A Full C7 Magazine of Thoughts

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GigantorTheGoalie
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A Full C7 Magazine of Thoughts

Post by GigantorTheGoalie » Fri May 20, 2016 4:36 am

“Four” and “five”. Those two words are causing some GM’s relief, to others a meaningless countdown, to a small amount it’s a countdown to failure and to the rest it’s a countdown that can’t hit zero soon enough. Or maybe you live in Northern WesterosHL and all you keep saying is “Playoffs are coming”. No matter how you put it there are races for playoff positions and jostling for preferred position in the playoffs. So enough with this intro and let’s get into the thick of things.

1. We’ll start with the playoff race. Currently three teams are fighting it out in the East and in the West there are two teams fighting it out.

2. The Eastern playoff race is simple as it gets. Two wild card positions being fought over by three teams. All three teams are from the Atlantic: Panthers, Canadiens, and the Red Wings in this order.

3. Right now odds are high that the Panthers fall out as they are 3-5-2 in their last 10 games while both the Habs and Red Wings have stepped it up. Word is that Barkov is being pressed back into service after missing the past 4 games due to injury.

4. The Montreal Canadiens are last year’s Tampa Bay Lightning. Habs spent 2/3 of the season in the bottom half of the East and are now in a playoff position with 5 games left to play on their schedule.

5. The Western Conference playoff race is a shock even to those who have a clear disdain for the West.

6. Right now the 32-33-13 Vancouver Canucks currently sit in a playoff position with the 31-34-12 Arizona Coyotes as their only competition.

7. For comparison the last team to make the playoffs with an under .500 record was in the 1998/99 season when both the 31-33-18 San Jose Sharks and the 33-37-12 Edmonton Oilers were in the playoffs.

8. Not saying that the Canucks or Coyotes can’t get to over .500 hockey; it’s just that it’s astonishing in a 30 team league this can happen.

9. Now onto the jostling and fighting for preferred playoff positions. We’ll start in the West this time.

10. The Oilers have first in the West locked up. Sorry Avalanche fans but those promises for 1st in the league this year have fallen flat.

11. The Avalanche are however in a neck-and-neck race for 2nd in the West with fellow Central teams Minnesota Wild and the Chicago Blackhawks.

12. For the top three teams in the Central though it doesn’t matter very much where they end up. There will be no easy match-ups in the Central bracket.

13. If you finish 1st in the Central that means you play the Blues who are inconsistent but contain the WHL’s leading scorer Vladimir Tarasenko. Not to mention the top two rookies in the league Ivan Barbashev and Robby Fabbri.

14. If you finish 2nd in the Central then you are playing a team that is more-likely-then-not on par with your own. If you’re the betting type of man, put down 7 games for that series and flip a coin for the winner.

15. In the West however the best spot to be in is probably 2nd in the Pacific. You’ll get to play a team that is currently 20th in points in the league. If you’re the Oilers you’re feeling good you finished first in the Western Conference. However ¼ of your brain is thinking “that first round match-up would be perfect for us if we finished 2nd”

16. Back to the East. Sabres have the East locked up tighter then Fort Knox. The rest of the Conference though is in flux.

17. The Metro division is in the same situation as the Central division in the Western conference. Three teams fighting it out for 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the Metro.

18. Unlike in the West though, if you finish 1st in the Metro you will be playing a comparable team from the Atlantic division.

19. Combine that with the fact that the Columbus Blue Jackets are losing Sergei Bobrovsky until next season, a team might be feeling lucky if they end up in a 2 vs. 3 match-up with the Blue Jackets rather than a 1 vs. 4 match-up with the Panthers/Habs/Red Wings.

20. The last part of the conference that is up in the air are the 2nd and 3rd spots in the Atlantic division. It is possible for one of Tampa/Boston to fall out into a wild card spot and one of Florida/Montreal/Detroit to move up. If the latter three can’t then it’s just a battle for home ice advantage.

21. Let’s turn our attention towards the bottom 12 of the league that are certainly not making it into the playoffs.

22. After just missing playoffs last season the Ottawa Senators looked like prime candidates to make the jump into the playoffs this season.

23. Would have been hard to deny they had a good chance especially with the additions of Coyle, JVR and Andrew Ladd. Now though it’s back to the drawing board and wondering what went wrong this time.

24. Another disappointment would have to be the Islanders this season. Only major injury was to Kyle Okposo. They’ll be hoping Jamie Benn is what’s needed for next season.

25. Teams that did miss playoffs but is probably feeling good about themselves is the Nashville Predators and the Toronto Maple Leafs.

26. Nashville because Matt Duchene is looking like the no. 1 center they’ve always needed plus Pekka Rinne being in God mode for the last half of the season. For Toronto its their youth movement providing hope in fans.

27. An example of a team feeling good and bad about themselves? Probably the Philadelphia Flyers. John Gibson is looking great but the rest of the team is lagging behind this season.

28. And a team that really just doesn’t care, and definitely won’t until the draft, are the San Jose Sharks. Eight first round draft picks (no idea about possible conditions). Three will be lottery draft picks with the potential for 4 lottery picks if the Coyotes fail to make playoffs.

29. Once playoffs start, expect some out of the bottom 14 teams to start making deals. No one will want to wait until the draft to make deals, especially if the price is good.

30. Last but not least, these playoffs are shaping up to be better than last years. Definitely a higher chance this year that the Wild Card teams win their series compared to last season.

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aussiehabit
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Re: A Full C7 Magazine of Thoughts

Post by aussiehabit » Fri May 20, 2016 12:36 pm

The East is a battlefield. Habs are proving the doubters wrong!!!

Nice read. Thx

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