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Friday, March 25, 2016

The Skinny on the Playoff Race: Isles Magic Number Remains 14 after loss in Tampa

The Isles' magic number is still 14 after their 7-4 loss to Tampa Bay.  The Isles magic number is against Boston; the Bruins remain one point behind the Isles--- but Boston has only 7 games to play to the Isles' 9.
All of the teams in the playoff race play on Saturday!
 
(Through games of March 25)
Metropolitan Division Standings (Top 5)
xy Washington 53-15-5=111 points / 73 games (49 ROW) Beat New Jersey 1-0 (OT)
NY Rangers    42-24-8=92 points / 74 games (39 ROW) Idle
Pittsburgh       40-25-8=88 points / 73 games (37 ROW) Idle
ISLES             39-25-9=87 points / 73 games (35 ROW) Lost to Tampa Bay 7-4
Philadelphia    36-24-13=85 points/ 73 games (34 ROW) Idle
 
Atlantic Teams in Wild Card Race
Boston          39-28-8=86 points/ 75 games (35 ROW) Idle
Detroit           37-26-11=85 points/ 74 games (35 ROW) Idle
x Clinched Playoff Spot
y Clinched Division Title and Conference Title
 
Remaining Schedule:
·           Washington: 3/26 vs St. Louis, 3/28 vs. Columbus, 3/30 @ Philadelphia, 4/1 @ Colorado, 4/2 @ Arizona, 4/5 vs. ISLES, 4/7 vs. Pittsburgh, 4/9 at St. Louis, 4/10 vs. Anaheim
·           NY Rangers: 3/26 @ Montreal, 3/27 vs. Pittsburgh, 3/31 @ Carolina, 4/2 vs. Buffalo, 4/4 @ Columbus, 4/5 vs. Tampa Bay, 4/7 vs. ISLES, 4/9 vs. Detroit     
·           Pittsburgh:  3/26 @ Detroit, 3/27 @ NY Rangers, 3/29 vs. Buffalo, 3/31 vs. Nashville,4/2 @ ISLES, 4/3 vs. Philadelphia, 4/5 @ Ottawa, 4/7 @ Washington, 4/9 @ Philadelphia
·           ISLES: 3/26 @ Carolina, 3/29 vs. Carolina, 3/31 vs. Columbus, 4/2 vs. Pittsburgh, 4/4 vs. Tampa Bay, 4/5 @ Washington, 4/7 @ NY Rangers, 4/9 vs. Buffalo, 4/10 vs. Philadelphia
·           Philadelphia: 3/26 @ Arizona, 3/28 vs. Winnipeg, 3/30 vs. Washington, 4/2 vs. Ottawa, 4/3 @ Pittsburgh, 4/6 at Detroit, 4/7 vs. Toronto, 4/9 vs Pittsburgh, 4/10 @ ISLES
·           Boston 3/26 @ Toronto, 3/29 @ New Jersey, 4/1 @ St. Louis, 4/3 @ Chicago, 4/5 vs. Carolina, 4/7 vs. Detroit, 4/9 vs Ottawa
 ·          Detroit: 3/26 vs. Pittsburgh, 3/28 vs. Buffalo, 3/29 @ Montreal, 4/1 vs. Minnesota, 4/2 @ Toronto, 4/6 vs. Philadelphia, 4/7 at Boston, 4/9 @ NY Rangers
 
Magic Number
The Isles' magic number is clinch a playoff berth is 14 over Boston, 15 over Detroit, 17 over Philadelphia, 20 against Pittsburgh and 22 against the Rangers.  Any combination of Islander points gained and Bruins points lost totaling 14 will guarantee that the Isles finish ahead of Boston.

The Isles need to finish ahead of eight teams to clinch a playoff berth.  Assuming the Isles finish ahead of teams currently in 10th to 16th place, the Isles also need to finish ahead of Philadelphia, Boston, Detroit, the Rangers OR Pittsburgh in order to clinch a playoff berth.

Magic numbers vs. other teams to clinch playoff berth: New Jersey (8), Carolina (8), Ottawa (3*), Montreal (2).
*Isles have clinched tie-breaker over Ottawa
Isles have clinched a better record than Toronto, Buffalo and Columbus
(Top 3 in each division, plus next two teams make the playoffs)
 
Saturday's Games
ISLES at Carolina
St. Louis at Washington
NY Rangers at Montreal
Pittsburgh at Detroit
Philadelphia at Arizona
Boston at Toronto
 
The Isles Magic Number to clinch a playoff spot could fall to:
·                  10, if the Isles win and the Bruins lose in regulation
·                  11, if the Isles win and the Bruins lose in overtime or a shootout and/or Detroit loses in regulation
·                  11, if the Isles lose in overtime or a shootout and the Bruins lose in regulation
(The magic number will fall to 12 or less if the Isles win)
 
Sunday's Game
Pittsburgh at NY Rangers
 
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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