Tom Brokaw is calling it: The Ducks are done (Wednesday's Results)

The Good: Ducks lose.

The Bad: Kings half-lose, Avs win, Wings win, Canucks win.

Eh: Blues lose.

So?

  • The Ducks are toast. Cross them off.
  • The Blues take the Ducks' place staring into the abyss. Must finish with nine straight wins in order to have a 1:3 chance of squeaking in. Next up: the Kings.
  • Dallas is right behind the Blues. They have to go 8-0-1, to have even the slightest chance. Next up: SJS, LAK.
  • The Kings are at 90 points with 10 games left. When has that happened in franchise history? (Answer: once. 1975. They had one more point, 91 points with ten games left. That's the team with the franchise mark for points in a season: 105.)
  • Nashville, still even with Detroit, has Phoenix and Detroit next up, so the next few days should be clarifying. They also play the Yotes and Wings once more after that, and the Kings once. So if they're still alive after that, they deserve to be there.
  • The home stretch for Colorado is brutal: PHX, SJS, ANA, CGY, SJS, VAN, EDM, CHI, LAK. They need three of those games. 
  • The Flames face NYI, BOS, WAS, PHX, COL, CHI, SJS, MIN, VAN. They need at least six of those, and that's if you think Detroit is only going to win four of its remaining nine games. Which I would have said was possible a couple of weeks ago, but now? And, also, look:
  • Detroit, in contrast, has: MIN, NAS, EDM, CBJ, NAS, PHI, CBJ, CBJ, CHI. Yes, three against the Jackets. 
  • Calgary and Detroit are even in wins to this point. Nashville has four more than either of them. Wins is the first tie-breaker.
  • Elimination is defined here as can't get to 95***[see below].

Here are the standings in points-blown* (if you haven't seen my version of standings before, scroll to the bottom for the explanation):

  1. Chicago Blackhawks 45 (1) +9
  2. San Jose Sharks 48 (2) +6
  3. Vancouver Canucks 54 (3) 0 [tied with Kings in pts blown*, but 1st in div.]
  4. Phoenix Coyotes 49 (4) +5
  5. Los Angeles Kings 54 (5) --
  6. Colorado Avalanche 57 (6) -3
  7. Nashville Predators 59 (7) -5
  8. Detroit Red Wings 59 (8) -5
  9. Calgary Flames 63 (9) -9
  10. Dallas Stars 68 (10) -14
  11. St. Louis Blues 69 (11) -15
  12. Anaheim Ducks
  13. Minnesota Wild
  14. Columbus Blue Jackets
  15. Edmonton Oilers
And here's the record each team needs from here on, to get to the assumed magical (official) point total of 95***:
  1. Chicago Blackhawks**
  2. San Jose Sharks**
  3. Phoenix Coyotes**
  4. Vancouver Canucks 0-7-1
  5. Los Angeles Kings 2-7-1
  6. Colorado Avalanche 3-6-0
  7. Nashville Predators 3-5-0
  8. Detroit Red Wings 4-5-0
  9. Calgary Flames 6-3-0
  10. Dallas Stars 8-0-1
  11. St. Louis Blues 9-0-0
  12. Anaheim Ducks
  13. Minnesota Wild
  14. Columbus Blue Jackets
  15. Edmonton Oilers
*standings in points-blown explained: "points blown" means, literally, how many points your team could have had, but squandered; a loss is 2 blown points, a "half-loss" (OTL/SOL) is one blown point, a win is zero blown points. The resulting standings are golf-like, the fewer blown points the better. Two points "awarded" for every loss, one point for every OTL/SOL. Again, lowest point total is best. Number in parentheses is the official standings (via ESPN). Last number (+/-) is number of points (in my system) ahead or behind Los Angeles. Because it's a Kings-centric universe.
**already hit 95 points. They can lose the rest of their games now, and should, if they want to avoid Detroit in the first round.

***95 points is the likely playoff threshold. It might end up being 94 or 96. 93 is unlikely to be enough for the teams currently on the outside looking in. For example, if Minnesota finishes with nine straight wins, they will land at 93 and have only about a 16% chance of making it -- yes, better than nothing, but not really, if you factor in the odds of them going 9-0-0, which are currently at 0.056% (or 56:100,000); if Dallas makes it to 93, they have only a 5% shot; Anaheim would have a 10% shot. At 94 points, the odds go up for those teams to around 20-33%, still not likely. At 95 points, it starts to be very likely that you'll make it. For the Kings (which is my focus), their odds are around 93% at that point total. And the odds of the Kings getting to that total are approximately 99.3%

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