by Mike Chen on 11/25/08 at 02:00 PM ET
There’s been some debate, between a few of my posts and a few other things floating around the blogosphere, about the best way to assign points for wins, shootouts, overtime losses, etc. Well, regardless of what we’d like to see, we’re stuck with this current system. With that in mind, let’s break down the standings with a few different looks. First, here are the entire league standings using the traditional point system.
And here’s a different way to look at the standings. Since teams play a different amount of games, a snapshot of the league’s point distribution isn’t the most accurate way to judge how well teams are doing in relation to each other. This next table weighs things in points per game—that is, the total number of points earned in the standings divided by the number of games played (PPG).
What’s the difference? The Rangers drop a few places and the Blues are actually doing a little better than the standings would make them out to be. The bulk of the league, however, doesn’t shift more than a spot or two.
This next chart is interesting. I think it probably shows more about trends rather than standings. This table is sorted by goal differential (Diff).
Some surprising teams here have pretty good goal differential: LA, Ottawa, and St. Louis are all significantly better than their record would have you believe. Tampa Bay is much worse (scoring goals would help) while Chicago approaches the upper echelon.
And one thing to note: the Sharks lead in all three variations of the standings. Their +29 goal differential is far and away the leader, with almost four goals-for and a lower-middle -of-the-pack goals against. On the bottom? The Dallas Stars pull it up in every chart. Bet Brett Hull wishes he was still the Ambassador of Fun, huh?
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