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Calgary Flames Playoff Update (Feb 27)

There’s two possible streams now

NHL: Calgary Flames at Carolina Hurricanes James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Well...that was a solid week for the Calgary Flames. After picking up four wins since my last playoff update, the Flames have moved into the conversation for potentially usurping a divisional opponent from one of the three Pacific spots.

First we can look at the Flames and then separate into the Pacific stream, and the Wild Card stream. All % courtesy of sportsclubstats.com as of completion of play Feb 26.

Calgary Flames (33-26-4, 70 pts) 1st Wild Card Spot; Playoff Chances 73.8% (+29.7%)

Last Five Games: 4-0-1

Next Five Games: 28/02 vs LA, 03/03 vs DET, 05/03 vs NYI, 09/03 vs MTL, 11/03 @ WPG

After a tough eastern road trip, the Flames return home for a four game slate against three teams outside the playoffs, and the struggling Canadiens. If the Flames can get some help tonight from Minnesota against LA, then the Flames could put a stranglehold on their playoff position with a victory Tuesday. Things are looking very up for Calgary.

Option A: Wild Card Race

Let’s take a quick look at the teams we have been following for the past few weeks since this is still the more likely option.

St. Louis Blues (31-25-5, 67 pts) 2nd Wild Card Spot; Playoff Chances 83.7% (N/A)

Last Five Games: 2-3-0

Next Five Games: 28/02 vs EDM, 03/03 @ WPG, 05/03 @ COL, 07/03 @ MIN, 10/03 vs ANA

After having a six game winning streak snapped, the Blues have lost three regulation games in a row and have fallen back into a wild card spot after briefly occupying a Central Division spot. The Predators have been playing very well of late and moved up to overtake the Blues. The Blues have two games in hand on Calgary but are three points back of the Flames so there is a nice buffer. It’ll also be interesting to see if they deal Kevin Shattenkirk this week.

Los Angeles Kings (30-27-4, 64 pts) 9th in West; Playoff Chances 49.7% (-13.7%)

Last Five Games: 2-3-0

Next Five Games: 27/02 @ MIN, 28/02 @ CGY, 02/03 vs TOR, 04/03 vs VAN, 09/03 vs NSH

We’ll wait and see how the Ben Bishop acquisition ends up working out for the Kings but they looked very good in Jonathan Quick’s return from injury on Saturday in a 4-1 win. Will he be the spark they need to get the Kings into the postseason?

Dropped Out: Winnipeg Jets 6.3% (-7.3%)

Option B: Pacific Division Spot

Now I never thought the Flames would get into a position to push for a divisional playoff spot, but here they are as they sit only four points back of Anaheim and Edmonton with the same number of games played. Their playoff percentages are high but it’s more important to note how close the Flames are in points rather than the %.

Anaheim Ducks (32-21-10, 74 pts) 2nd in Pacific; Playoff Chances 95.3% (N/A)

Last Five Games: 2-3-0

Next Five Games: 03/03 vs TOR, 05/03 vs VAN, 07/03 vs NSH, 09/03 @ CHI, 10/03 @ STL

The Ducks have slowed down slightly over the month of February going 4-6-1 and the Flames are now firmly in their rear view mirror. Calgary and Anaheim play twice in early April, so it’s not totally outrageous to think they have a shot to catch them.

Edmonton Oilers (33-22-8, 74 pts) 3rd in Pacific Division; Playoff Chances 98.9% (N/A)

Last Five Games: 2-3-0

Next Five Games: 28/02 @ STL, 04/03 vs DET, 07/03 vs NYI, 10/03 vs PIT, 12/03 vs MTL

I still cringe whenever I think of the Oilers as a playoff team after the last decade. Like the Flames, the Oilers get a home heavy schedule in March except it’s even more ridiculous with 11 of 13 games at Rogers Arena. Although also like Calgary the Oilers have fared better on the road this season as well. It’ll be interesting for the two Alberta teams.

I’ll likely bring the next playoff update next week after the Islander game to let you know how the Flames playoff quest has evolved. But for the time being, things are looking even better than imagined.