by PuckStopsHere on 03/12/12 at 08:46 PM ET
The top four teams by points in the East Conference are the New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Philadelphia Flyers and New Jersey Devils. All of those teams play in the Atlantic Division. The lone Atlantic Division team doing poorly is the New York Islanders. They are second last in the conference. This makes the Atlantic Division more dominant in their conference than the Central Division is in the West Conference as four of the top five teams in the west are Central teams. The Atlantic Division has ten more points so far this year than the Central. This is largely been because Columbus is doing so poorly.
The Atlantic Conference’s dominance in their conference is partly because of weakness of the other division. The Southeast Division is historically weak. No team in that division has more goals scored than goals allowed.
The Northeast Division has the Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins and a bunch of weaker teams. Even Boston has not been a hot team recently. They have only won 12 of their last 28 games and have fallen back into the pack. Perhaps this is a hangover from their cup win. Ottawa is the only on team in the division with more goals for than against.
The Atlantic Division has the best eastern goalie so far this season in Henrik Lundqvist. It has two of the top three scorers in the league in Evgeni Malkin and Claude Giroux. It has a lot of talent.
Never before has a division had the top four finishers in a conference. The Atlantic Division currently does in the East Conference. If Boston gets hot in the rest of the season that may not be a final result. The Central Division is also very strong this season, but it doesn’t have the overall results of the Atlantic Division. There are currently two strong divisions and four weaker ones in the league.
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