Former Vancouver Canucks captain Bo Horvat is headed back to the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Horvat’s new team, the New York Islanders, booked their postseason ticket tonight with a 4-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens.
Soak it all in, Islanders fans! 🙌 pic.twitter.com/JMhFExJQVt
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) April 13, 2023
The Islanders win means the Pittsburgh Penguins will miss the playoffs for the first time since Sidney Crosby’s rookie season in 2005-06. It ends the longest active playoff streak in major North American pro sports.
Pittsburgh suffered an embarrassing loss to the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday, losing 5-2 to one of the league’s worst teams on home ice, opening the door for the Isles to clinch tonight.
The Islanders are the 16th and final team to clinch a playoff spot, and will play either the Boston Bruins, Carolina Hurricanes, or New Jersey Devils in the first-round of the playoffs, which begin on Monday.
This is just the third trip to the playoffs for Horvat, who played postseason games as a Canucks rookie in 2015, and again in 2020.
The longtime Canuck drew criticism over the weekend when he described playing for the Islanders this season being “a lot better than Vancouver,” before walking back his comments and apologizing on Monday.
The Islanders’ postseason berth ensures that their first-round draft pick will transfer to the Detroit Red Wings this year. That draft pick was briefly held by the Canucks, as part of the return in January’s trade of Horvat, but flipped to Detroit in March as part of the Filip Hronek deal. The pick is now guaranteed to be 17th overall or later in this year’s draft.
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