Pens earn home ice on last day
UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Most of the late-season NHL drama was gone before the curtain closed Sunday on the regular season.
That didn’t make it any less special for the 16 teams that still have a whole lot more left on the line once the postseason kicks off Wednesday night.
All the playoff matchups in the Eastern Conference were locked into place after a busy Saturday. The only mystery that remained there Sunday — with four games on the league schedule — was which club would own home-ice advantage in the Battle of Pennsylvania between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers.
The Penguins, the defending East champions, could only watch as the Flyers wrapped up the season at home. But Pittsburgh got some good news when the New York Rangers rallied in the third period for a 4-3 win. So, the Penguins earned the No. 4 seed and will start the series against the Flyers at home.
Tim Thomas and his Bruins backup Manny Fernandez earned the William Jennings Trophy as the goalies for the club finishing the season having surrendered the fewest goals (196).