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NHL playoff race: Flyers' chances at the postseason reach new season-high with win

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The Flyers got a bit of help last night in Boston, but it was their huge come-from-behind win that now has their chances at making the playoffs looking as good as ever.

Playoff odds got me like
Playoff odds got me like
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

WHAT A WIN THAT WAS. That game last night was one the Flyers really needed against a shorthanded Colorado team, and a third-period comeback made it that much sweeter to watch. More on that game here and here.

Unsurprisingly, that win meant good things for the Flyers' playoff hopes. How good? Let's take a look.

What happened last night?

  • FLYERS WON WOOOOOOOOOOO (but you knew that already).
  • BRUINS LOST WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Dropped a 4-1 decision to the Florida PanthersMay have gotten screwed on a no-goal call in the process, but we're sure not going to let that stop us from enjoying it.
  • Detroit went way up on Montreal early and held off a frantic comeback late to get a 4-3 win over the Canadiens, so they keep pace with the Flyers.
  • Pittsburgh lost to NJ. Still not really on the Flyers' radar at the moment, but that's fun, isn't it?

How things look now:

Here's where the four teams in the race for the last three spots are as we stand today.

(Standing) Team Points Games Remaining ROW Remaining Strength of Schedule (Points %) Teams in Playoff Race* Left On Schedule Back-To-Backs Left On Schedule
(W1) NY Islanders 87 10 35 57.6% 6 3
(A3) Boston 86 7 35 54.9% 3 0
(W2) Philadelphia 85 9 34 56.0% 5 3
(W3) Detroit 85 8 35 54.3% 5 3

* "Teams In Playoff Race" includes any team in or within two points of a playoff spot; in other words, the sixteen teams currently in playoff spots plus Detroit and Colorado.

And here are each team's playoff odds. (Numbers in parentheses are changes compared to odds prior to yesterday's games.)

(Standing) Team Odds (SportsClubStats) Odds (hockey-reference) Odds (Hockeyviz) Odds (Moneypuck)
(W1) NY Islanders 97.1% (-0.5%) 96.8% (-0.5%) 96% (0%) 95.98% (-0.16%)
(A3) Boston 69.7% (-16.7%) 68.4% (-16.7%) 55% (-19%) 59.98% (-18.42%)
(W2) Philadelphia 75.5% (+10.1%) 76.3% (+13.8%) 81% (+7%) 79.78% (+8.96%)
(W3) Detroit 60.1% (+8.1%) 61.4% (+5.7%) 70% (+12%) 66.20% (+9.54%)

The standings- and goal-differential based models at SCS and hockey-ref seem to like the Flyers' odds slightly less than the more all-encompassing models at hockeyviz and moneypuck. However, every one of them has the Flyers' odds north of 75% -- in all cases, the highest they've been all season -- and ahead of both Detroit and Boston. Hard to complain!

Games that matter tonight:

Only one, and even that one's kind of a reach: the Islanders will head to Tampa to take on the Lightning. At this point this game probably doesn't have much to do with the Flyers' chances at making the playoffs -- no site that measures game-by-game odds sees this as a game that will have affect the Flyers' odds by even as much as a single percentage point.

However, if you're getting greedy and/or are eyeing the first Wild Card spot and a chance to avoid the Capitals in the first round of the playoffs, you'll want to keep your eye on it. The Isles definitely have the inside track on the Flyers for that spot, with an advantage of two points and one game still in hand. But a loss tonight would certainly make things a bit more interesting there.

For the most part, though, you can take the night off from scoreboard-watching after a busy week on that front. Enjoy the weekend, folks.