The Atlantic Division crown, and perhaps the Eastern Conference title, could very well be determined tonight at Consol. Suddenly struggling Philadelphia comes to town with a slim 2-point lead over the Penguins. The Flyers are a very pedestrian 5-4-4 in March, while the Pens have been on an 8-2 tear. (Disclaimer: Philly has a game in hand.)
It’s not like a typical Pens-Flyers game isn’t enough to get you amped up. Throw in the playoff implications at stake, and this is arguably the biggest game in the Burgh so far this season. Not only do the Pens have a chance to tie Philly at the top of the standings (division and conference), they have an opportunity to run their win streak to 5 games and even the season series with the Flyers in the process.
I’m not one to put too much emphasis on a regular-season game in March, but this one is deserving of the hype. The Pens have been gaining on the Flyers when everyone thought the opposite would happen. To overtake their cross-state rival this late in the season, especially considering the injuries to Crosby/Malkin, would be a huge psychological boost for Pittsburgh heading into the playoffs. But the Pens must win tonight (preferably in regulation) if they want that division title. Too many points to overcome in too few games if they don’t.