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Historical playoff success of the lower-seeded teams

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03-13-2012, 10:20 AM
  #1
Buck Aki Berg
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Historical playoff success of the lower-seeded teams

I posted this in the Dave Hodge thread in the BoH board, and thought it might be of some interest here. Not sure if there's much to discuss, this is more just to add to the collective knowledge

In the 17 seasons that the league has had its current playoff format:

♦ The 8th seed has advanced to the second round 9 out of 34 times. Out of those 9 appearances in the second round, they advanced to the conference finals twice, one of which they advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals, where they came within one game of winning ('06 Oilers).

♦ The 7th seed has escaped the first round on 15 out of 34 times. Only 4 of those 11 teams have advanced beyond, and all 4 made it to the Cup finals where they finally bowed out.

♦ The 6th seed has advanced to the second round 11 out of 34 times, 7 of whom they advanced to the conference finals. Only 1 of those 7 times have they reached the Cup finals, where they were quite literally an eighth of an inch from winning the Cup ('04 Flames)

♦ The 5th seed has advanced to the second round 9 out of 34 times (just as often as the 8th seed!). 4 of those teams advanced to the conference finals, one of whom - the '95 Devils - made it to the Cup finals, who took down Detroit in four straight to win the Cup.

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03-13-2012, 10:26 AM
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Epsilon
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With regards to the 5th seed lagging behind the 7th and 6th seeds, I'm curious how many times the 4th seed was actually the 2nd best team in the conference in terms of total points during the current playoff format, and what the record for those matchups is (have any even occurred? it looks plausible that will happen this year).

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03-13-2012, 02:11 PM
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barneyg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Epsilon View Post
With regards to the 5th seed lagging behind the 7th and 6th seeds, I'm curious how many times the 4th seed was actually the 2nd best team in the conference in terms of total points during the current playoff format, and what the record for those matchups is (have any even occurred? it looks plausible that will happen this year).
The first 5 years (1993-94 to 1997-98) had only 2 divisions per conference so they're not as easily comparable. For the 12 remaining years, the #4 seed was the team with the second most points 4 times out of 24:

1999-00 (NJ)
1999-00 (DET)
2000-01 (PHI)
2001-02 (TOR)
..also, in 2006-07, #4 NSH was tied in points with #2 ANA (both were behind #1 DET)
..and in 2010-11, #4 PIT was tied in points with #2 PHI but lost on a tiebreak.

The #4 seed had the 3rd most points 11 more times, and was really the "true" #4 seed 7 times.

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