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What If...

Wednesday, 04.4.2012 / 6:42 PM CT / Features
By Jay Levin  - Nashville Predators
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What If...
As the puck drops for tonight's Detroit game at St. Louis, a game with major seeding implications for the Preds, I can't help but think of 5 measly little seconds.

Yeah, at the end of the season every team looks back at a game here or there and wonders “what if…” but man those five seconds at the end of the Preds February 17 game in Detroit….

Even with an overtime loss in that game, the race for the No. 4 seed and home ice in first round of the playoffs would be radically different. And watching tonight's Wings/Blues game would be a little more relaxed.

The Preds enter tonight’s game with a one point edge over No. 5 seed Detroit. Add one point to the Preds total and Detroit’s climb would be more challenging. Nashville already appears to be in good position in a tie-breaker against Detroit – the Preds hold a +2 win advantage in ROW (regulation and overtime wins, the first tie-breaker if team’s finish the season with the same number of points) with the Red Wings only having three more games on their schedule. But the second tie-breaker, head-to-head series, is tied 3-3-0 with all six games finishing in regulation; that single point would have given the Preds the one-point win in head-to-head. The third tie-breaker is goal differential, a category where the Red Wings hold a significant edge over the Predators.

Not to discount all the great Preds comebacks this season – the wild wins over Columbus (both on the road and at home, thank you Martin Erat for your goal with 8.4 seconds left; yes I know the irony of pining over five seconds and waxing poetic over nine seconds) an unreal third period at Minnesota (yes, I know, Fisher’s game-winner was scored with mere seconds left on the clock, see the same disclaimer on the Erat goal) – but the fan in us tends to focus more on what our team could have done and less on what our team actually did.

Especially when the end of season standings are so close.

And one point here or there can make the difference between staying in Smashville for Games 1 and 2 or opening on the road.

So as we get ready for the final four nights of games, those final five seconds at Detroit will pull at our brains.

What if….

SMASHVILLE CENTRAL

SCHEDULE
 

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS
 

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 CHI 58 36 18 4 160 134 76
2 DAL 55 35 15 5 178 147 75
3 STL 57 31 17 9 138 133 71
4 LAK 54 33 18 3 151 128 69
5 COL 58 29 25 4 155 160 62
6 SJS 53 28 20 5 154 143 61
7 ANA 53 26 19 8 120 125 60
8 NSH 55 25 21 9 142 148 59
9 ARI 54 25 23 6 143 164 56
10 MIN 54 23 21 10 133 134 56
11 VAN 54 22 20 12 125 144 56
12 CGY 54 25 26 3 144 160 53
13 WPG 54 24 27 3 139 157 51
14 EDM 56 22 29 5 138 168 49

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Josi 55 11 29 -2 40
F. Forsberg 55 18 18 -7 36
S. Weber 55 14 21 -5 35
M. Ribeiro 55 6 28 3 34
J. Neal 55 20 13 18 33
M. Ekholm 55 6 19 3 25
R. Ellis 54 6 16 2 22
C. Smith 55 11 7 -1 18
C. Jarnkrok 54 9 8 0 17
C. Wilson 38 4 12 -1 16
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 20 18 8 .902 2.57
C. Hutton 5 2 1 .916 2.36