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Minnesota Wild have 3 possible playoff scenarios

Colorado controls its destiny, and that plays a big role in Minnesota's fate.
Kevin Fiala

Colorado's 2-1 win over Vegas Monday night means the Wild still don't know if they'll face Colorado or Vegas in the opening round of the playoffs next week. 

Minnesota will finish third or second in the West Division, though it's likely that they'll wind up third. The biggest factor in determining who they'll face in the first round will be decided by the West Division winner, Colorado or Vegas. 

Wild finish 3rd and face No. 2 Vegas

Colorado's win Monday night keeps this scenario very much alive, and the Avs can steal the West Division title by winning out against Los Angeles Wednesday-Thursday. Colorado also wins the division in any tiebreaker scenario, so the Avs 100% control their own destiny – even if Vegas beats San Jose in its regular season finale Wednesday.  

Wild finish 3rd and face No. 2 Colorado

If Vegas wins the division and Colorado secures at least one of four remaining possible points, the first-round matchup between the Wild and Avs will be set. It's that simple. 

Wild finish 2nd and face No. 3 Colorado

The only way the Wild can obtain the No. 2 seed and gain home ice in the first round of the playoffs is if Colorado loses out and Minnesota beats St. Louis Wednesday and Thursday. The chances of that happening aren't great considering the Avalanche face the Kings Wednesday and Thursday – a team they've won five of six against this season. 

Minnesota went 2-2 at home against the Avs but lost three of four at Ball Arena in Colorado during the regular season, including a handful of games where the Avs absolutely thumped them.

Against Vegas, the Wild went 2-2 in Sin City and 3-1 in St. Paul. Vegas has clearly been a better matchup for Minnesota, even though they too are among the favorites with Colorado to represent the Western Conference in the Stanley Cup Finals.

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