There are still a few games to be played before the 2012-13 regular season ends, but the playoff picture is beginning to look more and more clear.
The Los Angeles Kings have been sitting pretty in 5th place in the Western Conference for some time now, but they could find themselves leapfrogging the San Jose Sharks with a win against the Edmonton Oilers tonight.
While a high playoff seed is nice, it won’t really make much of a difference for the Kings, who will likely have a battle in the first round no matter where they finish in the standings. If the playoffs started today, the Kings would find themselves up against San Jose in the first round. The Sharks are riding a seven-game winning streak, and are getting hot at just the right time. There is nothing more dangerous than a team that gets hot going into the playoffs.
Los Angeles could also easily find themselves at an even lower seed going into the playoffs, should they slip up and lose a few games. Teams like the Minnesota Wild and the Detroit Red Wings are banking on it, as a matter of fact. One or two consecutive losses for the Kings could mean a seventh or even eighth seed, not that it makes much of a difference.
After today’s game against Edmonton, the Kings will look to stifle the Anaheim Ducks Sunday evening, who currently sit second only to the seemingly-unbeatable Chicago Blackhawks, and grab another much-needed two points.
Mike Pantaleone is a Los Angeles Kings writer for RantSports.com.
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