The Blackhawks had to win this afternoon’s game against the Red Wings at the United Center to assure themselves of a playoff spot.
They failed, but they’re in anyway, thanks to one of the only scenarios that could have gotten them back to the postseason — a Minnesota Wild win over the Dallas Stars in Minnesota this evening.
And so, with 97 points, the Blackhawks are the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference playoffs and will face the Vancouver Canucks in a series that will begin later this week. It’s the first time in 14 years that the Blackhawks have made three consecutive playoff appearances and it will be the second straight year they’ll have faced the Canucks in the postseason.
Vancouver should be out for revenge after the Hawks beat them four games to two in the Western Conference semifinals last spring. The Blackhawks were 2-2 against the Canucks during the regular season, and as the No. 8 seed will not have home ice advantage in any of their playoff series against Western teams.
We’ll update this StoryStream when the playoff dates and times are announced later this evening.