Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Centralized West / Atlantic Supremacy

All five Central Division teams are currently in playoff position in the West, taking up more than half of the conference's spots. If it holds (which is unlikely because of the remaining schedule), the Central Division would be come the first in the league to get all five teams into the playoffs since the six division system started in 1998-99.

It would be pretty surprising for the Central Division to be the one to , as the Central has been pretty terrible in terms of depth in it's ten year history as a five-team division, averaging only 2.22 teams in the playoffs each season, second worst in the league.

You know what division is the best? The Flyers' own Atlantic Division, naturally. The Atlantic Division is tied with the Northeast Division with an average of 3.22 teams in the playoffs each year, significantly better than the 2.66 that would be the expected average. The Atlantic will have sole possession of the highest average once this season's numbers are added, as the division will almost certainly send four teams, and the Northeast will send a maximum of two. The Atlantic Division is also the only division never to have sent less than three teams, and with the Devils, Flyers, Penguinss and Rangers all in great shape to make the playoffs this season, the Atlantic is likely to become the first division to send four teams to the playoffs in three different years.

Of course, a large part of the success of the Atlantic and Northeast is due to the incomprehensible suck of the Southeast Division. The Southeast is the only division never to have sent three teams to the playoffs, an accomplishment which every other division has achieved at least twice (the Atlantic has done it nine times). The Southeast is also the only division to have ever sent only one team to the playoffs, and they've done it four times. Unbelievable that that craphole of a division has won two of the last four Stanley Cups.

Here's how the number of Stanley Cups by division breaks down:

Atlantic -- 2 (New Jersey 2000, New Jersey 2003)
Northeast -- 0
(None)
Southeast -- 2
(Tampa Bay 2004, Carolina 2008)
Central -- 2
(Detroit 2002, Detroit 2008)
Northwest -- 1
(Colorado 2001)
Pacific -- 2 (Dallas 1999, Anaheim 2007)

And the number of Stanley Cup finals appearances by division:

Atlantic -- 4 (New Jersey 2000, New Jersey 2001, New Jersey 2003, Pittsburgh 2008)
Northeast -- 2
(Buffalo 1999, Ottawa 2007)
Southeast -- 3
(Carolina 2002, Tampa Bay 2004, Carolina 2008)
Central -- 2
(Detroit 2002, Detroit 2008)
Northwest -- 3
(Colorado 2001, Calgary 2004, Edmonton 2006)
Pacific -- 2
(Dallas 1999, Dallas 2001, Anaheim 2003, Anaheim 2007)

For a team that has been getting the most teams into the playoffs, the Northeast has had some pretty crappy results in the playoffs. It's also worth noting that two of the Southeast's appearances in the finals came in years where there was only one Southeast team in the playoffs.

So what does all this mean? No idea.

1 comment:

breed16 said...

I think it shows that the regular season means pretty much jack squat.