Here's the current magic #'s. This assumes that Detroit, Vancouver, St. Louis and Nashville are unable to be caught by the Kings, so that leaves 4 spots for the remaining 11 teams. So long as 7 teams are eliminated before the Kings elimination # hits zero, the Kings will make the playoffs.
Updates from action through 3/14:
Chicago – Games remaining: 11. Magic number: 29
Dallas – Games remaining: 11. Magic number: 28 (-2)
San Jose – Games remaining: 13. Magic number: 27
Phoenix – Games remaining: 11. Magic number: 26 (-0)
Los Angeles – Games remaining: 12 Elimination Number: 25
Calgary – Games remaining: 12. Elimination number: 25
Colorado – Games remaining: 10. Elimination number: 23 (-0)
Anaheim – Games remaining: 11. Elimination number: 16 (-0)
Minnesota – Games remaining: 12. Elimination number: 15
Edmonton – Games remaining: 12. Elimination number: 8 (-0)
Columbus – ELIMINATED
LA Kings W = 2 points off of ALL opponents’ magic numbers
LA Kings OTL = 1 point off of ALL opponents’ magic numbers
LA Kings L = 0 points off of ALL opponents’ magic numbers
Opponent W = 0 points off of their magic number
Opponent OTL = 1 point off of their magic number
Opponent L = 2 points off of their magic number
Hoping it happens, and disappointed that they put themselves in this position, but overall I am not too concerned about it. I like the team composition and the core we have built. I've already known for some time that mathematically, we are in a lot of trouble, hopefully the guys respond and put on a show here for us in these final few games. We definitely have a team capable of pulling it off.
“Every good army needs a couple of criminals.” - Dean Lombardi
As mentioned, we have to get some sort of winning streak going here. We've played extremely well the last three games (I thought we played great in Nashville...) and we need to build on that. We have a tough schedule coming up (although, MOST of the hard teams we face are at home) and tonight against ANA at home is a must win. That's a no-brainer.
Anaheim** vs. Los Angeles Los Angeles @ Nashville
Los Angeles @ Columbus Los Angeles @ Detroit*
Los Angeles @ Chicago Detroit vs. Los Angeles
Los Angeles @ Anaheim Nashville vs. Los Angeles*
San Jose** vs. Los Angeles
St Louis** vs. Los Angeles
Boston vs. Los Angeles Los Angeles @ Vancouver
Los Angeles @ Calgary
Los Angeles @ Edmonton
Los Angeles* @ Minnesota
Edmonton** vs. Los Angeles San Jose vs. Los Angeles
Los Angeles @ San Jose
* = 2nd game of a back-to-back for LA.
** = 2nd game of back-to-back for the opposing team. Bold = "tough" games to win.
Anaheim** vs. Los Angeles - W
Los Angeles @ Nashville - L
Los Angeles @ Columbus - W
Los Angeles* @ Detroit - L
Los Angeles @ Chicago - W
Detroit vs. Los Angeles - OTL
Los Angeles @ Anaheim - W
Nashville vs. Los Angeles* - L
San Jose** vs. Los Angeles - W
St Louis** vs. Los Angeles - W
Boston vs. Los Angeles - OTL
Los Angeles @ Vancouver - L
Los Angeles @ Calgary - OTL
Los Angeles @ Edmonton - W
Los Angeles* @ Minnesota - W
Edmonton** vs. Los Angeles - W
San Jose vs. Los Angeles - W
Los Angeles @ San Jose - L
The unfortunate part is that the team we need to catch (Dallas) we don't play again.
Dallas' remaining schedule:
Sun Mar 4, 2012 Stars Flames Tue Mar 6, 2012 Stars Canucks
Thu Mar 8, 2012 Sharks Stars
Sat Mar 10, 2012 Ducks Stars
Tue Mar 13, 2012 Stars Wild Wed Mar 14, 2012 Stars* Jets
Fri Mar 16, 2012 Blackhawks Stars Tue Mar 20, 2012 Coyotes Stars
Thu Mar 22, 2012 Canucks Stars
Sat Mar 24, 2012 Flames Stars
Mon Mar 26, 2012 Stars Flames
Wed Mar 28, 2012 Stars Oilers Fri Mar 30, 2012 Stars Canucks
Sat Mar 31, 2012 Stars* Sharks
Tue Apr 3, 2012 Sharks Stars
Thu Apr 5, 2012 Stars Predators
(Blues will be resting players)
Sat Apr 7, 2012 Blues Stars
Bold = "tough" games to win.
* = back-to-back (only 2 vs. the Kings 3)
Definitely will be exciting down the stretch. By no means is it over, but it will definitely put this team to the test. We've been looking for that balance of defense and offense and if the last three games are any indication, then I think we'll make it.
The remaining schedule is pretty daunting, with two games against Detroit and Nashville, and one each against Boston, St. Louis, and Vancouver. What we got going for us here is that the Kings, for some reason, have played their best hockey against so-called "elite" teams (and winning as well).
The fact that they play San Jose three more times is also interesting...but San Jose is playing terrible of late; not sure what team will show up against the Kings.
Call me greedy gentlemen and ladies but this may well be the last year the Pacific division title is awarded. They are 3 points out of the lead, I say **** just making the playoffs lets go for the #3 birth.
Updated projected final standings assuming teams continue to earn points at their current rate this season:
Before last night:
VAN (NW) 114
DET (C) 112
PHX (P) 96
STL (C) 110
NAS (C) 104
CHI (C) 96
SJS (P) 95
DAL (P) 92
LAK (P) 90
COL (NW) 88
After last night:
DET (C) 112
VAN (NW) 112
PHX (P) 95
STL (C) 111
NAS (C) 105
CHI (C) 96
SJS (P) 94
DAL (P) 92
LAK (P) 91
CGY (NW) 87
Kings moved to 29th in scoring. Notable because no team has ever made the playoffs at #30.
As I noted in the OP, the Kings can only afford 5 or fewer regulation losses in (now) the next 17 games to make the playoffs. 9-5-3, 10-5-2, some combination of 5 losses in regulation or less should safely land the Kings in the playoffs. This takes in to account tiebreakers, which the Kings will likely lose.
Playoff odds increased from a 33% chance to essentially a coin flip (47%) last night due to getting so much help from other teams. They (still) have gone 4 months without a 3 game win streak. If they win in Nashville, that will be 3 wins in a row for the first time since October.
They've won 3 out of 4. Realistically, there is only one team the Kings can hope to leapfrog, and that's still Dallas.
What about San Jose? They have the same number of points as Dallas and there are three games left against them
EDIT - I see what you're saying, you're talking strictly point projections at the current pace.
Correct... and realistically, there is very little overall movement post all-star break because top 8 teams play each other so often. Teams in the top 8 tend to stay there. Overtaking even one team is extremely difficult.
Just look at the Ducks. When Boudreau took over on Dec. 2, 2011. The team was 10 points out of a playoff spot.
Even after the ridiculous run they went on, they only made up 4 points of that 10 point playoff deficit. They were 6 points out of the No. 8 seed. How many points are they out today? 7. Even if they had won last night. 5 points out. They haven't really moved at all.
Just too many teams to leapfrog. Goal differential is another key stat. Kings are +, Dallas is - (and the only - GD team in the playoffs at present). San Jose should start winning games again soon. Phoenix will stay in. Dallas and LA should swap spots, so say the stats anyway
Almost every team in the top 12 or so has gone on a ridiculously hot run at some point this season except the Kings. If the Kings are going to do it, now would be a really good time.