That was a horrible loss.
The St. Louis Blues were in need of a victory over lowly Chicago to overtake the Colorado Avalanche for the second and final wild card in the West.
The Blues could have even used an extra time loss, be it in overtime or the shootout, to at least tie the Avs for the final spot with each team having two games left.
But that did not happen as Duncan Keith scored only his second goal of the season with a half a second less than nine seconds remaining in the third to give Chicago a 4-3 win over the Blues. The loss keeps St. Louis in ninth place with only two games to go for both teams.
The Blues play another game with Chicago Friday, with this one in the Windy City, while Colorado is in San Jose to take on the Sharks on Thursday.
And that sets up Saturday’s contest in Denver where the Blues take on the Avalanche.
Good work by the schedule maker as any outcome other than a Colorado win over San Jose and a regulation loss by the Blues on Friday, will make the game a winner take all, at least in regulation time.
The loss allowed the Los Angeles Kings to clinch a playoff berth.
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OTTAWA 4 BUFFALO 2
In a game between two of the bottom-dwellers in the Eastern Conference as well as the entire NHL, the Ottawa Senators prevailed in a 4-2 win over Buffalo. The loss guaranteed the Sabres would have the worst record in the NHL for the third time in the last five years.
The odds of the Sabres picking first overall is only 18.5 percent and the Sabres could pick as low as fourth overall if they lose in the lottery.
Ryan O'Reilly gave the Sabres the early lead as he scored only 30 seconds into the contest, but the Senators got goals from Max McCormick and Matt Duchene in the first period and Ryan Dzingel in the second to take a 3-1 lead. Kyle Okposo cut the lead to one in the second but Alex Burrows scored into the empty net to seal the win for Ottawa.
Casey Mittelstadt, the Sabres first round pick this past season, picked up his third assist in four games as he recently inked a deal with Buffalo after completing his freshman season at the University of Minnesota. He looks like a keeper for next season.
Craig Anderson picked up his 23rd win of the season as he stopped 32-of-34 shots. It has not been a good season for Anderson who had a 2.28 GAA last season. This year it is 1.03 more as it currently is at 3.31. The Senators need a lot better next season if they hope to contend for the playoffs.
Chad Johnson made 28 saves for the Sabres.
Bobby Ryan suffered a lower body injury in the first period and did not return.
CHICAGO 4 ST. LOUIS 3
As mentioned earlier, it was not a good ending for St. Louis as they blew a 3-1 lead and dropped an important game to Chicago 4-3.
Congratulations go out to Blake Hillman who in only his second career NHL game potted his first goal. It was a shorthanded effort for the sixth round pick in the 2016 Draft.
Alex DeBrincat was the offensive star for Chicago as he scored the tying goal and set up the winner by Duncan Keith to give him 28 goals and 52 points. Not a bad rookie season for the diminutive winger.
Andreas Martinsen scored his first of the season as he got the Blackhawks on the board.
Robert Bortuzzo opened the scoring with his fourth of the season for the Blues.
Jean-Francois Berube turned aside 31shots for his third win of the season while Jake Allen took the loss as he was unable to stop four goals on only 26 shots. It was his fourth straight loss in the Blues cage.
ANAHEIM 3 MINNESOTA 1
Ondrej Kase knocked in a rebound off a Josh Manson shot for his 20th goal of the season to give the Anaheim Ducks a 3-1 win over the Minnesota Wild and clinch a berth in the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Ducks jumped into third place in the Pacific Division, one point ahead of their cross-town rival Los Angeles Kings.
After a scoreless first period, Matt Dumba scored on the power play to give the Wild the 1-0 lead. It has been a great season for the defenseman whose name was bounced around before the expansion draft as a possible pick for the Golden Knights.
Nick Ritchie tied the game up at the 12:55 mark of the second and the score remained tied at 1 until Kase’s game winner.
Andrew Cogliano scored into the empty net to clinch the win.
Ryan Miller was terrific in the Anaheim net as he stopped 26-of-27 shots for his 10th win of the season.
Devan Dubnyk took the loss despite giving up only two goals on 30 shots.
Zach Parise saw his seven game points streak come to an end.
Josh Manson had two assists for the Ducks.