(If you regularly read this NHL analysis, start under the title “The Chart,” and don’t miss the ending section “What Do We Already Know?”.)
Below is your NHL Point Predictor and Playoff Qualifying Curve (PQC) update for NHL games ending Friday, 15 February. What are we showing here? Where the NHL is going, not where they are after the last game played.
How Will We Do It? Check back here daily as we provide you the simple chart below where you can follow the NHL’s projected standings leading up to the Playoffs. The chart tells you two things: each team’s finishing points based on current play projected over the 48 game season; and our PQC calls as every team reaches each 10-game marker (i.e. Game 10, 20, 30, etc.). As teams’ PQC calls change, their standings’ line color changes to the appropriate PQC designation as explained below.
The 15 February Chart
Here are the two Conferences’ projected, final standings points after games completed on 15 February:
From or current chart, it looks like it will take at least 27.5 wins / 55 points in either Conference to qualify for the playoffs. Currently, 3.5 wins separate projected 8th and 9th places in both Conferences, while tie-breakers continue to be the difference for the West’s 9th and 12th seeds.
Here are notes to explain the chart:
1. NHL Conferences are shown Western and Eastern from left to right as they would be on a map. The far left column in each chart titled ‘NHL Stnd’ indicates current team NHL standings as of the posted date. And teams use standard NHL abbreviations and color schemes.
2. ‘GP’ = Games Played.
3. ‘eW’ = Estimated Wins, our own formulary as the season progresses.
4. ‘eL’ = Estimated Losses
5. ‘eOTL’ = Estimated Overtime Losses, the third point in three-point games
6. ‘ePts’ = Estimated Points
7. ‘ePt Rnk’ = Estimated Points Rank, our order of how they will fare overall
8. And the ‘PQC Code’: ‘CS’ = Chasing Stanley, or IN the Playoffs; ‘SS’ = Sharpening Skates, or just shy of IN the Playoffs; ‘ITC’ = In The Curve, or playing right about on average; ‘DoC’ = Dusting Off Clubs, or almost OUT of the Playoffs; ‘T2’ = Tee Time, or OUT of the Playoffs; and ‘SotP’ = Shot Off The Post, or a bad call of CC or T2. Remember, the PQC Codes get called every 10 games.
“What Do We Already Know?”
We know 22 – of – 30 / 73.3% of NHL clubs have a shot at a CC call by G20.
We also know 14 teams – seven from each Conference – will not be eliminated from playoff contention by G20.
If we started the playoffs today based on projected standings, in the East, FLA, PHI and WSH would be out for CAR, MTL and TOR when compared to last season’s end. In he West, out would be LAK and PHX for ANA and DAL.
And overall, the first G20 PQC call will be Philadelphia on 23 February and the last will be Boston on 5 March.
Eastern Conference PQC and Stats
Boston remains the East’s only CS team as of G10. Nine more (for a total of 10) of the Conference’s 15 teams retain the possibility of earning a CS call. Three more teams cannot beat a Sharpening Skates (SS) call, while one cannot top In the Curve (ITC). Of those 11, seven remain a lock not to fall to a T2 call by G20. And Washington remains a T2 call unless proven otherwise once Playoff time rolls around.
Projected top stats for forwards, defensemen and goalies in the East are shown below to assist you with your Fantasy Hockey analysis:
As you can see for scoring, the projected average for goals scored is under 40 now, with maximum projected points under 80. IF a .973 Save Percentage survived the season, it would vastly outpace Brian Elliott’s 2011-12 record of .9403, a feat that is likely not to happen.
Western Conference PQC and Stats
Chicago remains both undefeated in regulation time and the West’s only CS team as of G10. Along with the Blackhawks, 11 (down from 13) more teams (for a total of 12 teams) still have a shot of ending the G20 stretch as a CS call. Two more teams cannot beat an SS call, while one is not going to be better than ITC. Of those 15, seven (up from five) are already a lock not to fall to a T2 call by G20.
Finally, here are the projected stats in the West:
Scoring in the West is a bit behind the Eastern pace. The projected average for goals scored is under 35 now, with maximum projected points under 75. And the highest, projected .943 Save Percentage, would also beat Brian Elliott’s 2011-12 record and is no more likely to happen than it is in the East.
G10’s (IN or OUT calls):
Sunday, 10 February 2013, HSBC Arena, Buffalo, NY – Based on their play through G10, the Boston Bruins are the second team designated as Chasing Stanley, or IN the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs
Tuesday, 5 February 2013, HP Pavilion, San Jose, CA – Based on their play through G10, the Chicago Blackhawks are the first team designated as Chasing Stanley, or IN the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Tuesday, 5 February 2013, Verizon Center, Washington, DC – Based on their play through G10, the Washington Capitals are the first NHL team designated at Tee Time (T2), or ELIMINATED from the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs
This is the updated NHL Point Predictor and PQC Standings chart based on games ending 15 February. We already know we have one each CS team in each Conference and one T2 team in the East.
A total of 22 teams have a shot at a CS call going into their Game 20. Five others cannot top an SS call. Only two cannot top an ITC call and one more is eliminated from the Playoffs. And, of course, we have one CS call.
Your next update will be posted after games played on Saturday, 16 February.
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