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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

From "What's Going On" to "When Can We Clinch"? Isles close in on playoff berth

My Twitter questions changed rapidly last evening -- as the Isles rallied from a 1-0 second intermission deficit for a 2-1 shootout win and also got help from both New Jersey and Montreal.

As a result, the magic number has fallen from 11 to 7, which means that the Isles could clinch a playoff spot as early as Saturday.

Here's how:

Magic number is 7 vs. Detroit.
Isles host Columbus Thursday and Pittsburgh Saturday.  Detroit hosts Minnesota Friday and visits Toronto Saturday.
==> Isles would clinch spot Saturday if they win twice and Detroit goes 0-1-1 OR if they go 1-0-1 and Detroit loses twice in regulation.

Magic number is 8 vs. Boston
Isles host Columbus Thursday and Pittsburgh Saturday. Boston is in St. Louis on Friday and Chicago on Sunday.
==> Isles would clinch spot Sunday if they win twice and Boston loses twice in regulation

Since the Bruins and Red Wings have a game left with each other (next Thursday), there are some three-way combination that would also see the Isles clinch on Sunday:

Isles win twice, Boston goes 0-1-1 and Detroit goes 1-1-0 (or 0-0-2).  That would give the Isles 95 points and give Detroit and Boston a possible maximum of 95 as well.  However, only one could reach it because of their game against each other.

Isles go 1-0-1, Boston goes 0-2-0 and Detroit goes 0-1-1.  That would give the Isles 94 points and give Detroit and Boston a possible maximum of 94 as well.  However, only one could reach it because of their game against each other.

Detroit also has a game left with Philadelphia (next Wednesday) -- That leads to this confusing combination that could lead the Isles to clinch on Sunday as well.  Isles win twice, Detroit goes 1-1-0 (or 0-0-2) and the Flyers lose in regulation tonight to Washington, Saturday to Ottawa and Sunday in Pittsburgh. That would give the Isles 95 points and give Detroit and Philadelphia a possible maximum of 95 as well.  However, only one could reach it because of their game against each other.  

If that last one happens, just remember you read it here first!

 
Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick, statistician on Islander home telecasts since January 21, 1982. Visit my blog: NYISkinny.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick

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