NHL games getting postponed is nothing new to any hockey fan at this point in the season. Most recently, the Tampa Bay Lightning at New Jersey Devils game and the Ottawa Senators at Edmonton Oilers game have been postponed. The Senators-Oilers game is rescheduled for January 15th at 10 pm eastern time. The new date Lightning-Devils game has not been announced.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) January 9, 2022
More NHL Games Postponed
While it seems there is a never-ending news cycle of postponed matchups, there is light at the end of the tunnel. The break originally scheduled for the Olympics is approaching fast. During that time, most, if not all, of these postponed games will take place, and the league should be all caught up. The difficulty now is keeping players and teams healthy enough to play as many games as possible. After the “Olympic” break, there will be very few opportunities to make up postponed games.
How This Affects Each Team
The Oilers have been playing some of their worst hockey this season in the last 10 or so games. They are 2-6-2 in their last 10 and have dropped all the way down to sixth in the Pacific division. Many fans are calling for head coach Dave Tippett to be removed from his position. While the COVID issues are within the Oilers organization, this little break could be exactly what the team needs. Some time to regroup, refocus, and recharge could end up leading to wins in future games.
In contrast to the Oilers, Tampa Bay has been rolling recently. With star player Nikita Kucherov back in the lineup, their offence just got scarier. Tied with the Florida Panthers for first in the Atlantic division, the Lightning are 6-3-1 in their last 10. This tiny gap in their season theoretically could kill some of their momentum. But, then again, it likely won’t, and the Bolts will keep on winning.
The Senators have been having a rough season so far. Sitting at well under .500, they are not done rebuilding, as Pierre Dorion suggested. Luckily for them, the COVID issues are not within their camp, so they can focus on their next game against the Calgary Flames.
The Devils sit close to the basement of their division, but they are in a better spot than the Senators. Unfortunately for them, it does not look likely they will be making the playoffs. They will likely use this time to get healthy and focus on winning their next game.