So Everett’s 4-1 loss at Tri-City, coupled with Seattle 4-3 victory at Spokane, sets the stage for today’s do-or-die game between the Tips and T-birds in Kent. The teams are currently tied for the eighth and final playoff position in the Western Conference with 52 points. Victoria, which finished with 55 points, is safely in the playoffs, but can still be caught by Seattle for seventh, as the T-birds have two games remaining. Prince George, after losing 10-4 to Kamloops, is now out of contention. Seattle still has Sunday’s game at Portland, meaning today’s game may not determine everything. So what are Everett’s possible fates?
1) Everett beats Seattle in regulation.
If this happens, the Tips don’t clinch a playoff spot, but do clinch at least a one-game playoff to determine the conference’s final postseason berth. Everett would have a two-point edge on Seattle, meaning the T-birds would have to beat Portland on Sunday to force that one-game playoff.
2) Everett beats Seattle in overtime or a shootout.
In this scenario, Everett would take over eighth place, but would clinch nothing. Seattle could still take eighth by beating Portland on Sunday, or force a one-game playoff by losing in OT or a shootout. A Seattle regulation loss to Portland would mean the Tips are in.
3) Everett loses to Seattle in any way.
Any loss and Everett’s season is over.
It doesn’t get any more intense than this. The Tips have lost three straight and also their last three games in Kent, and the T-birds have won three straight that were essentially must-win. So Everett will have to find something that’s been missing recently to keep its season alive.