From Here to Eternity - the remaning November schedule
Just peeked at the schedule for the rest of the month. Then I scanned the conference standings. Whoa.
Three of the next five games are against the top three teams in the league (San Jose, New Jersey, and Colorado respectively). Throw in the Dead Things, Columbus, and Cal-Gary and you have murderer's row.
Florida and St. Louis are the only teams behind the Preds in points.
I know we are finally getting healthy. If we stay healthy, the next two weeks should provide a good measuring stick for our potential come spring.
It's going to be rough breaking into the middle of the fight. So many teams have been doing excellent early on, and even if they were mediocre for the rest of the season, they'd still be sitting pretty. I don't know. I don't see us breaking into the top 8 between now and the end of the year. Once again it'll be a fight towards the end of the season.
But on the bright side, 12 of our next 16 games are at home (7 of the last 8 in November). As long as the team doesn't get complacent playing at home, this is a good chance to rack up some wins. We've always been tough to play at home so hopefully they can take advantage of that and get some wins.
I used to fall into the trap of looking at the standings after about 20 games and thinking that there was very little that could change but year after year it always seems that one or two teams that start out unexpectedly hot get cold and fall out and one or two teams finishes very strong and sneaks in after looking like they are out of it all year.
Phoenix started strong last year and cratered, and the Blues came from nowhere and got the 6 seed.
Anaheim was out of the top 8 for much of last year, as well.
I believe the Avs are still destined to fall, and when they do it will be HARD...
Kings wont crash and burn but I still dont think they have the staying power to make it all the way to April. I also dont think dallas can hold on to that #8 spot they are in right now...
If those three all drop out I could see us, Vancouver and either the Blues or the Ducks taking those spots..
I'm trying to get a handle on OUR potential with a healthy roster based on how we play against top tier teams. Today, I'm not too concerned with where other teams will finish in points. Teams will fade, some will get hot. I merely want to see what our potential is.
Over the next two weeks we are playing some really good teams AND we seem to be fairly healthy. Some questions I have may be answered between now and the December...
Will Rinne shine? Will the SAD line consistently produce points? Will Tootoo's line agitate and draw penalties? Are our youthful defensemen maturing i.e. limiting turnovers, blowing assignments, etc..?
Hopefully we'll see if we are coming together as a team -- based on our play against tough opposition.