By Peter McClellan and Alex Oberti – The NHL is back, and the best players to keep an eye on for Sunday’s blockbuster matchup are in sight.
With a win for the Capitals, the Lightning have now won three of their past four games.
The Stars and Canadiens are tied for second with two wins apiece, while the Ducks and Sabres are tied with one each.
The Stars are on a four-game win streak, but they have yet to win three straight.
The Canadiens have gone 6-0-0 on the road, but have lost four straight.
The Avalanche are 1-2-0 at home, but are winning four of their last five.
The Capitals are coming off a 2-1 win over the Bruins, but now have a two-game winning streak to go along with a pair of road wins.
The Wild are 0-4-1 on the season, but can sweep the Kings and Blackhawks on the final day of the regular season.
The Islanders have won four of five, including a 3-2 win over a Dallas team that has scored more goals this season (16) than they did in their previous 12 contests (13).
The Bruins are on the verge of their first win since a 4-1 victory over the Flyers, and have already swept the Blues, Capitals, Capitals and Lightning.
The Flyers are 3-0 since a 6-2 loss to the Islanders on Tuesday.
The Kings have gone 2-0 in their past three games.
The Predators are 3 1/2 games out of first place in the Pacific Division, and are 1.5 games ahead of the Canucks for the final wild card spot.
The Ducks are a game behind the Sharks for the first wild card, but 1.25 games out.
The Maple Leafs are in a tight race with the Canucks, Stars, Capitals as well as the Kings for the third wild card.
The Kings have been on a five-game losing streak, including four straight in which they lost their past six.
The Rangers are 0.5 points behind the Islanders for the second wild card slot.
The Lightning are 1/3 ahead of Winnipeg for the fourth wild card and 2/1 ahead of Tampa Bay for the fifth wild card (they are currently tied with Minnesota).
The Kings are 4 1/4 ahead of Pittsburgh for the eighth wild card with a game in hand.
The Sabres are in sixth place, and they have a one-game lead on the Sabres for first place.
The Flames are in ninth place and they’re two games out at the top of the Pacific division.
The Oilers are in 10th place, while Arizona sits at 10th with two games in hand over Calgary.
The Blackhawks are on their way to their first Stanley Cup Playoff appearance since the 2003-04 season.
They’re currently 11-2, but would like to tie the Senators for the best record in the league.
The Panthers are in 12th place and would like a one win improvement over the Kings, who they beat 3-1 in Game 7.
The Canucks are currently 9-2 on the year, but could be in for a long night if they lose two of their next three games on the way to the final playoff spot.