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Do the Calgary Flames Have a Shot at the Pacific Division?

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Things have to go the Flames way down the stretch

NHL: San Jose Sharks at Calgary Flames Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Following last night’s win over Colorado, the Flames now sit with 90 points in the standings. One of the more captivating storylines over the last few weeks has been the hot streaks of the Flames, Oilers, and Ducks, while the Sharks have lost six straight.

Prior to the losing streak, San Jose had won 7 of 9 and had healthy leads of 7, 9, and 10 points on the Ducks, Flames, and Oilers respectively. Here’s how the standings look today:

So with the Flames 3 points behind Anaheim, and 1 point behind the Sharks and Oilers, do the Flames still have a realistic shot of winning the division?

First let’s look at the games that teams have remaining:

Game # CGY EDM ANA SJ
76 vs LA at VAN vs NYR
77 vs LA vs SJ at WPG at EDM
78 vs SJ vs ANA at EDM at CGY
79 vs ANA at LA at CGY at VAN
80 at ANA at SJ vs CGY vs VAN
81 at LA at VAN vs CHI vs EDM
82 at SJ vs VAN vs LA vs CGY

Average Points of Opponents: CGY 87, ANA 85, SJ 85, EDM 81

Head to Head Games

  1. March 30 San Jose @ Edmonton
  2. March 31 San Jose @ Calgary
  3. April 1 Anaheim @ Edmonton
  4. April 2 Anaheim @ Calgary
  5. April 4 Calgary @ Anaheim
  6. April 6 Edmonton @ San Jose
  7. April 8 Calgary @ San Jose

What has to Happen to Win the Division?

Basically for the Flames to have any shot of winning the division, they’d have to beat Anaheim in both games against them. Ordinarily that wouldn’t be impossible with the league’s 29 other teams, but with the Honda Center the way it is for Calgary, it’s going to be difficult.

The Flames will probably have to at least win once against the Sharks and win both games against the Kings. Again easier said then done as the Flames usually struggle in California.

So Calgary basically needs to go at least 4-1-1 or 5-1 the rest of the way to have a shot at the division.

In terms of who to cheer for in the matchups involving the other teams, you can really pick your poison between Edmonton and San Jose. There’s a slight benefit to hoping for the Oilers to win in terms of ROW but it’s pretty small.

As for Ducks/Oilers it’ll come down to just cheering for whoever has less points in the standings at the time of the game being played.

Any real chance though for the Flames to win the division will rest on those two games against Anaheim, and that the Flames can get some help, particularly from LA and Vancouver.

The odds are slim but they’re still within the realm of possibility heading into the last week and a half of the season.

As for home ice in the playoffs, that spot is still very much up for grabs and the games against the Sharks will go a long way to determining how the second spot finishes.

These next six games should all be high intensity, playoff-style matchups and should be the perfect primer for what’s ahead for the Flames in April.

We all knew before the season that the Flames would need to be in a playoff spot prior to this six game stretch, and they are. Now they’ll just be battling for seeding in these crucial games rather than for a wild-card spot.

At the end of the day we’re just talking about where the Flames will be seeded in the playoffs, and forgetting just how awesome it is to be back.

As the NHL playoffs have shown more than any other league, all you really need to make a run is just to get a ticket to the big dance regardless of opponent. Although avoiding Chicago would be nice!

Poll

Where will the Flames Finish in the Pacific Division?

This poll is closed

  • 6%
    First
    (45 votes)
  • 25%
    Second
    (169 votes)
  • 43%
    Third
    (284 votes)
  • 23%
    Fourth
    (157 votes)
655 votes total Vote Now