The NHL playoffs are just around the corner, but just how teams stack up, or even get in, comes down to the final weekend of the season.

While we know who will make up the playoff bracket in the East, the exact order of the seeding is still murky.

The Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals have locked up their divisions, and the first and third seeds, respectively, but every other spot in the East has yet to be decided.

Much of that centres around the quest for the Northeast Division title, and the second seed in the conference, by the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens.

The rivals are tied with 61 points, however, the Bruins play Washington on Saturday and Ottawa on Sunday, and therefore have a game in hand as the Canadiens finish their season in Toronto on Hockey Night In Canada.

How Boston can clinch the Northeast

  • Any type of win vs. both Washington + Ottawa
  • Gain two points in their remaining games, combined with any type of Montreal loss
  • Gain a least one point in their remaining games, combined with a Montreal loss in regulation vs. Toronto

How Montreal can clinch the Northeast

  • Any type of win vs. Toronto, combined with any type of Boston losses vs. Washington + Ottawa
  • Gain at least a point against Toronto, combined with two Bruins regulation losses, or held to a single point
  • A regulation loss vs. Toronto, combined with Boston regulation losses  vs. Washington + Ottawa

Western Conference

The seventh and eighth seeds in the West will be clinched on Saturday night. The Detroit Red Wings look to continue their two-decade playoff appearance streak while the Minnesota Wild and Columbus Blue Jackets try to end their respective playoff droughts.

With all three of those teams down their final regular season game of the season, Detroit and Minnesota control their own destiny. If both of those teams score any type of win, they are in the playoffs.

The Red Wings have 54 points, one more than their playoff-hopeful counterparts in Minnesota and Columbus, and only need a solitary point against Dallas on Saturday to lock up a spot.

Detroit also clinches a playoff berth if both the Wild and Blue Jackets lose in regulation.

The Wild play on the road in Colorado on Saturday and are tied with ninth-place Columbus at 53 points apiece, but Minnesota has three more non-shootout wins than Columbus, who play the Nashville Predators on Saturday.

How Detroit can clinch a spot

  • Any type of win or non-regulation loss vs. Dallas
  • A regulation loss vs. Dallas, combined with a regulation loss by either Columbus or Minnesota

How Minnesota can clinch a spot

  • Any type of win over Colorado
  • At least a point vs. Colorado, combined with any type of loss by Columbus
  • A regulation loss vs. Colorado, combined with a regulation loss by Columbus

How Columbus can clinch a spot

  • Any type of win vs. Nashville, combined with any type of loss by Minnesota
  • Any type of win vs. Nashville, combined with a regulation loss by Detroit
  • Gain a point vs. Nashville, combined with a regulation loss by Minnesota