Statistically speaking, here are the Flyers' playoff probabilities over the final 20 games.
BUFFALO – Last time we checked in on the Flyers’ chances of making the playoffs – back on Jan. 22 – the Flyers had just a 69-percent chance of making the playoffs according to PlayoffStatus.com.
Thanks to an 8-5 record since then, but more likely the 18-8-1 run they’ve been on in their last 27 games, the Flyers check in today with a 94-percent shot to make the playoffs.
That sounds pretty good. PlayoffStatus.com uses probabilities that all future games are assumed won/lost based on relative team strengths and records.
Here’s the breakdown:
5% chance for 4th place (and home ice in the 1st round)
27% chance for 5th place
40% chance for 6th place
14% chance for 7th place
7% chance for 8th place
6% chance to not make the playoffs
For the record, the Flyers have a less than 1% chance to win the Atlantic division. We think it may be slimmer than that.
With a win tonight in Buffalo, the Flyers will be just 4 points back of the Sabres for the 5th spot in the Eastern Conference. Interestingly, PlayoffStatus.com says the Flyers have a 34-percent chance for 5th with a win and a 22-percent chance with a loss.
Buffalo would likely need to win the Northeast division and the Flyers to finish sixth for these two teams to play each other in the first round.
Here is the best setup for what the Flyers’ need to do over their final 20 games in order to finish in specific spots.
Once in the playoffs – again, based on games won/lost so far – the Flyers have just a 34-percent chance of making it to the 2nd round… which doesn’t bode well for a team whose ultimate goal is the Stanley Cup.
Stay tuned. There is a lot of hockey left to be played. We'll know a lot more another week from now.
For the latest updates, follow Frank Seravalli on Twitter at http://twitter.com/DNFlyers.