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Vulgar Statistics: Power Rankings Week 12

01/14/12
by

Uh, stuff happened, and I put numbers to it and then put them in order.

To go with this week’s rankings of NHL teams, here is a ranking of predictions I’ve made about this season, from best to worst.  They involve gambling, standings predictions, and generally ragging on teams for no particular reason other than that I am a bitter individual who hates everything, especially puppies and ice cream.

Category 1 – BULLSEYE!

1). Take The OVER on Ottawa at 73.5 Points (On pace for 98 points; needs 20 points in 37 games (10-27-0) to hit the over). – Yeah if you bet this one, good job.  Ottawa could field an AHL team and probably scrape together half a point a game.

1). Take The OVER on St. Louis at 92.5 Points (On pace for 107 points; needs 37 points in 39 games (18-20-1) to hit the over). - This one ties for the top spot for a few reasons.  Yes, Ottawa’s run in the first half of the season is monumentally impressive, but you weren’t betting on them to be good, you were betting on them to not be awful.  Betting on the over for St. Louis means that you thought they could make the playoffs, a far less popular bet I think.

3). Shanahan isn’t going to correct everything overnight and it remains to be seen if he can find a strictness and consistency that most can agree with (though early indications are encouraging). – I will never stop giving myself credit for this.  While others were lauding Shanahan for his approach in the preseason, I pointed out that he merely looked good and we didn’t really know anything yet.  When the hits got harder and the games started to matter, he collapsed.

4). Philadelphia (Preseason pick – 4th; Current spot – 4th) – Bullseye.  Of course, the season isn’t over.

5). Toronto (Preseason pick – 7th; Current spot – 8th)  Did Toronto improve their team enough that a good season by Reimer will get them into the playoffs? (Going with the Leafs on this one.) – Welcome back to semi-relevance!

6). Vancouver (Preseason pick – 1st; Current spot – 1st)  Vancouver and San Jose are still the two best teams in the league and should run away with the Western Conference. – Still the best team in the West.

7). San Jose (Preseason pick – 2nd; Current spot – 3rd) – Still one of the best teams in the West.

8). St. Louis (Preseason pick – 3rd; Current spot – 4th)  What’s interesting to me is the Central division. Detroit is an older team with guys hitting ages where their careers start to decline. Chicago is two good lines and a bunch of spare parts. Then there’s St. Louis, one year removed from being a playoff team. As I’ve pointed out approximately 37 times, St. Louis started eleven of their first twelve games against playoff teams in 2010-2011 and went 9-1-2 in that stretch. Ultimately injuries doomed their season. I’m picking them as the surprise team of 2011-2012 and the third division winner. – Still loaded with talent and capable of running with the big dogs in their division.

9). Dallas (Preseason pick – 9th; Current spot – 10th) – Still in the middle of the pack.

10). Calgary (Preseason pick – 12th; Current spot – 11th) – Still a complete mess with a few bright spots carrying theteam.

11). Edmonton (Preseason pick – 15th; current spot – 13th) – Still inexplicably terrible in a bad division with probably the most exciting collection of young talent in the league.  If Devan Dubnyk turns out to be a decent starter and they continue to pick high at one point they’ll have a half dozen all stars all being paid 6 figures a year.  My goodness.  I hope they don’t stagger contracts and in one season they go from being under the cap to four times the cap.

Category 2 – Horseshoes and Hand Grenades OR There’s Still Time For Me to be Right

12). Take The UNDER on Phoenix at 87.5 Points (On pace for 86 points; needs 40 points in 37 games (20-17-0) to hit the under). – Hmm.

13). Take The UNDER on Detroit at 104.5 (On pace for 106 points; needs 47 points in 38 games (23-15-1) to hit the under). – Well…

14). Winnipeg (Preseason pick – 14th; Current spot – 10th) – Yawn.

15). Los Angeles (Preseason pick – 4th; Current spot – 7th) – Really thought they’d be better with all the talent they have.

16). Chicago (Preseason pick – 6th; Current spot – 2nd) – Meh.

17). Detroit (Preseason pick – 7th; Current spot – 3rd) – Start sucking already so I don’t have to watch you in the playoffs.

18). Phoenix (Preseason pick – 10th; Current spot – 12th) – They just lost too many solid players.

19). Montreal (Preseason pick – 9th; Current spot – 12th) – They just lost too many defensemen.

20). Carolina (Preseason pick – 10th; Current spot – 14th) – I thought Staal, Ward, and Skinner would be able to carry them a little more.

21). New York Islanders (Preseason pick – 12th; Current spot – 15th) – Snore.
Category 3 – I Was High On Meth When I Made These

22). Anaheim (Preseason pick – 5th; Current spot – 14th) – Something smells in Anaheim…everything.

23). Columbus (Preseason pick – 8th; Current spot – 15th) – I wanted to rank them higher too.

24). Nashville (Preseason pick – 11th; Current spot – 6th) – I thought that, like Phoenix, they lost too many good players.

25). Minnesota (Preseason pick – 13th; Current spot – 8th) – The way they’ve been playing lately, they might get there yet.

26). Colorado (Preseason pick – 14th; Current spot – 9th) – I guess if you have two halfway decent centers, it doesn’t matter that the rest of your team kind of sucks.

27). Washington (Preseason pick – 1st; Current spot – 8th) – I’m not sure they’re even as good as 8th.

28). Pittsburgh (Preseason pick – 2nd; Current spot – 9th) – I actually feel bad for the Pens with their injury troubles.

29). Buffalo (Preseason pick – 3rd; Current spot – 11th) – Ew.

30). Tampa Bay (Preseason pick – 5th; Current spot – 13th) – Well then.

31). Boston (Preseason pick – 6th; Current spot – 2nd) – Might as well crown the Bruins Stanley Cup, World Series, Super Bowl, and NBA champions right now.  Give them all of Tiger Woods’s Masters trophies too.  Virtual lock to make it though the season 20 points higher than any other team.

32). New York Rangers (Preseason pick – 7th; Current spot – 1st) If the Islanders weren’t almost completely worthless and the Devils actually had fans, the Rangers would probably be the third most compelling hockey team in the area.  Enjoy 5th to 10th place, a**holes. – So Brad Richards, eh?  Makes you wonder what he would have done for Thomas Vanek.

33). Florida (Preseason pick – 11th; Current spot – 3rd) – They might actually be the 11th best team in the east, it’s just that everyone else in their division is 12th-15th.

34). New Jersey (Preseason pick – 13th; Current spot – 6th) – I still think Martin Brodeur looks like he’s playing at 80% of the speed he used to have.  It’s a little sad.  Go Adam Henrique and reborn Patrick Elias though.

35). Ottawa (Preseason pick – 15th; Current spot – 5th) – Did you see that NHL?  The recipe for success is adding Alex Auld and Zenon Konopka in the offseason.  Also, trying every night.

36). Take The OVER on Buffalo at 98.5 Points (On pace for 82 points; needs 56 points in 38 games (28-10) to hit the over). – I don’t think it happens two years in a row.

37). Take The UNDER on Boston at 102.5 (On pace for 117 points; needs 45 points in 42 games (22-20-1) to hit the under). – Will challenge Montreal’s record 132 points.

38). Take The OVER on Carolina at 83.5 Points (On pace for 67 points; needs 47 points in 37 games (23-14-1) to hit the over). – Will not challenge Montreal’s record 132 points.

39). Take The OVER on Washington at 107.5 Points (On pace for 94 points; needs 60 points in 40 games (30-10-0) to hit the over). – Yeah…

40). Take The OVER on Columbus at 85.5 Points (On pace for 55! points; needs 57 points in 39 games (28-10-1) to hit the over). – I feel safe in saying this was the worst prediction I made this season.



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