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Sharks clinch playoff spot with loss by Kings

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			Sharks clinch playoff spot with loss by Kings

SAN JOSE — The Sharks qualified for the playoffs for the 19th time in their franchise’s history on Tuesday after Los Angeles lost to Edmonton 2-1, making it impossible for the Kings, who sit in ninth place in the Western Conference, to catch San Jose.

The Kings, with 77 points, now have just seven games left and reach a maximum of 91 points. The Sharks had 91 points entering Tuesday, and would own the first tie-breaker with Los Angeles — regulation or overtime wins. The Sharks had 40 entering their game against the New York Rangers and the Kings, even if they win their last six games, could only get to 39.

Tickets for the first round go on sale Wednesday at 9 a.m. at www.SJSharks.com/playoffs, by phone 1-800-745-3000 or at the ThreatMatrix Ticket Office at SAP Center in San Jose. The first round schedule will be announced upon the conclusion of the NHL’s regular season April 9.

Edmonton also clinched a playoff spot with the win, its first berth in the postseason since 2006.

The Sharks led the Rangers 2-1 midway through the second period when the Kings’ game with the Oilers ended.

The Sharks have now reached the postseason in 12 of the last 13 seasons, missing only in 2014-15.

Where the Sharks finish in the Pacific Division and the Western Conference likely won’t be decided until their final homestand. The Sharks host Vancouver on April 4, Edmonton on April 6 and finish the regular season at home against Calgary on April 8. The NHL playoffs begin April 12.

As of this moment, the Sharks are now two points back of both Edmonton and Anaheim, which have 93 points each. The Ducks were playing Vancouver in the NHL’s other West Coast game Tuesday.

The Sharks were also just one point ahead of Calgary, which is fourth in the Pacific, and three points ahead of the second wild card team, St. Louis.

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