Crunching Numbers

Jim Lang
March 09 2014 07:26AM

DamonMath


While the Leafs made that far more difficult and stressful then they needed it to be, their over-time win over the Flyers Saturday night accomplished three things. 

1 - I went to bed happy. (And slightly buzzed.)

2 - They beat a tough Flyers team. Leafs Postgame

3 - The Leafs will head out for the West Coast with a respectable 76 points. 

It doesn't matter if you are a fan, a player or a part of the Leafs extensive management staff; this is the time of year where your math skills come in handy.

My math skills are average at best but thanks to my handy calculator app I was able to crunch some numbers for the Leafs Nation on a Sunday morning.

Going into Monday's game in Anaheim the Leafs have 76 points in 65 games. That means the Leafs have 17 games left to play in the regular season. (Yeah, thanks tips.)

Here's how it breaks down.

The Leafs need to pick up 14 points to hit the 90 point mark. 14 points in 17 games seems very attainable. Even with the Leafs issues giving up short-handed goals, defensive zone coverage and Dion Phaneuf looking lost out there at times.

If the Leafs want to hit the magical 100 point plateau they would need to pick up 24 points the rest of the way. That would mean the Leafs would have to go 12-5 or some combination of wins, losses, over-time losses and shoot-outs. With their remaining schedule I just don't see the Leafs picking up 24 points the rest of the way.

A far more realistic expectation for the Maple Leafs this season would be 94 points. That would require them to pick up 18 points in their remaining 17 games. Yes, I realize that the Leafs schedule the rest of March is an absolute bitch. But think of it this way, David Clarkson hasn't scored since February 4th, so he's due. Isn't he? #nicecontract

To be honest, I will be happy if the Leafs are able to pick up five points on this killer five game road trip they are about to embark on. That would give them 81 points with 12 games left to play. Of those 12 games, seven of them are at the ACC.

That's why, even with all of the Leafs issues, anything less than a 94 point season will be a disappointment.

That is more than enough math for one day.

Now as it stands right now the Maple Leafs are on a collision course to face the Montreal Canadiens in the first round of the playoffs.

Through-out their long history the Leafs have faced the Habs 13 times in the post-season. However the two franchises haven't meet in the playoffs since the spring of 1979.

Here's hoping that PJ Stock's "Hockey Gods" allow a Leafs and Habs playoff series to happen once again. 

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A graduate of Humber College Jim started his radio career at CKBB in Barrie back in 1987. Between 2001 and 2010 Jim was a reporter and anchor at Rogers Sportsnet. During that time he was a traveling beat reporter for the Leafs and also covered the Raptors, Blue Jays, Argos, the Stanley Cup play-offs, five Super Bowls and the Grey Cup. Most recently Jim was the co-host of the morning show at Sportsnet 590 The Fan. Jim also writes a regular blog and is the author of an E-Book about the daily routines of NHL super-stars called the "Mental Game". Jim can currently be heard weekdays between 6AM to 10AM on 105.9FM The Region (Based in Markham and heard in York Region and the north end of the city). Jim still plays hockey (Mediocre at best)and was once knocked on his butt by Ron Ellis in a charity hockey game. (I totally deserved it)
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#1 Rij
March 09 2014, 08:25AM
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According to www.sportsclubstats.com/NHL/Eastern/Atlantic/Toronto.html, the Leafs have a 40 percent chance of making the playoffs with only 90 points but a 98 percent chance with 94 points. I think this is evidence of the dogfight that is about to ensue.

Also, if they do get to 94 points, the chance of playing Habs in first round is only 4 percent. Most likely opponents would be Pittsburgh and Boston at 36 percent each.

Lastly, current odds of making playoffs are 70 percent and winning the cup is 0.3 percent. Maybe hold off on planning the parade route for now...

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#2 jvuc
March 09 2014, 08:46AM
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You guys are all wrong. The leafs are not making the playoffs. Look at fenwick, look at corsi. The leafs are the same as the wild just a few years back that are seeing success based on percentages.

With Randy and Nonis at the helm, the the 18 wheeler is coming and advanced stats will once again be vindicated. The only way to salvage the season is to fire Carlyle and Nonis.

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#3 STAN
March 09 2014, 09:31AM
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The Leafs' play since the Olympics break has been erratic at best, Houdini-like almost each time out and head-scrtatching far too often.

Those four short-handed goals allowed were atrocious. Just one of those in the post-season could be fatal.

Phaneuf is obviously light-headed from that atrocious deal given to him by Nonis & Co. This is likely to be worse than the Clarkson deal in seasons to come (starting in 2015).

Troy Bodie is bigger, faster, tougher, younger and about one-tenth the cost of Davd Carkson prompting me to ask whether Nonis and his ace scouting department even sat down and asked themselves, "Uh, is there a David Clarkson-like player out there or in our system? Clarkson wants a tonne of money and our cap projections don't look good." ?

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#4 Jeremy Ian
March 09 2014, 11:48AM
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@STAN

Umm.....

Wasn't it Nonis et al that plucked Bodie out of utter obscurity? Last year, he was buried in the Norfolk Admirals.

Bodie's 10 months younger than Clarkson. In the decade since he was drafted, Bodie played 107 NHL games; he racked up a grand total of 7 goals and 5 assists.

There's a reason why so many people worried about signing Bodie in July.

Yes, he's been a valuable addition to the team -- but you have to watch out for that hindsight bias.

Just saying.

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#5 ?
March 09 2014, 03:54PM
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That Clarkson deal really is a boat anchor.

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#6 Derek
March 09 2014, 04:37PM
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@Jeremy Ian

"There's a reason why so many people worried about signing Bodie in July."

To add on to your point, he's also Tim Lieweke's step-son or something. His production and experience combined with the relation made it seem like pure nepotism (and it still may have been), but he's been decent, to be fair.

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#7 STAN
March 09 2014, 07:57PM
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@ Jeremy Ian I'm well aware of Bodie's marginal hockey history, but some grinders (and Clarkson is a grinder, in spite of a one-off, 30-goal season) never get the chance to play with the likes of Kovalchuk and Elias. Clarkson lucked out. Bodie didn't.

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#8 Reimerfan
March 10 2014, 08:31AM
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Rij wrote:

According to www.sportsclubstats.com/NHL/Eastern/Atlantic/Toronto.html, the Leafs have a 40 percent chance of making the playoffs with only 90 points but a 98 percent chance with 94 points. I think this is evidence of the dogfight that is about to ensue.

Also, if they do get to 94 points, the chance of playing Habs in first round is only 4 percent. Most likely opponents would be Pittsburgh and Boston at 36 percent each.

Lastly, current odds of making playoffs are 70 percent and winning the cup is 0.3 percent. Maybe hold off on planning the parade route for now...

Well with Bernier and the Defense team we got at the helm, we are looking great hahahahahahahahahahaha can't stop myself it's just so funny...but hey there's always next year....hahahahahaha

OH LOOK TORONTO LOST AGAIN.....this is from my daughters speach...everyone loved it...

GO REIMER GO....but hopefully with a much better team....

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#9 Mike Smith from Mimico Ontario
March 10 2014, 02:42PM
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jvuc wrote:

You guys are all wrong. The leafs are not making the playoffs. Look at fenwick, look at corsi. The leafs are the same as the wild just a few years back that are seeing success based on percentages.

With Randy and Nonis at the helm, the the 18 wheeler is coming and advanced stats will once again be vindicated. The only way to salvage the season is to fire Carlyle and Nonis.

No.

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