Let’s get one thing out of the way: I’m going to be enjoying the return of the NHL post-lockout. I’m a forgiving guy who never took it personally, my job is in hockey, and I don’t think that me giving up on the NHL is going to make one lick of difference to them, so don’t rain on my parade today. It’s over, we’re hockey people, hockey’s back = yay!
The best thing to come from this right now is that like the Eye of Sauron, we can firmly fix our gaze on actual hockey instead of the little Hobbits that’ve been dragging us through the Dead Marshes of boring legalese (nerd!).
Whatever, those movies ruled.
So let’s turn our focus to hockey! In sorting out my thoughts on the 2013 season this weekend, it occurred to me just how many exciting storylines there are to play out, not to mention how many things I’d just plum forgot about. So let’s look at the big ones, and refresh our memories a little bit:
Had you told me at the start of the year that Los Angeles and San Jose would be battling for a chance to win the Southeast on the final day of the season, I'd have said "yeah, that sounds reasonable." Also would have said "they're both good teams."
The National Hockey League season typically ends on a Sunday, but this season, for whatever reason, the league scheduled 15 games—all 30 teams, to play at some point on Saturday as a prelude to the playoffs.
Of course, all the playoff match ups were set Thursday night with everything falling into place for Washington, Dallas, San Jose, Phoenix and Los Angeles as the late entrants to the dance, but that still doesn’t mean that seeding and, just as important, draft lottery position, can’t change on the league’s final day.
So we may as well spend the afternoon going through every game and determining what’s on the line for each, starting with a game that is already in progress. My, the team that is ahead in this one certainly looks strong today, don’t they?
Chicago Blackhawks vs. Detroit Red Wings
The first tie-breaker is the “greater number of games won, excluding games won in the Shootout”. With a Chicago win in regulation, the teams will be tied at 101 points and 39 regulation or overtime victories (ROWs). The second tie-breaker is “the greater number of points earned in games between the two clubs”. Chicago have earned eight points in the five games played between the teams this season to Detroit’s four (Chicago are 3-0-2) in the season series. Read the rest of this entry »
Okay, Islanders/Jets, let’s talk about this heated battle….
No? Okay, no. Let’s try a different game first.
I’ve seen these games broken down a number of different ways, and half the time I end up more confused than I was before reading the break down. So, I’ll try to do this in simple, plain english. Here’s what’s up on tonight’s NHL schedule.
And, it undeniably is. Maybe not for quality, but for the sake of playoff implications, for sure.
The NHL’s Southeast division can only be accurately described by a term once used in a commercial: it’s a traveshamockery. I suppose words like “cluster[curse]” would work fine too, but you get the point. It’s a mess.
If all divisional winners weren’t granted top seeds, the Florida Panthers would be in 7th in the East (72 points), the Capitals would be in 8th (69 points), and the Jets would be in 9th (68 points).
Not a single team in their division has a positive goal differential – the Capitals have posted the best number to date, -6. Hold your applause, please.