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Toronto

Maple Leafs clinch playoff spot for eighth year in a row

TORONTO – The Toronto Maple Leafs clinched a playoff berth Friday night without stepping on the ice.

Toronto started the day with four clinch scenarios depending on the results of games involving the Philadelphia Flyers, Detroit Red Wings and Washington Capitals.

All three of those teams lost Friday as the Maple Leafs secured a post-season berth for the eighth year in a row.

Toronto (43-23-9) is third in the NHL’s Atlantic Division standings with 95 points. The Maple Leafs, who have seven games left to play in the regular season, will visit the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night.

Toronto hasn’t won the Stanley Cup since 1967.

The idle Tampa Bay Lightning, who are two points behind Toronto, also clinched a playoff spot when the Flyers, Red Wings and Capitals all lost in regulation.

The Lightning currently hold the first Eastern Conference wild-card spot. Tampa Bay is looking to win the Stanley Cup for the third time in five years.

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