Wednesday, November 07, 2007

What's that? Uh -- Playoffs?...

...don't talk about -- playoffs? You kidding me? Playoffs? I just hope we can win a game!"

So goes the famous quote, delivered in a high-pitched, whiny voice by Jim Mora, then coach of the NFL's Indianapolis Colts, after a loss to the San Francisco 49ers in 2001.

So, we'll talk about playoffs.

After the Hurricanes game, we noted that no Caps team had ever lost ten of their first 15 games and made the playoffs. Last night, the Caps avoided by the blade of their skatey-skate-skates having tumbled into that ditch, losing 2-1 to the Atlanta Thrashers in overtime to finish their first 15 games 5-9-1.

Truth be told, the Caps have made the playoffs with as bad a record or worse in their first 15 games. In 1994-1995, they made the playoffs with a 3-9-3 record (nine points) in their first 15, and in 2000-2001 they did it with a record of 3-7-4-1 (11 points). In fact, of the 18 times the Caps have made the playoffs, they did so having endured a sub-.500 record in their first 15 games nine times.

But here is the hole they’ve dug for themselves – if 92 points is the threshold for the playoffs this year (it was in the East last year), then the Caps would have to play ten games above .500 for the season. Right now, they are four games under. So, over the last 67 games, they have to play 14 games over .500 to make the dance. If they were to match the eighth-place record of the Islanders of last year (40-30-12), that would mean going 35-21-11.

Do the Caps have it in them?

1 comment:

DMG said...

I for one this it's possible but of course it's going to depend on how they play against their division. In my opinion the Capitals are better than the Panthers (who haven't developed yet), Thrashers (who have no depth) and Lightning (who have no defense). If they can rack up a good record against those guys they could come up with the number of points they need to get into the playoffs.