The Chicago Blackhawks were idle on Tuesday night, but they still saw their deficit in the NHL’s Central Division grow as the Nashville Predators picked up a home victory over the defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Blackhawks currently trail the Predators by four points in the standings with 13 games to go in the regular season. Three of those games are against Nashville, giving Chicago a chance to make up some ground in a hurry.
Here is the latest update on the Blackhawks’ playoff chances.
Where Things Stand:
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4 Nashville 49 points, 44 games played
5 Chicago 45 points, 43 games played
6 Dallas 42 points, 41 games played
7 Columbus 39 points, 44 games played
The Blackhawks were hoping that they could keep pace with the Predators on Tuesday night, but Nashville had other ideas, as they shellacked the Tampa Bay Lightning 7-2 at Bridgestone Arena.
Viktor Arvidsson scored a pair of goals and had an assist, and the Preds used three first period goals to take a lead that they would never relinquish in the game.
The Stars managed to earn a point against the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night thanks to a Joe Pavelski goal in the third period, but they couldn’t get the second point as Frank Vatrano scored his 14th goal of the season in overtime to give Florida the road victory.
The Blackhawks will enjoy another day off Wednesday before heading to Detroit for a Thursday matchup with the Red Wings at Little Caesar’s Arena.
The Stars will also be back in action on Thursday, taking on the Columbus Blue Jackets at home.
The Predators will head out on the road to take on the Carolina Hurricanes in Raleigh to complete a tripleheader of games with playoff implications for the Blackhawks.