As feared, a tired Islanders team lost last night to their rested bitter rivals. Unfortunately, the power rankings don't take fatigue into consideration. But for this week's article, it doesn't matter, as the data only goes through March 9. But first...
Weekly Roundup of Opinion Polls
The list of participants is shrinking, my friends, but starting next week, we will have a new entry, thanks to a new reader who will be so kind as to translate a Montreal-based publication's French language text.
|Site||Updated||New Ranking||Prior Ranking||Comments|
|CBS||3/10/2015||6||6||The Islanders have their New York neighbors breathing down their necks for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division, but they should get a boost with Kyle Okposo back soon. Meanwhile, John Tavares has taken over the league scoring lead with 72 points in 68 games.|
|ESPN||3/9/2015||6||6||John Tavares deserves to be one of the three Hart Trophy finalists this season. Case closed.|
|Fox||3/5/2015||7||4||The Islanders made minor tweaks at the trade deadline, adding fourth-liner Tyler Kennedy and backup goalie Michael Neuvirth. We're not sure that will be enough to survive the Penguins, Rangers and Caps in the Metropolitan Division.|
|USA Today||3/8/2015||7||6||John Tavares is carrying the Islanders, recording eight points over their last six games in a 3-1-2 stretch.|
|Average||7||6||That John Tavares guy…. He's kinda good, isn't he?|
Lofty praise from the Worldwide Leader. It's almost as though they started paying attention to hockey again because they won TV rights to some games or something. But in all seriousness, it's refreshing to hear JT getting recognition.
LHH Power Rankings
(For all games through 3/9/15)
|GP||Reg W||OT W||SO||OT L||Reg L||LHH Pts||LHH Pct||LHH Rating|
|1||New York Rangers||64||32||5||8||2||17||240||0.625||118|
|4||Tampa Bay Lightning||67||37||2||6||2||20||252||0.627||115|
|5||New York Islanders||68||30||6||10||1||21||236||0.578||113|
|7||Detroit Red Wings||65||28||6||12||2||17||232||0.595||110|
|10||St. Louis Blues||65||29||4||11||2||19||227||0.582||109|
|13||San Jose Sharks||67||28||2||8||3||26||206||0.512||104|
|15||Los Angeles Kings||65||28||1||9||6||21||211||0.541||102|
|24||New Jersey Devils||66||23||1||10||4||28||180||0.455||91|
|25||Toronto Maple Leafs||67||21||2||6||3||35||158||0.393||90|
|26||Columbus Blue Jackets||65||20||3||6||2||34||154||0.395||90|
The Isles hold steady, while a bunch of other teams move in ways I can't comment on too much right now because I don't feel like being rational after watching the NHL hand a victory to the Rangers. But instead, I have another little nugget of information I think you guys will find interesting...
The Magic Numbers for All Eastern Conference Teams
It is assumed that the teams in playoff position would lose a tie breaker to the 9th place team, and therefore must finish with one more point to qualify. The Pts column is the NHL teams' points as of 3/9/15. Max Pts is the maximum number of points a team can still earn this year. The team with the ninth highest maximum point total - the Sens - are the team all magic numbers are based on.
|2||New York Islanders||43||21||4||90||118||18|
|3||Tampa Bay Lightning||41||20||6||88||118||20|
|4||New York Rangers||40||17||7||87||123||21|
|6||Detroit Red Wings||37||17||11||85||119||23|
|12||New Jersey Devils||28||28||10||66||98|
|13||Toronto Maple Leafs||26||35||6||58||88|
|14||Columbus Blue Jackets||27||34||4||58||92|
The Isles likely only need 17 points since they'll likely win the tie breaker against the Sens (who are way behind in ROWs), but better safe than sorry. Tonight, the Isles lost, but so did the Sens, so the Isles' magic number is now 16 (all other top eight teams also benefited).
Obviously, teams outside of the top 8 would have rather large numbers, and they won't be shown here for clarity's sake. We'll keep this exercise going until the 8 playoff spots are known.