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Final NHL standings, a look back at looking ahead

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In the interest of intellectual honesty, it's only fair to bring up my pre-season predictions for the Eastern & Western Conferences, and see how things actually ended up. The table below shows how each team's actual results compared to (and in order of) pre-season projections.

Naturally, I won't let these results get in the way of making playoff projections over the next few days!

 

Projected Actual
Team GF GA Exp. Win % SO Wins Pts GF GA Win % SO Wins Pts  Comment
EAST
 MTL 3.15 2.70 .613 5 105.5 2.95 2.93 .567 7 93 Team imploded after New Year's. Lang's injury was big.
 PHI 3.00 2.70 .578 5 99.8 3.17 2.83 .604 4 99 Poised to make some postseason noise.
 BUF 3.10 2.90 .550 5 95.1 2.95 2.79 .555 8 91 With those GF/GA numbers, they should have won more.
 NJD 2.55 2.40 .545 5 94.4 2.90 2.52 .646 6 106 Scoring more than most would have guessed.
 PIT 2.75 2.60 .542 5 93.8 3.15 2.84 .604 6 99 Dumping Therrien seems to have ignited this team.
 NYR 2.58 2.45 .538 5 93.3 2.44 2.58 .579 10 95 Not looking impressive heading into the playoffs.
 OTT 2.90 2.80 .526 5 91.3 2.60 2.82 .506 4 83 A late-season push wasn't nearly enough.
 WSH 3.00 2.90 .525 5 91.1 3.27 2.93 .659 4 108 Emergence of Mike Green pivotal to NHL's #3 offense.
 CAR 3.10 3.00 .524 5 91 2.88 2.70 .591 3 97 A very hot team right now.
 TBL 3.10 3.10 .500 5 87 2.52 3.28 .402 3 66 Take a "Saw" to this organization.
 BOS 2.60 2.75 .458 5 80.2 3.29 2.32 .707 4 116 Simply dominated at both ends of the rink.
 FLA 2.40 2.55 .455 5 79.6 2.82 2.72 .567 3 93 No playoffs, and now Bouwmeester likely walks away.
 ATL 2.65 3.00 .409 5 72 3.05 3.40 .463 7 76 Nothing new here.
 NYI 2.30 2.90 .334 5 59.7 2.42 3.34 .372 3 61 Injuries plagued them, but still need a lot of work.
 TOR 2.20 3.00 .284 5 51.6 2.98 3.49 .494 6 81 Even mediocrity exceeded expectations.
WEST
 DET 3.10 2.30 .709 5 121.3 3.52 2.93 .683 6 112 Defense & goaltending are huge concerns.
 DAL 2.85 2.50 .597 5 102.8 2.73 3.06 .506 6 83 Is this team the Biggest Flop of the season?
 SJS 2.70 2.40 .587 5 101.3 3.06 2.43 .713 6 117 32-5-4 home record is key for #1 playoff seed.
 ANA 2.55 2.30 .576 5 99.5 2.90 2.87 .555 7 91 Finally put it together at the end to squeak in.
 NSH 2.60 2.50 .529 5 91.8 2.52 2.78 .537 6 88 Offense about where I thought it would be, defense not tight enough.
 EDM 3.00 2.90 .525 5 91.1 2.78 2.98 .518 6 85 Young team still finding its way.
 MIN 2.50 2.50 .500 5 87 2.61 2.40 .543 5 89 Lemaire is gone, will Gaborik be next?
 CHI 2.70 2.70 .500 5 87 3.17 2.55 .634 4 104 Darlings of the NHL.
 VAN 2.35 2.40 .484 5 84.4 2.96 2.60 .610 3 100 It took Sundin some time, but this team is rolling.
 PHX 2.80 2.90 .474 5 82.7 2.50 3.04 .482 3 79 Still spinning their wheels in the desert.
 CGY 2.50 2.60 .471 5 82.2 3.06 3.00 .598 3 98 Limping into the playoffs.
 CBJ 2.45 2.70 .428 5 75.2 2.68 2.72 .561 6 92 Finally added enough O to Hitch's stingy D.
 COL 2.60 3.00 .395 5 69.8 2.32 3.08 .421 9 69 The Avalanche have fallen down the mountain.
 LAK 2.80 3.40 .359 5 64.9 2.46 2.76 .482 5 79 Lots of young talent, but serious holes to fill.
 STL 2.30 2.90 .334 5 59.7 2.77 2.77 .561 6 92 Huge 2nd-half run, give lots of credit to Chris Mason.