As the final week approaches, it seems as though each division has an enticing battle that will be settled in the coming days. Whether it be the ultra-competitive Central division, in which the top three teams sit within three points of each other, or the Pacific Division, where the Ducks cruised to the title but the Flames and Kings are neck-and-neck for the third seed and a trip to the playoffs.

The dilemma this creates for an avid NHL fan is simple: which games to watch? Luckily, this is the best problem in any sport and this next week will undoubtedly have some teams popping champagne and other teams exchanging their hockey sticks for golf clubs.

Even the Coyotes and Sabres find themselves in a battle for the WORST record in the league as the top pick in the NHL entry draft looms. Regardless of how the next week plays out, one thing is certain: hockey fans are in for a real treat. 

1. New York Rangers (50-21-7)– The Rangers have Henrik Lundqvist back and healthy, have won three games in a row, and are tied with the Ducks with 107 points with two games in hand. New York seems to be on a direct collision course with the Presidents Trophy. (0)
2. Anaheim Ducks (50-23-7) Anaheim continues to struggle to find a number one goaltender; however, it will not matter much if they continue to win at the rate that they are. The Ducks remain in a tight race for the Presidents Trophy and have already clinched the Pacific Division title by a wide margin.   (0)
3. St. Louis Blues (48-23-7)– Ken Hitchcock’s squad has fought hard all season in a talented Central Division and currently leads the division with three games to go. A 2-1 win over division rival Chicago on Sunday is their most impressive win of their season so far. (+3)
4. Tampa Bay Lightning (48-24-8)Steven Stamkos and the Lightning offense continue to carry this team; however, Ben Bishop has to be better for this team to make it out of the East. Tampa Bay is allowing 3.5 goals per game over their last seven games, which will make a seven game series very tough if that trend continues. (-1)
5. Montreal Canadiens (48-22-10) Carey Price. Carey Price. Carey Price. The Habs goaltender, likely MVP and Vezina Trophy winner has had a historic season and has kept his team atop the Atlantic Division all season. The only question will be if Max Pacioretty and the Montreal offense can help him out in the postseason? (-1)
6. Chicago Blackhawks (48-24-6) No Patrick Kane? No problem. Chicago has relied on impressive depth and puck possession to not only stay afloat, but compete for the Central division crown. With three games to play, the Blackhawks are only two points behind the Predators and three points behind St. Louis. (+1)
7. Nashville Predators (47-22-10) Nashville continues to fall in the rankings and their play has warranted that with three straight losses and their relinquishing of the Central Division lead. They have given up 14 goals in their last three games and Pekka Rinne has to figure it out soon or they could be in for a quick exit from the postseason.(-2)
8. Washington Capitals (44-25-11)– Washington has muscled their way to second place in the Metropolitan Division behind the absurd goal scoring of their leader Alexander OvechkinOvechkin’s 52 goals give him a 10 goal cushion over the next closest goal scorer and he will be red-hot entering the postseason. (+3)

9. New York Islanders (46-27-6) The sizzle and flare that surrounded New York all season has died out and they now find themselves in third place in the competitive Metropolitan Division. John Taveras has willed this team to where they are as his 80 points are good for second in the NHL. (-1)
10. Minnesota Wild (44-26-8) Barring a huge collapse, Minnesota has just about wrapped up the first wild card spot in the West to cap off arguably the best regular season story. DevanDubnyk will be receiving MVP votes and it is hard not to wonder what kind of season he could have had if he spent it all with the Wild. (-1)
11. Detroit Red Wings (41-25-13) Detroit has allowed poor goaltending to cost them games down the stretch and they now find themselvesonly two points ahead of Ottawa and clinging onto the final wild card spot. Mike Babcock has to find a way to right the ship. Fast. (-1)
12. Winnipeg Jets (40-26-12) A huge 2-0 win over Minnesota on Monday catapulted Winnipeg one point ahead of the Kings for the final wild card spot in the West. The Jets lost star defenseman Dustin Byfuglien for four games because of a vicious cross-check which could be a fatal blow to this team as they battle for a playoff berth. (+1)
13. Boston Bruins (41-25-3) Kudos to Boston for the way that they have played since they fell behind the Senators in the Eastern Conference playoff race last month. The Bruins have won 5 games in a row and have jumped Detroit for third place in the Atlantic Division. (+3)
14. Ottawa Senators (40-26-12) Ottawa will be the most intriguing story to monitor over the next week as they remain hot on the trail of Pittsburg, Boston, and Detroit. Tuesdays game against Pittsburg may decide whether or not the Senators will be watching or competing in the postseason. (0)
15. Pittsburg Penguins (42-26-11) What is going wrong in Pittsburg? They acquired key assets at the deadline, Sidney Crosby is leading the league in points and this team still cannot find a way to win games. They currently sit just two points ahead of Ottawa and if they lose on Tuesday then things will get even more urgent then they are now for the Penguins. (-3)
16. Vancouver Canucks (45-29-5) Vancouver has been in a funny position all year where they could never catch up to the Ducks; however, they always seemed to have a firm hold on second place in the Pacific. If they play their cards right down the stretch, they will be a tough out for whoever they draw in the postseason. (-1)
17. Los Angeles Kings (39-25-14)– Los Angeles continues to do what they do best, which is win games when it matter most. They currently sit 1 point behind Winnipeg and are tied with Calgary. Thursday’s game against the Flames will likely decide which of the two teams earns third in the Pacific. (+1)
18. Calgary Flames (43-29-7) Calgary wants to win now; however, their season will be a major success regardless of how the next week plays out. The inspired play of Sean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau, and Jiri Hudler provide a sneak preview of a potentially awesome future for Calgary hockey. (-1)
19. Dallas Stars (38-31-10) Dallas has spent most of their season as the Western Conference version of the Lightning, just with horrific goaltending. Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin are both in the top 6 in the league in points and should be a formidable duo for years to come. (+2)
20. Columbus Blue Jackets (39-35-4)Columbus decided to join the list of bottom-dwelling teams to catch fire throughout the season; however, it is too little too late for a Blue Jackets team that has won 12 of their last 14 and had won 9 in a row before losing 4-3 to the Rangers in overtime on Monday. (+4)
21. Colorado Avalanche (36-31-12) Colorado will not consider their season a success, yet the play of young guns Matt Duchene, Gabriel Landeskogand Ryan O’Reilly will undoubtedly provide hope for years to come in Colorado. The trio has each recorded 20+ goals and 50+ points on the season. (-1)
22. Florida Panthers (36-29-15) A 3-2 come-from-behind defeat to the Boston Bruins on Tuesday ended their playoff hopes and their current two game losing streak shows that they may have given it all that they had already. Regardless, Florida is another team with a bright future and they will undoubtedly be a mainstay in the playoffs in the near future. (-3)
23. San Jose Sharks (39-31-9) San Jose epitomized their season with an abysmal 5-3 loss to Arizona on Saturday. The electric offense and stellar goaltending have been able to hide a subpar defense for years; however, this formula seems to have finally caught up with the aging Sharks. (0)
24. Philadelphia Flyers (32-29-18) The Flyers have been able to put together some impressive wins recently over Pittsburg and Chicago and provide hope for the future. Philadelphia’s 18 overtime losses lead the league and must make fans cringe thinking about what their season could have been with a few more of those losses being victories. (+2)
25. Carolina Hurricanes (29-38-11) Carolina continues to battle every night for two points, although they have lost four of five and seem to be more and more ready for the offseason. Only two members of the Hurricanes have a positive +/- rating which is a testament to just how many goals this team is conceding on a nightly basis. (0)
26. New Jersey Devils (32-34-13) New Jersey has lost 7 of their last 8 games with games against the Rangers and Lightning remaining before the season ends. An impressive 3-2 victory on Friday over Montreal should give fans something to smile about though. (-4)
27. Toronto Maple Leafs (29-43-7) Toronto took a hard fought loss to the Bruins and a head scratching 4-3 loss to Buffalo in the past week; however, their two wins over Ottawa and a win over Tampa Bay show just how good this team could have been in the cards fell in their favor. (0)
28. Edmonton Oilers (23-43-13) Edmonton’s hot streak came to an abrupt end this week as they lost all three games they played by a combined score of 17-3. At least it can’t get any worse right? (0)
29. Arizona Coyotes (24-47-8) Arizona had a quiet week and split their two games with San Jose over the weekend. Hats off to Oliver Ekman-Larsson on a stellar 23 goal season for a team with little to smile about all year. He will undoubtedly be this teams centerpiece during their rebuilding efforts. (0)
30. Buffalo Sabres (22-49-8) Buffalo was able to pick up two wins this week, yet their biggest win of the week was arguably the Coyotes win over the Sharks as it kept them in place for the first overall pick in the NHL draft. The only question that remains: Eichel or McDavid? (0)