By Allan Muir
An annotated guide to this morning’s must-read hockey stories:
• Congrats to the Capitals, who won a thriller over the Jets to clinch the Southeast title for the fifth time in six seasons.
• While the rest of the league was content to write Washington off early on, coach Adam Oates never stopped believing in the team. He still looks like a dark horse for the Adams, but he fully deserves to be in the mix.
• The Jets aren’t quite good enough yet, but the future looks bright in Winnipeg.
• So they backed in. Big deal. The Islanders are in the playoffs for the first time since 2007!
• Two players who shouldn’t expect a postseason call-up to Long Island: Rick DiPietro and Nino Niederreiter.
• This season hasn’t provided Buffalo with much to brag about, but at least the Sabres can say they snapped a pair of lengthy Penguins winning streaks in Pittsburgh.
• The Pens could have Paul Martin and James Neal back in the lineup before the regular season ends. But Sidney Crosby…?