March 31, 2012; Glendale, AZ, USA; Phoenix Coyotes center Martin Hanzal (11) celebrates after his team takes a 4-0 lead in the third period against the Anaheim Ducks at Jobing.com. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-US PRESSWIRE
The Phoenix Coyotes may not have been in action Thursday night, but as a result of the Dallas Stars losing to the Nashville Predators 2-0, the Coyotes secured a spot to the 2011-2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
It is the first time the Coyotes have clinched a playoff spot in three consecutive years since their first years in the Valley (1996-97 to 1999-2000) and marks the first time the franchise has won 40 plus games in three consecutive seasons.
While the Coyotes have locked up a spot in the postseason, the remaining games do matter. The 'Yotes are tied with the Los Angeles Kings for the Pacific Division with 93 points, and will try to hold off the San Jose Sharks who have 92 points.
The Coyotes could finish as high as the third seed, or as low as the seventh or eight seed.
The 16 teams who will take part in the Stanley Cup Playoffs playoffs have been decided, and now it is only a matter of how they will be seeded. The complete Stanley Cup Playoff schedule will be released Sunday at 10 a.m. Arizona time.