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There's usually no reason to focus too heavily on games not involving the Islanders, but tonight's NHL lineup provides a notable exception.

The ninth place Winnipeg Jets head to Buffalo to play the Sabres tonight, a game that could allow the Islanders to clinch on Tuesday night in Carolina.

The Islanders' magic number is three, meaning any combination of three points that they earn or that Winnipeg doesn't earn will secure them a playoff berth.

With a Jets loss of any kind tonight in Buffalo, a Isles win tomorrow would secure the Isles a playoff spot for the first time in five years. That's now the longest active drought in the NHL as the Leafs clinched over the weekend. If the Jets lose in regulation, the Islanders would only need a point to clinch.

Happy scoreboard watching.

Tags: Islanders
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