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Updated after March 17 games

Well, we're down to the nitty gritty in the NHL's playoff race, which means it's time to take a closer look at the teams involved.

Given how things currently sit, I project that the postseason cutoff in the Eastern Conference will be 89 or 90 points, while in the Western Conference it'll be closer to 95 or 96 points. That can shift slightly over the final 15 or so games, but it won't move more than a point or two.

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Given those projected marks, here is the record all 30 teams will need in their remaining games to get there:

Eastern Conference (89 points)

  1. Philadelphia - qualified (110 point pace)
  2. Washington - qualified (105 point pace)
  3. Pittsburgh - qualified (104 point pace)
  4. Boston - 0-11-1
  5. Tampa Bay - 0-10-1
  6. Montreal - 2-9-0
  7. NY Rangers - 5-5-1
  8. Buffalo - 6-5-1
  9. Carolina - 7-3-1
  10. Atlanta - 8-2-1
  11. New Jersey - 9-2-1
  12. Toronto - 8-1-1
  13. Florida - 11-0-0
  14. NY Islanders - eliminated (max 87 points)
  15. Ottawa - eliminated (max 83 points)

Western Conference (96 points)

  1. Vancouver - qualified (117 point pace)
  2. Detroit - 1-10-0
  3. San Jose - 3-7-0
  4. Phoenix - 4-5-1
  5. Los Angeles - 5-5-1
  6. Dallas - 6-5-0
  7. Chicago - 6-5-0
  8. Anaheim - 7-4-1
  9. Nashville - 7-4-0
  10. Calgary - 6-2-1
  11. Minnesota - 9-1-1
  12. Columbus - 11-1-0
  13. St. Louis - eliminated (max 95 points)
  14. Colorado - eliminated (max 84 points)
  15. Edmonton - eliminated (max 77 points)

So only five teams can't hit these projections at all. And several are on their way to joining them.

I will generally keep this list updated roughly once a week, as more and more teams fall out of contention, so check back.

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About the Author
Hockey Reporter

James joined The Globe as an editor and reporter in the sports department in 2005 and now covers the NHL and the Toronto Maple Leafs. More

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