Flyers in Buffalo With Two to Go, Playoff Seeding on the Line

Flyers in Buffalo With Two to Go, Playoff Seeding on the Line

We have two more regular season Flyers games in which to find either comfort or agony. That may sound a bit melodramatic, but that's how the games have felt for the better part of at least the past month, and with the postseason looming, I don't see us going monk on the outcomes of the final two. The Flyers have a possible playoff preview on their hands in tonight's visit to Buffalo, a game that also has heavy implications on the overall Eastern Conference playoff picture. 

The Flyers are still playing for seeding and for the pride of a first place finish, whether in the conference or the division. Things like the President's Trophy and first place finishes don't mean much in the shadow of the Stanley Cup, but it's still nice to be able to look back on history and count division titles (particularly if the team also wins the Cup). 

The Sabres have two games left and a one-point lead over the eighth-seeded Rangers, who have only one game remaining and could still be caught by Carolina. If the playoffs were to start today, the Flyers would be hosting Buffalo. However, the Penguins can knock the Flyers to fourth place if they win both of their remaining games and the Flyers lose one of their remaining two. Boston still has a shot at the second seed as well. 

Despite being without Ryan Miller in goal, Buffalo has won three of their last four games and earned points in each of them. Jhonas Enroth, tonight's likely starter for the Sabres, has turned some heads with wins over the Rangers, Hurricanes, and Lightning. He'll face Flyers playoff starter Sergei Bobrovsky before presumably returning to the backup role with Miller nearly ready to play.

So who will respond to whatever call Homer barked out during the closed door meeting? 

Best of NHL: Penguins beat Panthers in Sidney Crosby's debut

Best of NHL: Penguins beat Panthers in Sidney Crosby's debut

PITTSBURGH -- Sidney Crosby scored in his season debut as the Pittsburgh Penguins rallied to beat the Florida Panthers 3-2 on Tuesday night.

Crosby, who scored on a power play, missed the team's first six games with a concussion. Carl Hagelin and Eric Fehr also scored for the Penguins, who extended a seven-game unbeaten streak against the Panthers.

Marc-Andre Fleury, who has started the first seven games of the season for Pittsburgh, stopped 20 shots. Matt Murray, who backstopped the Penguins to a Stanley Cup in June, served as the backup to Fleury after missing the first six games with a broken hand.

Reilly Smith scored a power-play goal and Mark Pysyk also scored for the Panthers, who have lost 11 of 12 against the Penguins in Pittsburgh.

James Reimer made 19 saves in his second start of the season (see full recap).

Kings top Blue Jackets in overtime
LOS ANGELES -- Alec Martinez scored 1:14 into overtime, and the Los Angeles Kings rallied to beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 Tuesday night for their third straight victory.

Drew Doughty scored the tying goal with 5:57 left in regulation for the Kings, who won their third straight overtime game after an 0-3-0 start to the season. Captain Anze Kopitar also scored, and third-string goalie Peter Budaj stopped 19 shots in his third consecutive win.

Cam Atkinson scored a tiebreaking power-play goal late in the second period, and Sergei Bobrovsky made 27 saves for Columbus. Brandon Saad also scored for the Jackets, who had won two straight after an 0-2-0 start.

Martinez ended it by putting a rebound into an open net for the defenseman's second goal of the season (see full recap).

Lightning strike for seven goals in win
TORONTO -- Steven Stamkos matched a career-high with four points -- two goals and two assists -- and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 7-3 on Tuesday night.

Frederik Andersen gave up seven goals on only 24 shots, the third time in five starts he has allowed at least five goals and fourth time he's allowed four or more. The 27-year-old has an .851 save percentage so far this season.

Alex Killorn, Victor Hedman, Nikita Kucherov, Vladislav Namestnikov and Jonathan Drouin added goals for Tampa Bay, while Ben Bishop made 40 saves.

William Nylander, James van Riemsdyk and Auston Matthews scored for the Maple Leafs, who outshot the Lightning 43-24 (see full recap).

Report: Eagles make inquiry about Bears WR Alshon Jeffery

Report: Eagles make inquiry about Bears WR Alshon Jeffery

The Eagles could be looking for a bigger name outside.

In need of a deep threat — and reportedly in talks about a trade for 49ers wideout Torrey Smith — the Eagles are interested in Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery and attempting to make a move for the 2013 Pro Bowler, according to a report Tuesday night by Benjamin Allbright of Mile High Sports Radio.

We followed up with Allbright, who clarified the Eagles simply made an inquiry.

Jeffery, much more of a do-it-all, dynamic wide receiver than the one-dimensional Smith, is 26 years old and can become a free agent at season's end. He'll warrant good money, but would make the Eagles better in more ways than one compared to Smith.

The 6-foot-3, 218-pounder put up 89 catches for 1,421 yards and seven touchdowns in 2013, followed by 85 catches, 1,133 yards receiving and 10 scores in 2014.

This season, he has 520 yards receiving and has yet to find the end zone playing for the quarterback-challenged Bears, who are 1-6 and more than likely thinking about next season.