The red-hot Penguins finished the season No. 1 in SI.com's NHL Power Rankings, but have a major question mark for the playoffs.

By Allan Muir
April 11, 2016

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Before we put a bow on the regular season, consider what we've learned in the final days ahead of the playoffs:

The Penguins have established themselves as the favorites to emerge from the Eastern Conference by winning 16 of their final 20 games.

The Capitals were dominant in a 5–1 win over the Blues on Saturday, but look vulnerable after a sluggish home stretch.

The success of three teams in the West—Dallas, Anaheim and San Jose—could hinge on the ability of their coach to name the right player to man the pipes.

The Panthers could have a cake walk to the Eastern finals.

Discount Dallas at your own peril. This team really is that good. 

It's sad to imagine what the Lightning could have been if only they'd stayed healthy.

The Flyers are going to be a handful. So will the Predators.

One of the league's top-five teams, either St. Louis or Chicago, will be golfing inside of two weeks.

The Bruins are a middle-of-the-road team trending the wrong way.

It's been a blast so far. Can't wait to see what happens next.

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Biggest jump: Winnipeg Jets (28 to 22)

Biggest drop: Colorado Avalanche (23 to 30)

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