Sunday, April 5, 2009

Sunday Morning Sanity Check

With 8 days left in the regular season, time to take stock of where things stand in this insane playoff race. The Tracker at the right has been updated through the games of last night, so you can view some of this there. But to summarize:
  • CBJ hold 6th place with 89 points. We have 40 wins, a 1 point lead over 7th place Anaheim and 3 point leads over 8th and 9th place Nashville and St. Louis.
  • We have a game in hand over Anaheim, St. Louis and Nashville
  • A win tonight formally eliminates Edmonton from the ranks of those who could pass us, and forces Minnesota, St. Louis and Nashville to win out, while we lose the remainder, to pass us.
  • Any regulation loss by Nashville in the remaining three games means we need only have 1 OTL to shut Nashville out from passing us.
  • We can shut St. Louis out from passing us by beating them in Game 81, regardless of what happens in other games.

Bottom line is that we are in control of our own destiny and some pretty special things have to happen to knock us out of the playoffs. Here are the records of all of the contending teams during the Dirty Dozen -- the final 12 games of the regular season.

  • Anaheim 8 -1 - 0 16/18 possible points .889 points percentage
  • St. Louis 6 - 2 - 1 13/18 possible points .722 points percentage
  • Chicago 5 - 2 - 0 10/14 possible points .714 points percentage
  • Columbus 4 - 1 - 3 11/16 possible points .688 points percentage
  • Nashville 4 - 2 - 3 11/18 possible points .611 points percentage
  • Minnesota 4 - 3- 1 9/16 possible points .563 points percentage
  • Vancouver 4 - 3- 1 9/16 possible points .563 points percentage
  • Calgary 3 -5 - 0 6/16 possible points .375 points percentage
  • Edmonton 3 -6 - 0 6/18 possible points .333 points percentage
  • Dallas 2 - 5 - 2 6/18 possible points .333 points percentage
  • LA 2 - 5 - 1 5/16 possible points .313 points percentage

To put this in perspective, if the CBJ had played at this pace all year, they would have 112 points for the season. It also shows how tough it is to make up points down the stretch. St. Louis is on a tear, yet if the CBJ win tonight, they will have made up zero points over the Jackets in the stretch. Under the same circumstances, i.e. a Jackets win tonight, Nashville will have lost 2 points to the Jackets, despite playing over .600 in the Dirty Dozen. Anaheim is playing in another celestial sphere right now, and you can only tip your hat to them and say "well done."

Jackets are playing some excellent hockey at the moment, and are showing the kind of grit you need to earn tough points down the stretch. Jackets earned 20 points in March -- slaughtering the old record. It is a nerve-wracking experience, to be sure, but the boys are getting it done.

This promises to be a fun week in Central Ohio. Fat lady ain't singing, but she is practicing her scales! Go Jackets!


Rick said...

Excellent! I linked to this post in my newest article on The Hockey Writers. I hope you don't mind.

JAL said...

That's fine, Rick. All publicity is good publicity, as they say.

Go Jackets!