NHL Death Watch: Red Wings’ 21-season playoff streak in trouble; East bubble madness (Puck Daddy)

Since we're down to the final moments of postseason life for teams in contention, Puck Daddy solemnly begins a daily countdown to annihilation. The Columbus Blue Jackets have scratched and clawed their way into the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference through some gutsy wins. But it’s the Detroit Red Wings that opened the door for them, thanks to losses like the 3-2 defeat against the Calgary Flames on Wednesday night. (Oh, and fare thee well, Calgary Flames, who were eliminated from playoff contention thanks to the Jackets’ win over the Ducks in OT.) The Wings’ 21-season playoff streak is now at risk with five games left on their schedule. They do have a game in-hand on Columbus, who plays at Los Angeles on Thursday night. From George Johnson of the Windsor Star: If this current fight to actually slide into the playoffs has done anything, it's reinforced how ridiculously well the Wings have been run for over two decades. Through changing times, financial landscapes, personnel turnovers and trends, they've been the constant. "Pressure?" said coach Mike Babcock on Wednesday. "When you get 125 points and you drop the puck in the first round, there's pressure. Pressure usually means you have a chance. Now, the pressure's on us is to maximize our potential and be as good as we're capable of being. "I think we're where we should be, to be honest with you. I think we're battling hard. I've heard all year we're not consistent. We are consistent. You go through each month we're one game or two games over (. 500) each month. This is what we are. We've got to find a way to crawl into the playoffs.” The other concern for Detroit: The Dallas Stars, who are two points behind them, have a game in-hand and play the Wings in the season finale. Coming up, the playoff pictures for the East and West, as we shift the focus to playoff seeding. The full NHL standings and schedules can be found on Y! Sports.

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