- 3 Washington (SE Leader) 39 games 20-17-2 42 points (17 ROW) Next game: Tuesday at Montreal
- 5. Toronto 39 games 22-13-4 48 points (22 ROW) Next game: Wednesday at NY Rangers
- 6 Ottawa 38 games 19-13-6 44 points (15 ROW) Next game: Tuesday at Tampa Bay
- 7 NY Rangers 39 games 19-16-4 42 points (16 ROW) Next game: Wednesday vs Toronto
- 8 NY Islanders 39 games 19-16-4 42 points (16 ROW) Next game: Tuesday vs. Philadelphia
- 9 New Jersey 39 games 15-14-10 40 points (13 ROW) Next game: Wednesday vs. Boston
- 10 Winnipeg 40 games 19-19-2 40 points (18 ROW) Next game: Tuesday vs. Buffalo
Why are the Rangers 7th and the Islanders 8th?
The teams both have 42 points in 39 games, and both have 16 ROW. Where do we go from here? The next tie-breaker is head-to-head, but the rules state that you need to discount the first game in a city if one team has more home games. Thus the Isles' shootout win at MSG and the Rangers' OT win at the Coliseum are the ones that count. That tiebreaker is thus even too. The final tiebreaker is goal differential for the entire season-- the Rangers are +2 and the Isles are -6. This makes the Rangers 7th and the Isles 8th.
What does this mean for Saturday?
Since the Rangers won the February 7th meeting at MSG in regulation, they have five points in the season series to the Isles' three. The Isles need a REGULATION win on Saturday to split this tie-breaker. Obviously the Isles could finish with more regulation/overtime wins to make this tiebreaker moot, but an Isles regulation win could make the fourth tie-breaker necessary (which could in theory come down to the final score of the Ranger-Devil game on April 27th).