Points System: Revealing Results
With Files from Gil Brown
The current point system is most equitable for playoff races in January and individual franchise marketing, beginning as early as midseason.
Part of the logic behind Detroit Red Wing’s GM Ken Holland’s proposal, shot down in GM meetings in Naples, Florida in March, to change the season ending tie-breaking measures from Wins, to Regulation Wins is incentive for teams to get the job done in 60-minutes.
It’s about motivation, from puck drop in October through to April. But the current point system has greater connotations for marketing games, ticket sales and shaping the playoff race, the biggest issues for owners.
The NHL will not be revisiting the 3-point system any time soon, according to Pierre LeBrun of espn.com, and with reason. Various point systems donâ€™t alter the standings enough to merit change. A three-point system or pre-1999 system without the automatic point awarded to clubs tied at the end of regulation doesnâ€™t provide incentive for the league to implement another point system.
Overtime was introduced in 1983-84, to motivate teams to go for the win.
The game needed a jolt, getting it in 1999-2000 by implementing four-on-four overtime with teams having already banked a point for the regulation tie, as enticement to teams to go for the win in overtime.
Forever known as the â€˜loser pointâ€™ the logic was to remove the fear of losing a point for tying clubs, instead going for the win, open up and generate offense. This change reflected the â€˜dead puck eraâ€™ with trapping teams and 1-0 scores. Clubs sat back and played for the tie in an era of defensive dominance.
In the dead puck era, that may have worked. Sitting on a lead in the post-lockout, revamped NHL, is death. Two and three goal leads can evaporate in a flash.
Motivation has changed almost 10 years and one lockout later. Teams struggle to hold on to three-goal leads in the third period. The dead puck era is gone, with a new era of increased scoring shifting the purpose of the overtime point, and further solidifying the shootout as an NHL mainstay.
Point systems arenâ€™t just a final tally to distinguish playoff seeds and golfers. Itâ€™s clear with Hollandâ€™s proposal that the NHL is looking at the psychological component for temptation to play for regulation wins.
Motivation is key, not changes to the point system.
The â€˜loser pointâ€™ doesnâ€™t motivate. Teams will still play for the extra point. Give teams options and they will use every able loophole for their own benefit.
Itâ€™s similar to the relationship between developers and hackers; developers will find ways to make systems safer, but hackers will eventually find a way to break through.
Just like Brian Burke did, bending the rules to â€˜acquireâ€™ a 4th round pick from the Bolts at the trade deadline.
The Standings Program
Iâ€™ve already introduced the program here. Was the playoff race a byproduct of the NHLâ€™s current system, beginning in earnest from January?
Giving it credence, the program was rigged to calculate the standings with the old point system (pre-loser point â€“ tie after overtime, both teams with 1 pt) and with a three-point system (3 pts for a Regulation Win, 2 pts for an overtime/shootout Win, and 1 point for an OT/SO loss).
Tested with stats from various seasons, 2007-08 was used as the prime statistical example; specific dates illustrated day-to-day changes using every point system. Most results mirror the current point system.
Dates (2007-08 season):
Jan 10 - about the 41-game mark for the entire league
Jan 24 – about a month before the trade deadline
Feb 26 – the trade deadline
Mar 30 – approximately 2 weeks in the season and then the final results.
|Ottawa Senators||42||60||Detroit Red Wings||45||70|
|New Jersey Devils||43||53||Dallas Stars||46||54|
|Carolina Hurricanes||46||48||Vancouver Canucks||43||52|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||43||52||San Jose Sharks||42||54|
|Montreal Canadiens||43||52||Anaheim Ducks||46||52|
|Philadelphia Flyers||41||48||Calgary Flames||44||51|
|Boston Bruins||43||46||Minnesota Wild||43||50|
|New York Rangers||44||45||St. Louis Blues||41||49|
|New York Islanders||42||45||Colorado Avalanche||43||47|
|Atlanta Thrashers||45||44||Phoenix Coyotes||42||45|
|Florida Panthers||44||43||Nashville Predators||42||44|
|Buffalo Sabres||42||43||Edmonton Oilers||45||44|
|Washington Capitals||43||41||Columbus Blue Jackets||43||44|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||44||40||Chicago Blackhawks||43||42|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||44||37||Los Angeles Kings||45||34|
|Ottawa Senators||42||56||Detroit Red Wings||45||66|
|New Jersey Devils||43||48||San Jose Sharks||42||52|
|Carolina Hurricanes||46||46||Vancouver Canucks||43||48|
|Philadelphia Flyers||41||47||St. Louis Blues||41||48|
|Montreal Canadiens||43||47||Calgary Flames||44||48|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||43||45||Minnesota Wild||43||47|
|Boston Bruins||43||44||Dallas Stars||46||47|
|New York Islanders||42||40||Anaheim Ducks||46||46|
|Buffalo Sabres||42||39||Colorado Avalanche||43||42|
|New York Rangers||44||39||Columbus Blue Jackets||43||42|
|Washington Capitals||43||38||Nashville Predators||42||41|
|Florida Panthers||44||38||Phoenix Coyotes||42||40|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||44||37||Chicago Blackhawks||43||39|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||44||35||Edmonton Oilers||45||32|
|Atlanta Thrashers||45||35||Los Angeles Kings||45||30|
|Ottawa Senators||42||84||Detroit Red Wings||45||99|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||43||70||San Jose Sharks||42||76|
|Carolina Hurricanes||46||68||Vancouver Canucks||43||72|
|New Jersey Devils||43||73||Dallas Stars||46||72|
|Philadelphia Flyers||41||69||Minnesota Wild||43||71|
|Montreal Canadiens||43||69||St. Louis Blues||41||70|
|Boston Bruins||43||65||Calgary Flames||44||70|
|New York Islanders||42||60||Anaheim Ducks||46||69|
|New York Rangers||44||59||Colorado Avalanche||43||64|
|Florida Panthers||44||58||Nashville Predators||42||62|
|Buffalo Sabres||42||58||Phoenix Coyotes||42||62|
|Washington Capitals||43||56||Columbus Blue Jackets||43||61|
|Atlanta Thrashers||45||56||Chicago Blackhawks||43||58|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||44||53||Edmonton Oilers||45||52|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||44||51||Los Angeles Kings||45||46|
NFL playoffs are in full swing, and the average NFL fan is immersed in postseason mentality. The NHL enters the dog days of the schedule, with teams playing out games and looking forward to the All-Star Break.
Current system — January 10 – about the midway point of the season – indicated that a playoff spot is within all clubs reach with 10 teams in the East fighting it out, and another 12 in the West.
The Oilers were five points out of a playoff spot halfway through the season. In the East, the Atlanta Thrashers are one point out of a playoff spot. One point. One singular point.
From this snapshot, it looks like the current system favors a playoff race at midseason, allowing individual franchises to market games with a playoff implications.
Taking ‘loser points’ out of consideration using the OLD system, the Thrashers and Oilers both drop to the bottom of the Conference standings. The Oilers sat second last in the conference, with a playoff spot slipping away in the the OLD (14 pts – seven games). Atlanta slips to dead last in the conference, but only five points out of a spot (three wins). The East follows 14 teams still in the hunt. The West, 10 teams within an eight-point gap.
In the 3-PT system, the Oilers scramble just to stay in the playoff hunt, 17 pts behind – five wins and overtime loss, while Atlanta clings to a four-point gap for the final playoff spot. Twelve teams are contention for five playoff spots in the East, and 11 in the West cling to six playoff spots.
|Ottawa Senators||50||66||Detroit Red Wings||51||78|
|New Jersey Devils||49||59||Dallas Stars||53||61|
|Carolina Hurricanes||52||52||Minnesota Wild||50||59|
|Montreal Canadiens||49||60||San Jose Sharks||49||61|
|Philadelphia Flyers||48||59||Anaheim Ducks||53||60|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||49||58||Calgary Flames||50||58|
|Boston Bruins||49||55||Vancouver Canucks||50||57|
|New York Rangers||51||54||Colorado Avalanche||50||56|
|New York Islanders||50||54||Columbus Blue Jackets||51||56|
|Washington Capitals||50||51||Nashville Predators||50||55|
|Atlanta Thrashers||52||50||Phoenix Coyotes||49||54|
|Florida Panthers||51||49||Edmonton Oilers||52||51|
|Buffalo Sabres||48||48||St. Louis Blues||48||51|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||51||48||Chicago Blackhawks||50||50|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||50||45||Los Angeles Kings||51||42|
|Ottawa Senators||50||62||Detroit Red Wings||51||73|
|Philadelphia Flyers||48||58||San Jose Sharks||49||59|
|Carolina Hurricanes||52||49||Minnesota Wild||50||56|
|Montreal Canadiens||49||54||Calgary Flames||50||54|
|New Jersey Devils||49||53||Dallas Stars||53||54|
|Boston Bruins||49||51||Columbus Blue Jackets||51||53|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||49||51||Anaheim Ducks||53||53|
|New York Islanders||50||48||Nashville Predators||50||52|
|New York Rangers||51||47||Vancouver Canucks||50||51|
|Washington Capitals||50||46||St. Louis Blues||48||50|
|Florida Panthers||51||44||Colorado Avalanche||50||50|
|Buffalo Sabres||48||44||Phoenix Coyotes||49||48|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||51||44||Chicago Blackhawks||50||44|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||50||43||Edmonton Oilers||52||38|
|Atlanta Thrashers||52||40||Los Angeles Kings||51||37|
|Ottawa Senators||50||93||Detroit Red Wings||51||110|
|Philadelphia Flyers||48||85||San Jose Sharks||49||86|
|Carolina Hurricanes||52||73||Minnesota Wild||50||84|
|Montreal Canadiens||49||80||Dallas Stars||53||82|
|New Jersey Devils||49||78||Anaheim Ducks||53||80|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||49||78||Calgary Flames||50||79|
|Boston Bruins||49||76||Columbus Blue Jackets||51||78|
|New York Islanders||50||72||Nashville Predators||50||77|
|New York Rangers||51||71||Vancouver Canucks||50||77|
|Washington Capitals||50||70||Colorado Avalanche||50||76|
|Florida Panthers||51||66||Phoenix Coyotes||49||74|
|Buffalo Sabres||48||65||St. Louis Blues||48||72|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||51||64||Chicago Blackhawks||50||67|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||50||63||Edmonton Oilers||52||61|
|Atlanta Thrashers||52||63||Los Angeles Kings||51||57|
Forward to about a month before the trade deadline and the snapshot is just as close in the current system. Atlanta is four points shy of the final playoff spot, with 10 teams seperated by 12 points in the hunt in the East. Edmonton slips to five points out of a playoff spot, and 10 teams realistically compete for a shot at the postseason.
In the OLD and 3-PT systems, they’re featured at the bottom in both respective Conferences. The gap widens to eight for Atlanta (four wins) and 14 for Edmonton (seven wins) in the OLD system. There are 10 teams seperated by a 10-point gap for a playoff spot in the East, while the gap widens to 11 in the West, cut off right before the Oilers in 13th spot.
Atlanta is nine points (three wins) out of a playoff spot with a 3-PT system, and Edmonton has a whopping 16-point (5 wins and overtime loss) difference.
It seems like the playoffs are a pipe dream for some Conference bottom feeders in the OLD and 3-PT system. What is the incentive to ice a competitive team other than pride? Wouldn’t a better draft choice be the goal, rather than a playoff spot? Isn’t that what Toronto’s Tank Nation purports to be the best way to build a team?
Pure hockey enthusiasts would undoubtedly scream, yes!
NHL ownership, however, would not.
Draft choices don’t generate revenue; playoff gates, do. The incentive isn’t on the hockey operation, doing what’s best for the team. Rather, it’s an owner-initiated quandry to make a run for the postseason. For NHL ownership, both the OLD and 3-PT systems do not offer gate revenue. It doesn’t even promote regular season game attendance incentives. Marketing shifts focus to the upcoming season, not the postseason. These point systems take revenue in the form of playoffs implications marketing.
The Super Bowl is right around the corner and die-hard NFL fans are in the spirit. Using the current system, NHL franchises can capture that essence and run with it.
|New Jersey Devils||64||80||Detroit Red Wings||65||90|
|Ottawa Senators||64||78||Dallas Stars||67||85|
|Carolina Hurricanes||66||71||Calgary Flames||64||75|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||64||79||Anaheim Ducks||66||79|
|Montreal Canadiens||64||77||San Jose Sharks||62||74|
|Boston Bruins||62||72||Minnesota Wild||63||73|
|New York Rangers||64||72||Vancouver Canucks||62||72|
|Philadelphia Flyers||63||69||Nashville Predators||64||72|
|Buffalo Sabres||63||69||Colorado Avalanche||64||70|
|New York Islanders||64||67||Phoenix Coyotes||63||69|
|Washington Capitals||64||66||Columbus Blue Jackets||64||67|
|Florida Panthers||65||63||St. Louis Blues||63||66|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||64||63||Chicago Blackhawks||62||64|
|Atlanta Thrashers||64||62||Edmonton Oilers||64||63|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||62||57||Los Angeles Kings||64||56|
|Ottawa Senators||64||72||Detroit Red Wings||65||84|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||64||72||Dallas Stars||67||77|
|Carolina Hurricanes||66||66||Calgary Flames||64||69|
|New Jersey Devils||64||71||Anaheim Ducks||66||70|
|Montreal Canadiens||64||69||San Jose Sharks||62||69|
|Philadelphia Flyers||63||66||Nashville Predators||64||67|
|Boston Bruins||62||65||Minnesota Wild||63||66|
|New York Rangers||64||65||St. Louis Blues||63||64|
|Washington Capitals||63||65||Columbus Blue Jackets||64||63|
|Buffalo Sabres||64||63||Vancouver Canucks||62||63|
|New York Islanders||64||60||Phoenix Coyotes||63||62|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||64||57||Colorado Avalanche||64||62|
|Florida Panthers||65||56||Chicago Blackhawks||62||57|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||62||54||Los Angeles Kings||64||50|
|Atlanta Thrashers||64||48||Edmonton Oilers||64||49|
|Ottawa Senators||64||108||Detroit Red Wings||65||126|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||64||108||Dallas Stars||67||117|
|Carolina Hurricanes||66||99||Calgary Flames||64||102|
|New Jersey Devils||64||108||Anaheim Ducks||66||106|
|Montreal Canadiens||64||103||San Jose Sharks||62||102|
|Boston Bruins||62||99||Minnesota Wild||63||100|
|Philadelphia Flyers||63||97||Nashville Predators||64||99|
|New York Rangers||64||97||Vancouver Canucks||62||95|
|Washington Capitals||64||96||Phoenix Coyotes||63||94|
|Buffalo Sabres||63||93||Colorado Avalanche||64||94|
|New York Islanders||64||90||St. Louis Blues||63||92|
|Florida Panthers||65||84||Columbus Blue Jackets||64||92|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||64||84||Chicago Blackhawks||62||86|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||62||79||Edmonton Oilers||64||78|
|Atlanta Thrashers||64||77||Los Angeles Kings||64||76|
The NHL Trade Deadline 2008.
Realistically, both Atlanta and Edmonton are in a legitimate position to compete for a playoff spot in the current system by the Trade Deadline. Seven points separate the Thrashers from the Flyers in the East, while a nine point difference seperates the Oilers from the Predators sitting in eighth spot.
It’s a nice tight race, precisely what the NHL wants, healthy franchises all making runs for postseason appearances.
Marketing games for playoff implications hits full scale, with the media frenzy created by the deadline. The current point system comes under scrutiny for shootout and overtime losses and too many three-point games skewing the playoff picture down the stretch through March/April. Clubs jockey for position while the gap in both Conferences reduces (EAST: 9 teams vying for three playoff spots within 10 pts; WEST: 10 teams fight for four playoff spots with a 10-point gap.)
Both the Oilers and Atlanta are pretty much toast for a playoff spot in the OLD system, sitting at the bottom of the Conference standings. The playoff gap shortens with six teams competing for four spots in the East and a wild, wide open West, where anything can happen and 10 teams cling to hope for six playoff spots.
In the 3-pt system, six teams in the East compete for three playoff spots and eight compete in the West to occupy four playoff spots. Both the Oilers and Thrashers are out of the running.
About six weeks are left in the season. The playoff race has officially begun, and the three point games down the stretch will make it more difficult for teams to find tread and drive for the postseason.
|Pittsburgh Penguins||79||99||Detroit Red Wings||79||111|
|Montreal Canadiens||79||98||San Jose Sharks||79||106|
|Carolina Hurricanes||79||90||Minnesota Wild||80||95|
|New Jersey Devils||78||93||Anaheim Ducks||80||98|
|Ottawa Senators||79||92||Dallas Stars||79||93|
|New York Rangers||78||91||Colorado Avalanche||80||91|
|Philadelphia Flyers||79||91||Calgary Flames||79||90|
|Boston Bruins||79||91||Vancouver Canucks||79||88|
|Washington Capitals||79||88||Nashville Predators||79||87|
|Buffalo Sabres||79||86||Edmonton Oilers||80||86|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||79||82||Chicago Blackhawks||79||84|
|Florida Panthers||79||81||Phoenix Coyotes||79||80|
|New York Islanders||79||76||Columbus Blue Jackets||79||80|
|Atlanta Thrashers||79||72||St. Louis Blues||78||74|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||78||71||Los Angeles Kings||79||69|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||79||91||Detroit Red Wings||79||104|
|Montreal Canadiens||79||88||San Jose Sharks||79||97|
|Carolina Hurricanes||79||83||Minnesota Wild||80||86|
|Ottawa Senators||79||86||Anaheim Ducks||80||87|
|Philadelphia Flyers||79||85||Dallas Stars||79||85|
|Boston Bruins||79||82||Calgary Flames||79||84|
|New Jersey Devils||78||81||Colorado Avalanche||80||81|
|New York Rangers||78||80||Nashville Predators||79||80|
|Buffalo Sabres||79||78||Vancouver Canucks||79||78|
|Washington Capitals||79||77||Chicago Blackhawks||79||75|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||79||74||Columbus Blue Jackets||79||75|
|Florida Panthers||79||72||Phoenix Coyotes||79||71|
|New York Islanders||79||67||St. Louis Blues||78||70|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||78||67||Edmonton Oilers||80||67|
|Atlanta Thrashers||79||57||Los Angeles Kings||79||62|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||79||137||Detroit Red Wings||79||156|
|Montreal Canadiens||79||132||San Jose Sharks||79||145|
|Carolina Hurricanes||79||125||Minnesota Wild||80||129|
|Ottawa Senators||79||128||Anaheim Ducks||80||132|
|Philadelphia Flyers||79||125||Dallas Stars||79||128|
|New Jersey Devils||78||124||Calgary Flames||79||124|
|Boston Bruins||79||122||Colorado Avalanche||80||123|
|New York Rangers||78||120||Nashville Predators||79||119|
|Washington Capitals||79||117||Vancouver Canucks||79||117|
|Buffalo Sabres||79||115||Chicago Blackhawks||79||115|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||79||110||Columbus Blue Jackets||79||109|
|Florida Panthers||79||108||Phoenix Coyotes||79||108|
|New York Islanders||79||101||Edmonton Oilers||80||107|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||78||98||St. Louis Blues||78||101|
|Atlanta Thrashers||79||89||Los Angeles Kings||79||93|
Days before the season finale and the race is still close for the Oilers, only two points out of a playoff spot using the current system. Meanwhile, the Thrashers have been eliminated with less than a handful of games left. Washington and Carolina are in a dogfight for the top of the conference, the only way the Capitals can salvage a playoff spot, while the West has a Nashville/Vancouver battle going on with the Oilers.
Edmonton is officially eliminated in the following game. The race is over, with only a few games left in the season.
In the OLD and 3-PT systems, both the Thrashers and Oilers have long been eliminated, with the Predators and Canucks fighting it out. The Flames sit only two points behind the WIld for top of the division and a better seeding, that would eventually have them squaring off in the postseason under alternative systems.
The Capitals sit two points (1 win) away from a playoff spot in the OLD system and three points away (1 win) in a 3-PT system, but have no shot at the top of the division. This discrepancy is carried forward into the final season standings below.
|Montreal Canadiens||82||104||Detroit Red Wings||82||115|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||82||102||San Jose Sharks||82||108|
|Washington Capitals||82||94||Minnesota Wild||82||98|
|New Jersey Devils||82||99||Anaheim Ducks||82||102|
|New York Rangers||82||97||Dallas Stars||82||97|
|Philadelphia Flyers||82||95||Colorado Avalanche||82||95|
|Ottawa Senators||82||94||Calgary Flames||82||94|
|Boston Bruins||82||94||Nashville Predators||82||91|
|Carolina Hurricanes||82||92||Edmonton Oilers||82||88|
|Buffalo Sabres||82||90||Chicago Blackhawks||82||88|
|Florida Panthers||82||85||Vancouver Canucks||82||88|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||82||83||Phoenix Coyotes||82||83|
|New York Islanders||82||79||Columbus Blue Jackets||82||80|
|Atlanta Thrashers||82||76||St. Louis Blues||82||79|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||82||71||Los Angeles Kings||82||71|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||82||94||Detroit Red Wings||82||108|
|Montreal Canadiens||82||94||San Jose Sharks||82||99|
|Carolina Hurricanes||82||85||Minnesota Wild||82||89|
|Philadelphia Flyers||82||89||Anaheim Ducks||82||90|
|Ottawa Senators||82||88||Dallas Stars||82||89|
|Boston Bruins||82||85||Calgary Flames||82||88|
|New York Rangers||82||85||Colorado Avalanche||82||84|
|New Jersey Devils||82||84||Nashville Predators||82||83|
|Washington Capitals||82||83||Chicago Blackhawks||82||79|
|Buffalo Sabres||82||81||Vancouver Canucks||82||78|
|Florida Panthers||82||76||Columbus Blue Jackets||82||75|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||82||75||St. Louis Blues||82||75|
|New York Islanders||82||69||Phoenix Coyotes||82||74|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||82||67||Edmonton Oilers||82||69|
|Atlanta Thrashers||82||61||Los Angeles Kings||82||64|
|Pittsburgh Penguins||82||141||Detroit Red Wings||82||162|
|Montreal Canadiens||82||141||San Jose Sharks||82||148|
|Carolina Hurricanes||82||128||Minnesota Wild||82||133|
|Ottawa Senators||82||131||Anaheim Ducks||82||137|
|Philadelphia Flyers||82||131||Dallas Stars||82||134|
|New Jersey Devils||82||130||Calgary Flames||82||130|
|New York Rangers||82||127||Colorado Avalanche||82||128|
|Washington Capitals||82||126||Nashville Predators||82||124|
|Boston Bruins||82||126||Vancouver Canucks||82||117|
|Buffalo Sabres||82||120||Chicago Blackhawks||82||119|
|Florida Panthers||82||114||Columbus Blue Jackets||82||109|
|Toronto Maple Leafs||82||111||Phoenix Coyotes||82||112|
|New York Islanders||82||104||Edmonton Oilers||82||110|
|Tampa Bay Lightning||82||98||St. Louis Blues||82||108|
|Atlanta Thrashers||82||95||Los Angeles Kings||82||96|
Other segments of the standings are similar to the original results from last season, with other minor discrepancies.
Pittsburgh and Montreal invoke tie-breaking measures – what Ken Holland tried to change at GM meetings in Naples, Florida – in both systems. In the 3-PT system, both sit tied with 141 points, but Pittsburgh gets the nod with 39 regulation wins over Montrealâ€™s 37. In the old system, they tie with 94 (Pittsburgh still gets first place seeding by virtue of Wins.
Look at the Washington Capitals and the Carolina Hurricanes! Both make postseason appearances in the 3-PT system (with the Bruins on the outside looking in) and Washington misses the postseason using the old system, with 83 points (Bruins make it), two less than Carolinaâ€™s 85 for third place (divisional ranking leaders) and one point shy of the New Jersey Devils holding down the last playoff spot with 84 points.
Atlanta eventually finished in 14th place with 76 points in the current system, with Tampa Bay finishing in last with 71 points. The Bolts sat in last place in the final standings, yet the Thrashers in the 3-PT and Old system, finish in last place, behind the Lightning.
Math doesn’t explain the psychological component, which is really the issue. Would teams have been motivated to play out 2007-08 schedule in another fashion if the point system was different?
These snapshots provide results for games played using the current point system results as a base line. How would the standings have looked if played under the different point systems?
Do teams still play for a loser point in a 3pt system? Do they go for the all-out win? Is parity really that much of an issue considering the state of some teams? Will they try to win games in regulation, or play ‘not to lose’ in the third period?
This system offers owners close playoff races to promote the importance of games, especially from the All-Star Break onward. It seems to be the most generous and beneficial to the overall NHL, and will remain because of that .. donâ€™t expect the loser point or the shootout to go away any time soon.
Does the loser point give teams in playoff races enough incentive to stay in games where they are, say 3 goals behind entering the third period?
What Holland wanted to draw upon is what we will focus our energy on next.
What/where is the motivation?