NHL Playoffs Look Out of Reach For Two of Three Cali Teams
Less than two dozen games are left on the 2020-21 NHL schedule, and it is likely that at least two of the three California teams will miss the playoffs. Los Angeles Kings, Anaheim Mighty Ducks, and San Jose Sharks occupy the bottom three spots in the Honda West Division, with time running out fast to climb to the top four spots.
Los Angeles Kings will miss the NHL playoffs for the third year in a row if they fail to close the gap St. Louis Blueswho are the team in the fourth and final playoff place in the West Division.
“Los Angeles Kings” by NHL is licensed under CC BY 3.0
The Kings face the San Jose Sharks at home for the next two games before hosting the fifth-placed Arizona Coyotes on April 5 and 7. They then travel to the Sharks again for two games Las Vegas Golden Knights before heading to the 2020-21 NHL playoff favorites Colorado avalanche.
The Kings are the best players in the California trio to reach this season’s NLH playoffs. They have played two games fewer than the Coyotes in fifth place and one game fewer than the Blues; Kings follow coyotes by three points and blues by four points.
Kings will hold their own against other fighters, the Sharks, despite losing 1-2 and 2-4 in Games 31 and 32. The Kings face the Sharks four times in six games and must set a goal of at least six points to keep their playoff dreams alive.
Shark defense needs more bite
The Sharks are tied with the Kings, but they have played one more game than their rivals. Has a porous defense 120 goals leaked this season. Only four teams including the Buffalo sabers, WHO Lost 18 games in a row, conceded more goals during this campaign. Haie have allowed four or more goals in 15 of their 35 games. You cannot and cannot win games with a defense that is full of holes.
Sharks will appreciate their chances of making a comeback and attacking the playoff spots. The four games against the kings are as important to them as they are to the kings. You will also play the fighting Mighty Ducks three times on either side of these games against the Kings. From mid-April, however, the Sharks will have some tough games against them Minnesota Wild, Vegas, the Coyotes and Stanley Cup favorites, the Avalanche.
“San Jose Sharks” by NHL is licensed under CC BY 3.0
The mighty ducks are lame this season
You can write off the playoffs for Anaheim Mighty Ducks unless they start a never-before-seen winning streak while the teams fall apart above them. The Mighty Ducks have only 28 points from 37 games (0.378) and a goal difference of -40. You are currently 10 points behind fourth-placed Blues and played two more games.
The Mighty Ducks are 3-8 out of their last 11 games. That record would have been worse if it hadn’t been for 4-1 and 3-2 wins at the St. Louis Blues. They have to play Avalanche twice in April after losing 2-5 and 4-8 The disappointing 5-10-1 run in March.
Who will win the Stanley Cup?
It’s hard to leave the current two favorites behind when predicting a Stanley Cup champion. Avalanches are rightly the favorites. They went 12-2-3 in March, despite playing most of those games at home (10-1-2). How will you deal with having been out 14 times in the last 20 games?
The fact that the avalanche is about to travel makes us appreciate the odds of Tampa Bay Lightning. The Blitz is 24-9-2 this season with a difference of +39 goals in MassMutual East. Lightning is the reigning Stanley Cup champion and could only be the eighth team to win titles in a row. You would be the first since then Pittsburgh penguins in 2016 and 2017.