April 06, 2009

Logjam for President's Trophy: Didn't want to make a FPP for this, but I have a question about the NHL's tiebreaker policy. More inside first comment...

posted by MeatSaber to navel gazing at 10:09 PM - 6 comments

OK, the Bruins, Sharks, and Wings are all within sniifing distance of the top spot. Now, if the Bruins go 3-0-1, the Sharks 2-1, and the Wings win out, there's a three-way tie for the President's Trophy. According to ESPN, these are the tiebreakers:

1. The greater number of games won.
2. The greater number of points earned in games between the tied clubs. If two clubs are tied, and have not played an equal number of home games against each other, points earned in the first game played in the city that had the extra game shall not be included. If more than two clubs are tied, the higher percentage of available points earned in games among those clubs, and not including any "odd" games, shall be used to determine the standing.
3. Goal differential

I've removed #1, as it only pertains to in-season. Now, I've done the due diligence, and see that the Bruins beat the Wings 4-1 in their only game this season, but lost to San Jose 5-2. The Wings beat the Sharks in this system on goal differential (win total and points earned are ties). So each of the 3 loses to another. Who is the winner of the President's Trophy in this case? I know this all might be rendered moot come the weekend, but it's got me to wondering...

posted by MeatSaber at 10:10 PM on April 06

If hockey were soccer this would be meaningful but as the Stanley Cup is the real prize in the NHL its just one of those interesting conversation pieces ;)

(Note: I just mean that in soccer the league title is the most desired trophy, where in North American sports the playoff champhionship has place of pride.)

posted by billsaysthis at 11:55 AM on April 07

I'm more confused than when I started, but...

The Bruins and Sharks can end with 119 points and 54 wins if they go 3-0-1 and 2-1 respectively. If the Wings win out, they'd end up with 117 points and 54 wins which means they'd get third place.

The Bruins and Sharks have the same number of wins, so they'd move to the second tie-breaker.

Since they have only played once, the second tie-breaker can't be used, so they'd move to the third tie-breaker.

And on that front, the Bruins have a +79 goal differential while the Sharks have a +56 goal differential.

By my read, if it worked the way you have it written up, the B's win the President's Trophy.

But remember, I'm kinda drunk.

posted by 86 at 08:54 PM on April 07

Regardless of 86 being kind of drunk, I think they have the right of it. Because of the phrase in the second tiebreaker that says "have not played an equal number of home games", I would think that it would indeed be defunct, because the one game played would not be counted, due to that rule. The only thing that confuses me is the last part of that rule, "not including any "odd" games". By "odd", it means that in a three-way tie, each club must have had an equal number of home and away games against each of the other clubs, possibly?

I haven't the foggiest. Situations like this are just interesting to me.

posted by boredom_08 at 09:18 AM on April 08

Apparently ESPN's fact checkers made me look bad, because when I posted this, their standing said the Wings had 113 points. So I guess all that legwork I did was for naught. =D

And billy, I know the President's Trophy is meaningless, but in the 4 games the Wings and Sharks played, the home team won. Kinda makes home-ice a desirable acquisition...

posted by MeatSaber at 11:08 AM on April 08

Fair enough, Meaty. I was actually at one of those Shark home wins, in January, as the missus used her whiles to get me to buy tickets.

posted by billsaysthis at 06:09 PM on April 09

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