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NHL Week 5 Wednesday (30 October): What Have We Learned?

We began NHL Week 5 Sunday night. Our Game 10 (G10) furlong calls are now complete and our attentions turn toward the G20 stretch.

Here we go with our notes…

The NHL As A Whole

1. West Versus East. See “…What Have We Learned?…” for 26 October to see the breakdown of this continuing saga. We will roll up this week for the 2 November blog.

2. The Week 5 OT/SO percentage will also be updated in the 2 November blog.

3. The PP / PK numbers? Ditto the above.

4. We begin with this blog working to analyze for the G20 calls as you will see in the graphics below. This is the last day this blog carries individual team G10 calls except when they are Chasing Stanley (CS) or Tee Time (T2)’s – those calls remain permanent unless a team reaches a point where they become a Shot Off The Post (SotP) with a reversal of fate. And tomorrow’s blog will discuss some team and individual player Top 5 advanced stats.

Now for the crux of our daily report: How do the Conferences look in light of the Playoff Qualifying Curve (PQC) and what remains on the G10 PQC Call schedule for this season?

The Eastern Conference

Our chart below indicates how the Eastern Conference projects against the PQC through Wednesday, 30 October’s games:

NHLeast30Oct

Some notes here reference G20 maximum calls:

1. Up to seven Eastern Conference teams can earn a Chasing Stanley (CS) call for G20.

2. Two more teams can reach a maximum of a Sharpening Skates (SS) call, or just short of IN the post-season.

3. Six teams cannot surpass an In The Curve (ITC) call.

4. No teams currently project to a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call or just short of OUT of the Playoffs.

5. And one team remains at Tee Time (T2) or OUT of 2014 Playoff contention – see below.

6. ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ shows the Top 8 teams and who their opponents project to be. Changes from Tuesday’s pairings did occur, however, and are:

  • Based on their loss to Anaheim, Boston dropped from the No. 1, to the No. 5 Seed and the second Atlantic Division pairing.
  • Toronto, based on their win in Calgary, moved from the No. 3 to No. 1 seed
  • And Tampa Bay moved up to the No. 3 seed due to Boston’s defeat on Wednesday night.

7. G10 PQC breakdown:

19 October 2013, First Niagara Center, Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo Sabres have been called at Tee Time (T2), or the first team called OUT of the 2014 Playoffs.

21 October 2013, Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, MI – The Detroit Red Wings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Air Canada Centre, Toronto, ON – The Toronto Maple Leafs have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, BB&T Center, Sunrise, FL – The Florida Panthers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Prudential Center, Newark, NJ – The New Jersey Devils have been called Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Montreal Canadiens have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – The Carolina Hurricanes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Rexall Place, Edmonton, AB – The Washington Capitals have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh, PA – Both the Pittsburgh Penguins and NY Islanders have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH – The Columbus Blue Jackets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC – The Ottawa Senators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA – The Boston Bruins have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC – The Tampa Bay Lightning have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, NY – The Philadelphia Flyers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

28 October 2013, Madison Square Garden, New York, NY – The New York Rangers have been called Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of elimination from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

8. The G20 Projection Schedule is (Atlantic Division teams are in BOLD Text):

TUE., 12 NOV – BUF

THUR., 14 NOV – NYI

FRI., 15 NOV – DET, FLA, MTL, WSH

SAT., 16 NOV – CAR, NJD, PIT, TBL, TOR

SUN., 17 NOV – CBJ, NYR, OTT

MON., 18 NOV – BOS

TUE., 19 NOV – PHI (the last G20 PQC call with COL and STL)

The Western Conference

Our Western Conference chart below indicates their PQC projections through Wednesday, 30 October’s games:

NHLwest30Oct

Western notes:

1. Up to 11 teams from the West can earn a CS call.

2. One Central Division team cannot surpass an SS call.

3. Two teams can earn an ITC call out of the West.

4. No team currently projects as a DoC call at this time.

5. And no teams project a G20, T2 call.

6. Based on Wednesday night’s contests, ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ pairings experienced only a swap of Los Angeles and Vancouver in the Wild Card seedings.

7. G10 PQC breakdown:

20 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus OH – The Vancouver Canucks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

21 October 2013, Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA – The Los Angeles Kings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Edmonton Oilers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

22 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – Both the Minnesota Wild and Nashville Predators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, MTS Center, Winnipeg, MB – The Winnipeg Jets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Jobing.com Arena, Glendale, AZ – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA The San Jose Sharks have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Anaheim Ducks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa, FL – The Chicago Blackhawks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Pepsi Center, Denver, CO  The Colorado Avalanche have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

26 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Dallas Stars have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

29 October 2013, Scottrade Center, St. Louis, MO – The St. Lois Blues have been called Sharpening Skates (SS), or just short of IN the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

8. The G20 Projection Schedule is (Central Division teams are in BOLD Text):

SUN., 10 NOV – VAN (the first G20 PAC call)

TUE., 12 NOV – ANA, WPG,

WED., 13 NOV – EDM

THUR., 14 NOV – PHX

FRI., 15 NOV – LAK, MIN, SJS

SAT., 16 NOV – CGY, CHI, NSH,

SUN., 17 NOV – DAL,

TUE., 19 NOV – COL, STL (the last G20 PQC call with PHI)

Our next blog will be posted on Friday, 1 November where we continue to track the G20 stretch…

NHL Week 5 Tuesday (29 October): What Have We Learned?

We began NHL Week 5 last night. We complete our G10 furlong calls with this summary. After this post,  we turn our attention to predictive analysis for the G20 stretch.

Here we go with our notes…

The NHL As A Whole

1. West Versus East. See “…What Have We Learned?…” for 26 October to see the breakdown of this continuing saga. We will roll up this week for the 2 November blog.

2. The Week 5 OT/SO percentage will also be updated in the 2 November blog.

3. The PP / PK numbers? Ditto the above.

4. Overall, we have two
teams at Chasing Stanley
in the Western Conference and one team at Tee Time in the East. And we are keeping our eyes on three Metropolitan Division teams (New Jersey, the Rangers and Philadelphia) to determine if they slide off into Tee Time status by G20.

Now for the crux of our daily report: How do the Conferences look in light of the Playoff Qualifying Curve (PQC) and what remains on the G10 PQC Call schedule for this season?

The Eastern Conference

Our chart below indicates how the Eastern Conference projects against the PQC through Tuesday, 29 October’s games:

NHLeast29Oct

Some notes here:

1. No Eastern Conference teams are Chasing Stanley (CS) at Game 10 (G10).

2. No Eastern Conference team rate a Sharpening Skates (SS) call, or just short of IN the post-season.

3. Eleven teams are an In The Curve (ITC) call.

4. Four teams rest at a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call or just short of OUT of the Playoffs.

5. And one team remains at Tee Time (T2) or OUT of 2014 Playoff contention – see below.

6. ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ shows the Top 8 teams and who their opponents project to be. Changes from Sunday’s pairings did occur, however, and are:

  • Boston moved up to the No. 1 Seed.
  • Tampa Bay dropped initially to the No. 3 seed, and then dropped again as Toronto moved up to the 3rd seed
  • And for the Wild Card teams, Montreal dropped to the No. 8 seed and Detroit moved up to No. 7.

8. G10 PQC breakdown:

19 October 2013, First Niagara Center, Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo Sabres have been called at Tee Time (T2), or the first team called OUT of the 2014 Playoffs.

21 October 2013, Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, MI – The Detroit Red Wings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Air Canada Centre, Toronto, ON – The Toronto Maple Leafs have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, BB&T Center, Sunrise, FL – The Florida Panthers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Prudential Center, Newark, NJ – The New Jersey Devils have been called Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Montreal Canadiens have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – The Carolina Hurricanes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Rexall Place, Edmonton, AB – The Washington Capitals have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh, PA – Both the Pittsburgh Penguins and NY Islanders have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH – The Columbus Blue Jackets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC – The Ottawa Senators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA – The Boston Bruins have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC – The Tampa Bay Lightning have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, NY – The Philadelphia Flyers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

28 October 2013, Madison Square Garden, New York, NY – The New York Rangers have been called Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of elimination from the 2014 NHL Playoffs. The Rangers had a dismal beginning to their season. How is it quantified? New coach with new system to learn. Hold out at camp. Injuries. Poor play. And Road Trip from Hell. All of these factors contribute to a brutal beginning, though none more than maybe a new system to learn coupled with multiple, key injuries. This team is in drastic need of a do over and hopefully are bailed out by better G20 play.

Our next blog will begin to run G20 projections and give you the G20 schedule.

The Western Conference

Our Western Conference chart below indicates their PQC projections through Tuesday, 29 October’s games:

NHLwest29Oct

Western notes:

1. One team from both divisions is a CS call.

2. One Central Division team is an SS call.

3. There are 10 ITC calls in the Western divisions.

4. One team is a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call at this time.

5. No teams are a G10, T2 call.

6. Based on Sunday night’s contests, ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ pairings experienced slight adjustment as Los Angeles, Phoenix and Vancouver continue to play musical seeds.

7. G10 PQC breakdown:

20 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus OH – The Vancouver Canucks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

21 October 2013, Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA – The Los Angeles Kings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Edmonton Oilers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

22 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – Both the Minnesota Wild and Nashville Predators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, MTS Center, Winnipeg, MB – The Winnipeg Jets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Jobing.com Arena, Glendale, AZ – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA The San Jose Sharks have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Anaheim Ducks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa, FL – The Chicago Blackhawks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Pepsi Center, Denver, CO  The Colorado Avalanche have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

26 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Dallas Stars have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

29 October 2013, Scottrade Center, St. Louis, MO – The St. Lois Blues have been called Sharpening Skates (SS), or just short of IN the 2014 NHL Playoffs. The Blues have played very well despite injuries running rampant through their forward core. They also entered the season with a media-fed goalie controversy that Jaroslav Halak has put to rest with a string of very strong performances in net. Cardinals playing for the MLB title and a winning Blues team give St. Louis residents plenty to cheer about. Look for continued strong play out of this team.

Our next blog will be posted on Friday, 1 November where we turn our attention to the G20 stretch where we already know nine Eastern and three Western teams cannot reach a CS call…

NHL Week 5 Sunday (27 October): What Have We Learned?

We began NHL Week 5 last night. We continue near-daily updates as 28 teams have completed their G10 furlong and the final two teams will be complete by Tuesday, 29 October.

Here we go with our notes…

The NHL As A Whole

1. West Versus East. See “…What Have We Learned?…” for 26 October to see the breakdown of this continuing saga. We will roll up this week for the 2 November blog.

2. The Week 5 OT/SO percentage will also be updated in the 2 November blog.

3. The PP / PK numbers? Ditto the above.

Now for the crux of our daily report: How do the Conferences look in light of the Playoff Qualifying Curve (PQC) and what remains on the G10 PQC Call schedule for this season?

The Eastern Conference

Our chart below indicates how the Eastern Conference projects against the PQC through Sunday, 27 October’s games:

NHLeast28Oct

Some notes here:

1.There are no changes to PQC calls from Saturday night’s game / Sunday’s blog.

2. No Eastern Conference teams are Chasing Stanley (CS) at Game 10 (G10).

3. No Eastern Conference team will rate a Sharpening Skates (SS) call, or just short of IN the post-season.

4. Twelve teams – see below – are already an ITC call. One more Eastern Conference teams will not land better than an ITC call.

5. Three teams cannot surpass a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call or just short of OUT of the Playoffs.

6. And one team has already been called at Tee Time (T2) or OUT of 2014 Playoff contention – see below.

7. ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ shows the Top 8 teams and who their opponents project to be. Changes from Sunday’s pairings did occur, however, and are:

  • Tampa Bay and Boston as Seeds 1 and 3 respectively changed based on the Bolts’ win on Sunday night.
  • For the Metro Division’s final two Seeds, Carolina moved up to No. 4 and home ice advantage and the Islanders moved up to their opponent based on Columbus’ loss to Anaheim.

8. G10 PQC breakdown:

19 October 2013, First Niagara Center, Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo Sabres have been called at Tee Time (T2), or the first team called OUT of the 2014 Playoffs.

21 October 2013, Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, MI – The Detroit Red Wings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Air Canada Centre, Toronto, ON – The Toronto Maple Leafs have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, BB&T Center, Sunrise, FL – The Florida Panthers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Prudential Center, Newark, NJ – The New Jersey Devils have been called Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Montreal Canadiens have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – The Carolina Hurricanes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Rexall Place, Edmonton, AB – The Washington Capitals have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh, PA – Both the Pittsburgh Penguins and NY Islanders have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH – The Columbus Blue Jackets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC – The Ottawa Senators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA The Boston Bruins have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC The Tampa Bay Lightning have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

26 October 2013, Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, NY The Philadelphia Flyers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

9. The final Eastern Conference PQC call comes Monday night for the Rangers in their home opener in the completely remodeled MSG. The schedule looks and looked like this:

SAT., 19 OCT – BUF (the first G10 call of the season)

MON., 21 OCT – DET

TUE., 22 OCT – FLA, TOR

THUR., 24 OCT – CAR, MTL, NJD, WSH

FRI., 25 OCT – CBJ, NYI, OTT, PIT

SAT., 26 OCT – BOS, PHI, TBL

MON., 28 OCT – NYR

The Western Conference

Our Western Conference chart below indicates their PQC projections through Sunday, 27 October’s games:

NHLwest28Oct

Western notes:

1. As with the Eastern Conference, there were no new PQC calls for the West on Sunday night.

2. One team from both divisions is a CS call.

3. One Central Division team can still pull off a SS call.

4. All 10 ITC calls are in.

5. One team sits as a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call at this time.

6. No teams currently project as a T2 maximum call.

7. Based on Sunday night’s contests, ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ pairings experienced slight adjustment:

  • There is no change to the Nos. 1 – 4 seeds.
  • Los Angeles’ SO win over Calgary moved them up as they played musical Playoff chairs with Phoenix and Vancouver.

8. G10 PQC breakdown:

20 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus OH – The Vancouver Canucks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

21 October 2013, Staples
Center, Los Angeles, CA
– The Los Angeles Kings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Edmonton Oilers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

22 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – Both the Minnesota Wild and Nashville Predators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, MTS Center, Winnipeg, MB – The Winnipeg Jets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Jobing.com Arena, Glendale, AZ – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA The San Jose Sharks have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Anaheim Ducks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa, FL – The Chicago Blackhawks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Pepsi Center, Denver, CO The Colorado Avalanche have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

26 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Dallas Stars have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

9. The Western Conference PQC call schedule is almost complete. St. Louis closes out the entire G10 furlong on Tuesday night, 29 October. Below is how the schedule ran and is running so far:

SUN., 20 OCT – VAN

MON., 21 OCT – LAK

TUE., 22 OCT – EDM, MIN, NSH, PHX, WPG

THUR., 24 OCT – ANA, CGY, CHI, SJS

FRI., 25 OCT – COL

SAT., 26 OCT – DAL

TUE., 29 OCT – STL (the last G10 call of the season)

Tuesday’s PQC analysis includes one more G10 call, followed by Wednesday’s last G10’er…

NHL Week 4 Saturday (26 October): What Have We Learned?

The NHL has finished Week 4. We are now in near-daily updates as 28 teams have completed their G10 furlong and the final two teams will be complete by Tuesday, 29 October.

Here we go with our notes…

The NHL As A Whole

1. West Versus East. For the week ending Saturday, 26 October, the East improved on their previous performance against the West. Producing a record of 27 – 39 – 9 / .420 Hockey, they improved from last week’s 20 – 32 – 5 / .395 Hockey performance. It is still the Metropolitan Division which is the overall losing culprit here with a combined 10 – 19 – 6 / .371 Hockey record for intra-Conference competition.

2. The current OT/SO percentage of 20.49% at the end of Week 3 increased a bit to 21.21% of all games played. The best team in extra frames so far is Vancouver at 5 – 1 followed by Los Angeles at 4 – 0. The basement team is New Jersey at 0 – 4.

3. The PP / PK numbers through Saturday, 26 October show St. Louis as the No. 1 PP team with a 30.3% rate. That stands as the only team at or above 30%. At No. 30 is still Anaheim with a 6.8% rate, one of two teams (with Buffalo) below 10% with the man advantage. Colorado leads on the PK at 91.2% and is the only team in the 90th percentile. All teams are above 70% when shorthanded, with Chicago (72.2%) and Edmonton (72.7%) the only teams below 75%. If you averaged the two special teams rankings, you might be surprised to note the best team is Washington at an average ranking of 2.5, followed by the Islanders, Toronto, Colorado and San Jose. Standings and intuition might indicate Toronto is propped up by their special teams play while Colorado and San Jose’s efforts show a more all-around team health. The worst combined ranking is Anaheim at a relative 29. The Ducks are preceded by Edmonton, Florida, Carolina and Boston in ascending order. The lower end shows if your 5-on-5 play is good enough (Boston and Anaheim) your special teams can be mediocre. And the lower end of the spectrum also both explains part of Edmonton and Florida’s woes and makes you wonder how the Hurricanes would stand with better special team performance.

Now for the crux of our daily report: How do the Conferences look in light of the Playoff Qualifying Curve (PQC) and what remains on the G10 PQC Call schedule for this season?

The Eastern Conference

Our chart below indicates how the Eastern Conference projects against the PQC through Saturday, 26 October’s games:

NHLeast26Oct

Some notes here:

1. No Eastern Conference teams are Chasing Stanley (CS) at Game 10 (G10).

2. No Eastern Conference team will rate a Sharpening Skates (SS) call, or just short of IN the post-season.

3. Twelve teams – see below – are already an ITC call. One more Eastern Conference teams will not land better than an ITC call.

4. Three teams cannot surpass a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call or just short of OUT of the Playoffs.

5. And one team has already been called at Tee Time (T2) or OUT of 2014 Playoff contention – see below.

6. ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ shows the Top 8 teams and who their opponents project to be. Changes from Wednesday’s pairings are:

  • Seeds 1 – 3 have not changed, and the opponent for the No. 3 seed also remains unchanged from yesterday.
  • Detroit’s loss on Saturday night moves them down to the 8th seed and Montreal up to the 7th spot.
  • And Columbus has moved up to the relative 4th seed and Carolina is their visitor based on the Islanders’ loss to Philadelphia.

7. G10 PQC breakdown:

19 October 2013, First Niagara Center, Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo Sabres have been called at Tee Time (T2), or the first team called OUT of the 2014 Playoffs.

21 October 2013, Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, MI – The Detroit Red Wings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Air Canada Centre, Toronto, ON – The Toronto Maple Leafs have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, BB&T Center, Sunrise, FL – The Florida Panthers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Prudential Center, Newark, NJ – The New Jersey Devils have been called Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Montreal Canadiens have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – The Carolina Hurricanes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, Rexall Place, Edmonton, AB – The Washington Capitals have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh, PA Both the Pittsburgh Penguins and NY Islanders have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH The Columbus Blue Jackets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC The Ottawa Senators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

  • 26 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA The Boston Bruins have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play. The Bruins’ strong, .700 opening record ties it with Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay for tops in the Eastern Conference. It also ties their Cup-winning 2010/11 season for best G10 start since the last Lockout. They are also in 7th place or better for all three of the major, advanced stats categories. If they could improve their bottom five PK, well, then, you might have the whole package. Either way, they are a strong contender to make the post-season.
  • 26 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC The Tampa Bay Lightning have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play. The Bolts are off to their second-best G10 start since the 2005/06 season. Their first best? The 2010/11, Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals season where the Bruins put them down by one, final goal before going on to win the Stanley Cup. Their PP is top 10 and PK is middle of the NHL pack. Their Corsi– and Fenwick For Percentages rank in the upper-20’s with a PDO at No. 7. So the question becomes whether or not they were the beneficiary of an average schedule in terms of difficulty level. We will see in the next 10 games as they play four Divisional contests, two back-to-back pairs and end the furlong with five games in eight days, four of which are on the road.
  • 26 October 2013, Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, NY The Philadelphia Flyers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs. The Flyers have now suffered two straight, difficult starts to seasonal play. Their dismal 1 – 6 start was hopefully just that, a dismal start. Captain Claude Giroux’s Messier-esque claim that the team would make the playoffs this year was followed up with two of their three wins. It will take a lot of desperation for that to happen as they battle through injuries, slumps and telling, advanced stats that have them no better than 15th in any of the three major categories.

8. The final Eastern Conference PQC call comes Monday night for the Rangers in their home opener at the completely remodeled MSG. The schedule looks and looked like this:

SAT., 19 OCT – BUF (the first G10 call of the season)

MON., 21 OCT – DET

TUE., 22 OCT – FLA, TOR

THUR., 24 OCT – CAR, MTL, NJD, WSH

FRI., 25 OCT – CBJ, NYI, OTT, PIT

SAT., 26 OCT – BOS, PHI, TBL

MON., 28 OCT – NYR

The Western Conference

Our Western Conference chart below indicates their PQC projections through Saturday, 26 October’s games:

NHLwest26Oct

Western notes:

1. One team from both divisions is a CS call.

2. One Central Division team can still pull off a SS call.

3. All 10 ITC calls are in.

4. One team sits as a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call at this time.

5. No teams currently project as a T2 maximum call.

6. There were no changes to ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ pairings since Friday’s report.

7. G10 PQC breakdown:

20 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus OH – The Vancouver Canucks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

21 October 2013, Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA – The Los Angeles Kings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Edmonton Oilers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.

22 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – Both the Minnesota Wild and Nashville Predators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, MTS Center, Winnipeg, MB – The Winnipeg Jets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

22 October 2013, Jobing.com Arena, Glendale, AZ – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA The San Jose Sharks have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Anaheim Ducks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa, FL – The Chicago Blackhawks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

24 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.

25 October 2013, Pepsi Center, Denver, CO The Colorado Avalanche have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.

  • 26 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Dallas Stars have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play. The Stars suffered from an inconsistent middle of their G10 schedule. After a 2 – 1 start to their first three games, they followed with a 1 – 4 center before gaining 3–of–4 points in their final two games at home. That 1 – 4 stretch’s losses were all road games. On the road, they were outplayed by Minnesota, barely outplayed by Colorado in the 1st Period, and lost to Los Angeles and Anaheim in the closing half of the contest. Oversimplified, they either don’t like the road yet, lack energy for the whole 60-minute game, or are relatively easy to adjust to as the game progresses. Their total output needs to raise advanced stat numbers from middle-of-the-pack or lower. This will indicate they are continuing to improve to a level of play that could see them into the post-season for the first time since 2007/08. Call it a “Take Two” for the G20-furlong as Dallas has a similar schedule in terms of level of difficulty as they had in their G10 stretch. After that, we will see where we are going.

8. The Western Conference PQC call schedule is almost complete as St. Louis will close out the G10 furlong on Tuesday night, 29 October. Below is how the schedule ran and is running so far:

SUN., 20 OCT – VAN

MON., 21 OCT – LAK

TUE., 22 OCT – EDM, MIN, NSH, PHX, WPG

THUR., 24 OCT – ANA, CGY, CHI, SJS

FRI., 25 OCT – COL

SAT., 26 OCT – DAL

TUE., 29 OCT – STL (the last G10 call of the season)

Tuesday’s PQC analysis includes one more G10 call, followed by Wednesday’s last G10’er…

NHL Week 4 Friday (25 October): What Have We Learned?

The NHL is playing out Week 4. We are now in daily updates as two teams have completed their G10 furlong and all but two teams do likewise by Saturday, 26 October.

Here we go with our notes…

The NHL As A Whole

1. West Versus East. For the week ending Saturday, 19 October, the East executed 20 – 32 – 5 / .395 Hockey against the West. We will update this again next Sunday, 27 October for games ending the day before.

2. We will also update the OT/SO percentage of 20.49% of total; games at the end of Week 3 next Sunday.

3. Ditto for PP / PK numbers after games played on Saturday, 26 October.

Now for the crux of our daily report: How do the Conferences look in light of the Playoff Qualifying Curve (PQC) and what remains on the G10 PQC Call schedule for this season?

The Eastern Conference

Our chart below indicates how the Eastern Conference projects against the PQC through Friday, 25 October’s games:

NHLeast25Oct

Some notes here:

1. No Eastern Conference teams are Chasing Stanley (CS) at Game 10 (G10).

2. Only one team in the Atlantic Division can rank as high a PQC call as Sharpening Skates (SS) or just short of IN the post-season.

3. Nine teams – see below – are already an ITC call. One more Eastern Conference teams will not land better than an ITC call.

4. Three teams cannot surpass a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call or just short of OUT of the Playoffs.

5. And one team has already been called at Tee Time (T2) or OUT of 2014 Playoff contention – see below.

6. ‘If The Playoffs Started Today’ shows the Top 8 teams and who their opponents project to be. Changes from Wednesday’s pairings are:

  • No change to the top two seeds.
  • Based on Toronto’s loss on Friday night, they abdicate their home ice advantage to Tampa Bay.
  • And a complete change in the last two, Metro Division seeds as Washington @ Carolina morph into Columbus at NY Islanders.

7. G10 PQC breakdown:

  • 19 October 2013, First Niagara Center, Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo Sabres have been called at Tee Time (T2), or the first team called OUT of the 2014 Playoffs.
  • 21 October 2013, Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, MI – The Detroit Red Wings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 22 October 2013, Air Canada Centre, Toronto, ON – The Toronto Maple Leafs have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 22 October 2013, BB&T Center, Sunrise, FL – The Florida Panthers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.
  • 24 October 2013, Prudential Center, Newark, NJ – The New Jersey Devils have been called Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.
  • 24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC The Montreal Canadiens have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 24 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN The Carolina Hurricanes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 24 October 2013, Rexall Place, Edmonton, AB The Washington Capitals have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 25 October 2013, Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh, PA Both the Pittsburgh Penguins and NY Islanders have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play. The Pens would have finished higher had they not dropped their last two games. They are playing well despite injuries. Of concern, however, is their next 10 game stretch is their most difficult one of the season based on Intra-Divisional and Back-To-Back games plus time to recover in between contests. The Islanders just produced their second best G10 PQC since the first Lockout. They are a mix of bottom-five in Corsi– and Fenwick For %, and Top 10 in PDO, however. Their G1-10 was their least difficult stretch of the season and G11 – 20 will be their most difficult. So watch for the Isles to either ramp up their game in the next couple of matches or be prepared for them to fall by the wayside within 20 games.
  • 25 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH The Columbus Blue Jackets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play. The ‘Jackets were the beneficiary of their easiest stretch of 10 games this season, and a frankly terrible Metro Division run. Still, their advanced stats are all at 13th or higher in the NHL and they are 12th in the League on the PP. And they are in the Top 20 in Goals For which also outpaces their opponents by a smidge. Keep an eye on C.B.J. as they may claw and scratch their way into a Metro 2 or 3 seed to make the post-season.  
  • 25 October 2013, Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, QC The Ottawa Senators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play. So the Sens are not playing as well as they did last season. Their .500 Hockey indicates there might be some underlying issues there. Their advanced stat positions relative to the rest of the League marks them as No. 17.333 which would cull them just off the playoff list. Still, their PP is Top 15 and PK is Top 10 in the League, and that .500 Hockey stems from a season opening 1 – 2 – 2 mark. We just are not sure how they will turn out yet.

8. The rest of the Eastern Conference PQC call schedule rolls out like this with Friday night bringing us two – thirds of the Atlantic’s remaining G10 PQC calls. (Metropolitan Division teams are in BOLD text.):

SAT., 19 OCT – BUF (the first G10 call of the season)

MON., 21 OCT – DET

TUE., 22 OCT – FLA, TOR

THUR., 24 OCT – CAR, MTL, NJD, WSH

FRI., 25 OCT – CBJ, NYI, OTT, PIT

SAT., 26 OCT – BOS, PHI, TBL

MON., 28 OCT – NYR

The Western Conference

Our Western Conference chart below indicates their PQC projections through Friday, 25 October ’s games:

NHLwest25Oct

Western notes:

1. One Pacific Division team is a CS call, with two Central Division teams’ CS fates to be determined.

2. No teams can still pull off a SS call.

3. Nine of 10 teams ITC calls are in.

4. And one team sits as a Dusting Off Clubs (DoC) call at this time.

5. No teams currently project as a T2 maximum call.

6. There are several changes to the projected Playoff pairings since Wednesday’s report:

  • No change to Chicago @ St. Louis.
  • Rank order of visiting teams switched as Phoenix and Los Angeles dropped and Vancouver rose.

7. G10 PQC breakdown:

  • 20 October 2013, Nationwide Arena, Columbus OH – The Vancouver Canucks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 21 October 2013, Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA – The Los Angeles Kings have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 22 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Edmonton Oilers have been called at Dusting Off Clubs (DoC), or just short of eliminated from the 2014 NHL Playoffs.
  • 22 October 2013, Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN – Both the Minnesota Wild and Nashville Predators have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 22 October 2013, MTS Center, Winnipeg, MB – The Winnipeg Jets have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 22 October 2013, Jobing.com Arena, Glendale, AZ – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 24 October 2013, TD Garden, Boston, MA The San Jose Sharks have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs.
  • 24 October 2013, Centre Bell, Montreal, QC – The Anaheim Ducks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 24 October 2013, St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa, FL – The Chicago Blackhawks have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 24 October 2013, American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX – The Phoenix Coyotes have been called In The Curve (ITC), or about average for NHL play.
  • 25 October 2013, Pepsi Center, Denver, CO The Colorado Avalanche have been called Chasing Stanley (CS), or the first team called IN the 2014 Playoffs. Mark it down, Avs fans – if you were at Pepsi Center last night, you saw the game where Colorado clenched a playoff berth. The hottest team in the NHL landed their best G10 mark since the last Lockout, improving on the .800 Hockey that began the 2009/10 season when the last saw post-season action. Only three words of caution here: 1) they benefit from the easiest schedule in the Western Conference this year and just had their easiest 10-game stretch of the year; 2) they benefit from Columbus and Detroit no longer in the Central Division where they rest; 3) and in 2009/10, the lull came in the Game 11 – 40 timeframe. So manage your expectations appropriately.

8. The Western Conference PQC call schedule is rolling. We will have four calls on Thursday night, our most active PQC night of the G10 cycle. (Central Division teams are in BOLD print):

SUN., 20 OCT – VAN

MON., 21 OCT – LAK

TUE., 22 OCT – EDM, MIN, NSH, PHX, WPG

THUR., 24 OCT – ANA, CGY, CHI, SJS

FRI., 25 OCT – COL

SAT., 26 OCT – DAL

TUE., 29 OCT – STL (the last G10 call of the season)

Thursday’s PQC analysis includes TWO more G10 calls…

Twitter Updates

  • ...This suggests that the LAK will defeat CHI in Game 6 to play the NYR for the Stanley Cup 2 years ago
  • Since 2005/6, when a Round 3 team wins Game 5, they lose Game 6 66.7% of the time; also, Western series are determined by Game 5.889... 2 years ago
  • ...So those stats point to the NYR claiming victory tonight and playing the winner from the Western Conference in the Finals 2 years ago
  • Since 2005/6, when a Round 3 team wins Game 5, they lose Game 6 60% of the time; also, Eastern series are determined by Game 5.778... 2 years ago
  • 4. Top 4 in each DIV play 2 rounds seeded within the DIV, 1 round versus other DIV champ and then the Finals between the Conference champs. 2 years ago

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