Idle Bruins clinch a spot in 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs


Boston needed only a Red Wings loss or a Flyers loss in regulation to secure a playoff berth on Thursday.

SUNRISE, FLORIDA - MARCH 26: The Boston Bruins celebrate the game-winning goal by Pavel Zacha #18 against the Florida Panthers at Amerant Bank Arena on March 26, 2024 in Sunrise, Florida.
The Boston Bruins are back in the playoffs. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

For the eighth straight season, playoff hockey will be back at TD Garden.

The Bruins did not take to the ice on Thursday, but Boston clinched a spot in the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs thanks to some help from the rest of the NHL.

Boston needed only a Red Wings loss or a Flyers loss in regulation to punch its ticket to the postseason on Thursday.

Jim Montgomery’s team ultimately received both results following Thursday’s slate of games, with the Bruins locked into a playoff spot with eight games left on their regular-season docket.

The Bruins did have a chance to clinch a playoff berth outright on Wednesday by earning a point against the Lightning, but were dealt a 3-1 loss in regulation by Tampa.

Even with that defeat against the Bolts, the 42-17-15 Bruins still sit atop the Atlantic Divison with 99 points — two ahead of the Florida Panthers. Boston is currently tied with the Carolina Hurricanes for second place in the Eastern Conference, with the New York Rangers leading the pack with 100 points.

The Bruins are looking for a better result this spring when compared to last season’s conclusion. Despite rewriting the record books with the most wins (65) and points (135) in a single season, Boston was eliminated in the first round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs by the Florida Panthers.

But the Bruins do have some good fortune on their side this postseason. Boston can become the fifth team in the last six seasons to make it to the Stanley Cup Final after winning the Presidents’ Trophy in the previous campaign.

They would join an impressive string of Cup contenders that includes Washington (2018 SC Winner), Tampa Bay (2020 SC Winner), Colorado (2022 SC Winner) and Florida (2023 SC Finalist).

Even though Boston secured a playoff berth Thursday, plenty can change between now and the end of the regular season when it comes to the Bruins’ potential first-round matchup.

Six of Boston’s final eight games this season are against teams currently in the playoff picture — starting with a road matchup against the Washington Capitals on Saturday night.

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