The first Big Ten men’s hockey regular season wraps up this weekend, which means the first Big Ten Men’s Hockey Tournament is next week. The Big Ten will release the official six-team bracket on Saturday after the No. 1-ranked Minnesota plays at Michigan on BTN/BTN2Go.
Right now, of course, the bracket is blank (see the bracket PDF here) as the regular season title is still up for grabs between Minnesota and Wisconsin. The top two seeds get a first-round bye.
We do know this: No. 3 Michigan will play No. 6 Penn State on Thursday. Also Thursday, No. 4 or No. 5 Ohio State will play No. 4 or No. 5 Michigan State, with their final seeds still to be determined.
Here are the latest standings with two games remaining (and a possible six points).
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Here are the clinching scenarios for first-place Minnesota on Friday. The only way that Minnesota doesn’t clinch at least a share of the Big Ten title on Friday is if they lose to Michigan and Wisconsin beats Michigan State.
Wisconsin clinches the regular season title over Minnesota only if the Badgers sweep two games against Michigan State and the Gophers lose both games to Michigan,.
- Minnesota clinches the outright championship with a win or a shootout win regardless of Wisconsin’s result
- Minnesota clinches the outright championship with a Wisconsin loss or shootout loss, regardless of Minnesota’s result
- Minnesota clinches the outright championship with a shootout loss AND a Wisconsin shootout win, shootout loss or loss
- Minnesota clinches the outright championship with a loss AND a Wisconsin shootout loss or loss
- Minnesota clinches at least a share with a shootout loss, regardless of Wisconsin’s result
- Minnesota clinches at least a share with a Wisconsin shootout win, regardless of Minnesota’s result
- Minnesota clinches a share with a shootout loss AND a Wisconsin win
- Minnesota clinches a share with a loss AND a Wisconsin shootout win
The tournament is March 20-22 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota, and all five games will air live on BTN/BTN2Go, too. Find more advance information on the tournament at BigTen.org, and be sure to follow @B1GHockey on Twitter.