Houston Aeros 1994-2013: Thank you for all the great memories and two decades of great hockey and entertainment.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Weekly Power Rankings: Now it's go time

There is only one clear-cut awesome team in the Western Conference this season. That team, obviously, is the OKC Barons. They will get everyone back for the playoffs, and they it will take a huge, huge upset for them not to play for the Calder Cup in June. And only teams that get to avoid them until the conference finals are the teams that end up winning the other divisions.

If you play in the West Division, and you advance, you're going to see the Barons in round 2.  Statement deleted because it is not factually correct. Many apologies.

PLAYOFFS?
But beyond OKC dominance, there is a ton of parity. From the 2 seed all the way down to the 11 seed, just nine points separates those 10 teams. And I think every one of those teams has a chance to make the playoffs. Unless they win 15 of 20 to close out the year, I just don't think Grand Rapids, Rockford, Hamilton or Texas has a good shot.

The Aeros, for example, don't play again until Saturday and could be in ninth place by after the weekend. They have 21 games left. If they go 11-10 in those games, the Aeros will finish with 86 points. Right now, 9th place Rochester has 61 points and has just 20 games left. They'd need to go 13-7 the rest of the way to pass the Aeros.

Both of those are quite feasible, but I think the Aeros actually have 12-14 wins left in them, unless the Wild are HUGE sellers later today.

Of all the teams battling for a 4-8 seed, the Aeros actually have the best schedule the rest of the way. Later on this week, I will start my playoff seeding spreadsheet that will show you a day-to-day look at the playoff picture. In that I don't really predict who will go ... I just show everyone's remaining schedule and results.

In the poll this week, again, there was not a whole lot of movement. Chicago dropped back a few spots. They are banged up and lost all three games this week. Grand Rapids and Rockford both had really good weeks, so they leapfrog Hamilton and Texas, who both did not play well during the last seven days.

It will be interesting to see which AHL teams are affected the most by the deadline. So far, Peoria is in the lead there with the loss of Ben Bishop. With as bad as they are defensively, they really need that guy ... We'll see what the week holds for them.


2011-12 Western Conference Power Rankings
Edition 5, February 27, 2012

PR
Team
Record
Streak
Last
+/-
For the record …
1
OKC
35-15-2-3
1-0
2-1-0-0
-
Won 20 of 27 on the road
2
TOR
31-19-4-2
1-0
2-1-0-0
-
Hottest team in the West
3
CHA
31-19-2-4
0-1
1-0-0-1
+1
Goals allowed a bit of a concern
4
SAT
30-23-2-1
0-1
2-1-0-0
+1
Dov still saving their bacon
5
CHI
30-20-2-3
0-3
0-2-1-0
-2
Injuries take their toll
6
HOU
26-17-3-9
1-0
1-1-0-0
+1
Snapped 4-game slide vs. TEX
7
PEO
30-24-2-1
1-0
2-2-0-0
-1
Swept in weekend set vs. SA
8
ABB
29-21-3-2
0-1
1-1-0-2
-
Just got Kolanos back *gulp*
9
MKE
28-22-2-2
1-0
2-0-0-1
-
Points in all 3 games last week
10
RCH
26-21-6-3
3-0
3-0-0-0
+1
Won’t go away; bad on road
11
LEM
27-25-2-3
0-1
1-2-0-1
-1
Lost 3 of 4 to fall back
12
GRR
23-21-5-4
3-0
3-0-0-0
+2
Conklin in the fold and winning
13
RFD
24-26-2-4
3-0
3-0-0-0
+2
They own the Wolves lately
14
HAM
25-25-1-4
0-1
1-2-0-0
-2
Falling again. 
15
TEX
24-27-2-2
0-1
1-2-0-0
-2
Just about out of it.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is the playoff bracket going to be fixed or will it re-seed after the first round? If it reseeds, a Western Division team wouldn't necessarily face OKC in the 2nd round. It would just take an upset against the #2 or #3 seed to avoid it. And not that big an upset. I don't see the #2 or #3 seeds as that much better than the #6 or #7 seeds. Although the short first round would probably help the higher seeds.

Andrew J. Ferraro said...

That is a good question about the re-seeding. I will try to look that up.

And yeah, I guess I should have looked that up before posting ... we'll make that change on the blog now.

And ... the 2-8 seeds are going to be very very close to each other, I think.

4-8 for sure.

newtex said...

Another question. Do we know the format for the new first round? It's just 5 games now so are they going to do 2-2-1 or some kind of 3-2 or 2-3 to reduce travel. Neither one seems very fair.

Thanks.