The 2012 Hitchhiker’s guide to the playoffs

The Penguins are 28-17-4. They have 60 points and are currently in fifth place. There are 10 weeks left in the Penguins season. So we broke it down week-by-week to estimate the points needed to obtain a playoff berth.
 
We used a few baselines.
1. Last year, the 8th-seeded Rangers qualified for the playoffs with 93 points.
2. The Penguins currently have 60 points, so using last year's benchmark, they need 33 more points.
3. Easy math: 33 points divided by 10 weeks = 3.3 points per week needed.
4. We broke down the combined records of teams the Penguins play over the next 10 weeks and did a completely unscientific estimate of points we think the Penguins can accumulate. We've built this flowchart to illustrate:

Pittsburgh Penguin flowchart

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In our estimation, we feel the Penguins can accumulate at least 35 points over the next 10 weeks.

After the Read More, we break down how we've come to this.

 

 

WEEK 1

Big time home and home out of the gate. Brutal way to start. Pens can beat Toronto once, find a way to sneak out a point against Boston or New Jersey on the road.

 

WEEK 2

 

Pens quietly have owned Montreal this season and have had some success against Tampa. Take 4 points out of a possible 6.

WEEK 3

The Ducks kind of suck, but Boudreau will have them all jammed up. Pens haven't fared well against Philly. Sneak out a point between those two teams, and then beat Buffalo.

WEEK 4

Interesting home stand for the Penguins. Huge.

The Rangers game will be enormous. Even if you lose, 4 points hang between Columbus and Tampa.

WEEK 5

 

Mini road trip halfway through. Pens need to take two wins here. Colorado sucks, and Dallas is beatable.

 

WEEK 6

One of the bigger weeks of the season. Four straight home games. Have to find a way to bank 4 points.

WEEK 7

Maybe the most important week of the season. Road division games change lives. Have to find a way to win one of these games.

WEEK 8

A chance to bank some points after a tough road schedule. The Jets can be beaten. Walking into the lion's den in Ottawa. 

WEEK 9

 

 

This could be the week someone enters the hospital. Back-to-back against the Islanders. Philly at home to end the week.

 

WEEK 10

The end is a Mexican standoff. The three teams the Penguins will have to beat to get out of the East. Win one game out of these.

 

That leaves us with this:

Those are just our estimates. Total hypothesis. This doesn't even count how many points the Penguins could possibly give up if they go to OT/Shootout. The ending to this season may be the craziest of any we've seen.

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