Sunday, February 05, 2006

Playoff Hunt #2

This report for the Western Conference covers the period from Feb 6 to the Olympic Break.

Period of Analysis 06-Feb-06 to Olympic Break

SeedTeamCurrent PointsLast 10 PointsPredicted Points
Detroit continues to roll with only one regulation loss in their last ten games. They’ve picked up all six points that were available this past week. Mid week they face a pair of games with Nashville and a match up with Colorado next Sunday. As the games with Nashville are a home and home affair let’s suggest home ice prevails. I’ll estimate 4 points for Detroit this week.

Dallas picked up 5 points this week with wins against San Jose and Nashville. St Louis surprised the Stars however it was an OT loss good for one point. Dallas has a busy week ahead with Nashville at home followed by Phoenix, San Jose and Los Angeles on the road. I’ll predict 7 points for the week with one point dropped on the road out west.

Vancouver did carry over their win in Colorado to a win in Phoenix. The battles in Alberta saw a win and a loss. Coming up are four home games with CBJ, St Louis, Anaheim and Minny. There is no reason why the Sedins and support cast shouldn’t sweep into the break with all 8 points to remain in first two points up on Calgary.

Nashville’s week went exactly as predicted. Dallas won, Colorado lost and Chicago got blown out. Next week is a little harder. Dallas, home n home with Detroit and then Columbus who always plays them hard. Let’s suggest the Predator’s will pick up 4 points in these 4 games. Losses in Dallas/Detroit and Wins at home against Detroit and the CBJ.

Calgary didn’t win all week but did pick up two points for two Shoot Out losses to St Louis and CBJ. This week SHOULD be an easier ride for Iggy and crew as they travel to the Shark Tank then host Anaheim and again St Louis. With three losses in a row, I’d think the Flames are going to be hungry. Give them 6 points this week.

6Los Angeles65770
I figured LA for two points last week. No idea that the two would be as a result of Shoot Out losses. The Kings have a busy week ahead with four games. They continue to slump with a 2-5-3 record in their last ten. They get Minny, CBJ, Chicago and Dallas in the last game of a three city tour of the South West. I’ll suggest LA could pick up 5 points this week. The wins will come at the expense of Chicago and Minny. They will OTL to one of CBJ or Dallas.

The Oil and CBJ exchanged third period goals before going on to lose in the Shoot Out. A tired Vancouver gave them an easy additional 2 points for a total of 3 for the week. This was good enough to draw them even in points with LA. This week they host Anaheim then directly head out to Denver to face the Av’s. Some days off on the return home gives them time to prepare for Minny then St Louis. I think they'll drop the game to the Avalanche. Otherwise give Edmonton 6 points this week. By the Olympic break Edmonton should be able to swap seeds with LA.

Colorado beat Minny and got a bonus point for an OTL in Nashville. Edmonton comes to town on Tuesday then the Av’s go out on the road for games in Minny, Columbus and Detroit. I think they’ll pick up six points this week with the only loss being on the road in Detroit. Unfortunately this will leave them still one back of Edmonton and tied with LA for the final payoff spot.

Outside looking in.

The remainder of the west with a chance of making it to the Stanley Cup Tournament are Anaheim, Minnesota and Phoenix. Anaheim is still the best of the bunch. Anaheim remains four points in back of Colorado. I do not see any of this trio braking into the top eight seeds over the coming week.

Key Games for the Canucks.

On paper there is not much for the Nucks to worry about in the coming week. And perhaps that is just what they should be worried about. St Louis has embarrassed them twice this year. They are 3-2 against the Wild, 2-1 against the Ducklings and 1-1 against the CBJ’s. If the team plays like it did in Colorado on the 28th and Calgary on the 3rd there will be no problem.

Predicted Dance Partners.

If the playoff were to start on February 12th my predictions for match ups are as follows:

Detroit – Colorado
Dallas – Los Angles
Vancouver – Edmonton
Nashville – Calgary


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