail the eighth-place Columbus Blue Jackets by five points in the West with four games to play heading into action Monday. The Desert Dogs are coming off a huge 3-2 win over Chicago and have earned points in three of their last four contests. Phoenix will have the chance to put a serious dent in Detroit’s playoff plans Monday night and squash San Jose’s chances of earning home advantage in the first round of the postseason on Wednesday.
Calgary Flames (19-22-4 SU, 22-23 ATS)
The Flames parted ways with long-time captain Jarome Iginla at the trade deadline, waving the white flag on their failed campaign. Calgary also did its best to ship goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff to Toronto, but he boldly refused to report to a new team if traded. The veteran netminder has since announced his retirement at season’s end and the Flames have been playing spirited hockey ever since. In fact, Calgary has already been playing spoiler over its last three games knocking off Minnesota, Anaheim and Detroit. The Flames will now try to throw a wrench in the Blues’ chances of earning home advantage in the first round of the playoffs on Thursday.
All stats prior to action Monday.