On Friday morning, Lindy Ruff shared the news with his team. If it won out, it was in the playoffs. It didn't matter what Washington, Ottawa or Winnipeg did. A long shot? Absolutely. But still a remarkable comeback for a team we all buried in January.
"That's a good feeling when you can control your own destiny," Ruff said.
It's even better when you actually do it. The Sabres are coming off a weekend sweep of the Rangers (Friday) and Wild (Saturday) that pushed them briefly into the No. 8 spot.
That sets up Tuesday's showdown with the Washington Capitals, with the winner of that game seizing momentary control of the final playoff spot. If it's anything like Saturday's intense battle between Phoenix and San Jose, it'll have all the makings of a playoff game. Except the ending. A shootout -- like we saw between the Coyotes and Sharks -- would be the worst possible scenario for Ottawa, a team that doesn't want to get dragged into a three-team fight for the final two spots. At this point, with the way the Capitals and Sabres are playing, it looks inevitable.
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