NHL Standings 2012: Bruins Primed For First Round Matchup With Ottawa

It's not as if they aren't familiar with the Senators as it is - they are, after all, the Bruins fiercest division rival these days - but the defending champs ought to take notes on tonight's game against Ottawa, as the two are on a collision course to meet in the first round of the NHL playoffs.

Boston, with 97 points and the Northeast Division wrapped up, is locked into the second seed in the Eastern Conference. That prompted head coach Claude Julien to leave team captain Zdeno Chara, center Patrice Bergeron, and goalie Tim Thomas behind on the team's final road trip.

The Senators, with 92 points, are close to securing the seventh seed in the conference, needing just a point in either of their final two games to do so.

Here's a look at the playoff picture in the Eastern Conference, where two spots remain up for grabs:

1. New York Rangers (109 points)

2. Boston Bruins (97 points)

3. Florida Rangers (92 points)*

4. Pittsburgh Penguins (104 points)

5. Philadelphia Flyers (101 points)

6. New Jersey Devils (98 points)

7. Ottawa Senators (92 points)

8. Washington Capitals (88 points)*

9. Buffalo Capitals (88 points)*

*Denotes teams who have not yet clinched a playoff berth.

For more Boston Bruins coverage, visit our team page and blog, Stanley Cup Of Chowder.

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