Looking At Adjusted Standings - The 3 and 5 Point Systems

Based on yesterday's article and the comments, I took the time to chart the teams this year and see whether moving to a three-point or five-point system would actually make much of a difference in the standings. Not surprisingly, there are some differences and they are most notable in the Western Conference where the teams are tightly packed.

Quick recap: The three point system would award teams 3 points for a win in regulation, 2 points for a win in overtime or the shooutout and 1 point for a loss after regulation. The five point system would award teams 5 points for a win in regulation, 4 points for a win in overtime, 3 points for a win in a shootout, 2 points for a loss in the shootout and 1 point for a loss in overtime.

Not sure if there is such difference that teams will be clamoring for the change, but I think that the emphasis that a new system would place on teams winning in regulation is motivation enough for the league to seriously consider the change. After the jump, see the charts I created and I will provide my thoughts on my findings.

Eastern Conference

Current Points

3-Point System

5-Point System

 

Regulation Wins

OT Wins

SO Wins

SO Losses

OT Losses

Regulation Losses

Philadelphia

75

107

179

 

32

2

1

3

2

13

Tampa Bay

71

92

155

 

21

7

5

2

3

17

Boston

67

95

159

 

28

1

1

5

2

16

Pittsburgh

72

100

166

 

28

2

4

2

2

17

Washington

68

91

152

 

23

4

2

5

5

16

Montreal

65

89

148

 

24

4

2

1

4

19

NY Rangers

62

83

138

 

21

3

5

2

2

23

Carolina

59

77

129

 

18

4

4

4

3

21

Atlanta

58

73

124

 

15

6

3

6

4

22

Buffalo

55

71

117

 

16

5

4

0

5

22

Florida

52

68

116

 

16

5

2

4

2

24

Toronto

51

69

114

 

18

1

4

3

2

26

New Jersey

44

59

98

 

15

3

2

1

3

30

Ottawa

42

59

96

 

17

0

0

3

5

29

NY Islanders

41

52

89

 

11

5

1

4

3

29

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Western Conference

Current

3-point

5-point

 

Regulation Wins

OT Wins

SO Wins

SO Losses

OT Losses

Regulation Losses

Vancouver

79

110

183

 

31

2

2

5

4

10

Detroit

70

93

157

 

23

7

2

2

4

15

Dallas

65

87

147

 

22

4

4

4

1

18

San Jose

64

88

145

 

24

2

3

2

4

19

Nashville

63

85

138

 

22

0

6

3

4

19

Phoenix

63

88

143

 

25

0

2

3

6

19

Anaheim

62

84

140

 

22

3

4

2

2

21

Calgary

61

79

131

 

18

2

7

5

2

21

Los Angeles

60

82

135

 

22

1

6

1

1

22

Minnesota

59

81

138

 

22

4

1

4

1

20

Chicago

58

80

133

 

22

2

3

2

2

22

Columbus

57

75

125

 

18

4

4

2

3

22

St. Louis

56

75

124

 

19

2

3

4

4

20

Colorado

56

73

120

 

17

5

3

0

6

22

Edmonton

40

53

91

 

13

2

1

7

1

29

 

What immediately jumps out at me, and that I was unaware of previously, is that the Coyotes actually have the second most regulation wins in the Western Conference this season. We have noted in the past how the shootout and overtime can be a bit of a crapshoot, and with a 2-9 record after regulation, the Coyotes are showing how that is hurting this year. In either the three or five point systems, the Coyotes would leapfrog Nashville (who has greatly benefited from its six shootout wins) and either move into a tie with San Jose for the Pacific Division lead or be nipping at the heels of both Dallas and San Jose with a victory tonight catapulting the Coyotes ahead of both teams.

I think Minnesota and Los Angeles show me the greatest advantage of the five point system. Both teams have 22 regulation wins, but Minnesota has two fewer regulation losses. In its ten games that have gone beyond regulation, the Wild has gone 4-1 in overtime and 1-4 in the shootout. Meanwhile, Los Angeles has gone 1-1 in overtime and a very good 6-1 in the shootout. With all points being as they are, Los Angeles is one point ahead of Minnesota with the Wild holding a game at hand. The three point system would keep this one point advantage for the Kings. Under the five point system, however, Minny is rewarded for its superior play in overtime and actually jumps Los Angeles (and Calgary who has most benefited from its 12 shootout games this year, clearly) and would be in a playoff position, tied with the Predators, who as we noted, also have six shootout wins.

Neither system is going to create big changes, of course. Clearly, Vancouver and Philadelphia are having the best seasons this year and the new systems will only emphasize how much better each team has been. Remarkably, the Canucks and Flyers have combined for only seven wins after regulation, as many as Detroit and Tampa Bay have won in overtime. All those extra period wins have made Tampa Bay seem just a bit better than Washington than they probably are as the Lightning's 21 regulation wins are some of the least of any team in a playoff position.

It's really just a lot of food for thought because I don't think any changes are imminent, but it would be nice for the league to at least get all games worth the same number of points, regardless of the system used. I think the races will still be be tight and teams will still be battling to the end for playoff spots - but it will be those teams most likely to be strong in the playoffs where the shootouts and 4-on-4 overtime aren't in play.

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