Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Baseline

I've come up with an analysis of the eastern conference standings that I call the Baseline. It represents the final standings if each team goes .500 for the rest of the season. This is useful for two reasons: it accounts for the differing numbers of games left to play for each team and given how difficult it is to climb in the standings when games can be worth three points it provides a reasonable indication of the final standings.

1 PIT 97
2 NJ 97
3 CAR 87
4 MON 96
5 OTT 95
6 BOS 93
7 NYR 92
8 PHI 89
9 BUF 88
10 NYI 85
11 WAS 85
12 TOR 82
13 FLA 81
14 ATL 80
15 TBL 75

I doubt any of the contending teams is going to go on a big losing streak. So the final standings will be determined by which teams can do better than .500.

Looking at the table we can see that first place in the conference is very much up for grabs. Nobody is going to inherit the conference title based on their current record. Excluding Carolina, any one of the top 7 teams has a legitimate shot provided they can manage a significant winning streak in their remaining games.

The race for the southeast division title is pretty much between Carolina and Washington. The division title is the only way any teams from the southeast are going to the playoffs. Washington is going to have to pick up 3 or more points against Carolina, which is very possible.

The eighth and final spot is also very much up for grabs. It's safe to say that Tampa Bay is out of it. Atlanta, Florida and Toronto are also long shots. The bubble teams are the Senators, Bruins, Rangers, Flyers, Sabres, and Islanders. That's six teams vying for four spots.

As for the Bruins, as long as they can go .500 for their remaining games they should make it to the post season. If they go on another winning streak the conference title is in reach.

I'll redo the analysis every few days to see how things shake out.

1 comment:

jimbuff said...

After this week I think we can safely rule out a conference title! Bah!

Anyway I will be posting everyday from now until the Bruins last game. I had a big life change I will explain in my blog.

Keep the faith Bruin's r still in good shape.