2012 NHL Playoffs: Ranking the Teams Based on Actual Wins

Adam Rickert@adam_rickertAnalyst IIApril 8, 2012

Many people continue to complain about the points system in the NHL. While shootouts are extremely exciting, they do not truly indicate who the better team is, yet the winner gets two points—equal to a regulation or overtime win.

Also, many people do not like the "loser point" for an overtime loss, and I could not agree more. In the playoffs, losing in overtime does not give you half of a win like it does in the regular season.

Some teams in this year's playoffs have depended on the "loser point" or shootout wins to get this far; two things that will not help them come playoff time.

I came up with a formula to rank these teams and how to possibly calculate playoff success based on actual wins and not shootout wins and extra points for losses. Here is how it works:

Regulation/overtime win: 1 point

In the playoffs, if you win in regulation or the first five minutes of overtime, like the regular season, you win the game.

Shootout win or loss: 0 points

Overtime is continuous in the playoffs; if nobody scores after five minutes of overtime, a shootout is not held to crown a winner. The next goal wins; therefore, getting to a shootout does nothing to determine who would win a playoff game.


Regulation/overtime loss: -1 point

Like the regulation/overtime win. Losing in regulation or the beginning in overtime obviously counts as a loss.

I'm not suggesting this as a points system, because I have a different idea about that, and I'm not saying this is going to judge how teams will succeed; this is just for fun to see if there is a correlation.

Anyways, this is how these teams would stack up:


1. St. Louis Blues: 49-22-11 (4-10 in shootouts)

45 ROW - 23 ROL = 22 points

2. New York Rangers: 51-24-7 (4-5 in shootouts)

47 ROW - 26 ROL = 21 points

3. Vancouver Canucks: 51-22-9 (8-7 in shootouts)

43 ROW - 24 ROL = 19 points

4. Philadelphia Flyers: 47-26-9 (4-7 in shootouts)

43 ROW - 28 ROL = 15 points

T-5. Pittsburgh Penguins: 51-25-6 (9-3 in shootouts)

42 ROW - 28 ROL = 14 points

T-5. Nashville Predators: 48-26-8 (5-5 in shootouts)

43 ROW - 29 ROL = 14 points

7. Boston Bruins: 49-29-4 (9-3 in shootouts)

40 ROW - 30 ROL = 10 points

T-8. Detroit Red Wings: 48-28-6 (9-3 in shootouts)

39 ROW - 31 ROL = 8 points

T-8. Chicago Blackhawks: 45-26-11 (7-7 in shootouts)

38 ROW - 30 ROL = 8 points

T-10. New Jersey Devils: 48-28-6 (12-4 in shootouts)

36 ROW - 30 ROL = 6 points

T-10. Phoenix Coyotes: 42-27-13 (6-10 in shootouts)

36 ROW - 30 ROL = 6 points

12. Washington Capitals: 42-32-8 (4-4 in shootouts)

38 ROW - 36 ROL = 2 points

13. Los Angeles Kings: 40-27-15 (6-9 in shootouts)

34 ROW - 33 ROL = 1 point

14. San Jose Sharks: 43-29-10 (9-5 in shootouts)

34 ROW - 34 ROL = 0 points

T-15. Florida Panthers: 38-26-18 (6-11 in shootouts)

32 ROW - 34 ROL = -2 points

T-15. Ottawa Senators: 41-31-10 (6-4 in shootouts)

35 ROW - 37 ROL = -2 points


So, according to this, the Stanley Cup Final should be the Blues over Rangers and the Final Four should be St. Louis vs. Vancouver and New York vs. Philadelphia. Interesting.

Obviously there are other factors to take into account: Phoenix, New Jersey, and San Jose are red-hot going into the playoffs while the Blues and Red Wings are going in cold.

Once again, this is just for fun to see how these statistics influence postseason play. These are in no way my predictions or even my opinion about the NHL points system.


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