By Rob Ficiur
The following statistics from the last 24 years will predict with mathematical certainty who win the championship in June. (The statistics used in this article are based on the playoffs from 1989-2013). To keep the statistics accurate as possible, numbers from the lockout shortened 1995 and 2013 seasons were not included in the total points, goals for and goals against ranking. (Teams like Vancouver and Toronto were doing well this year at game 44, but missed the playoffs, so I chose not to use partial numbers.)
This is the sixth year I have used the statistical data to predict the Stanley Cup winner. (These mathematical calculations have never predicted the champ, but we will try it again. I was never good at predicting by logic or emotion when I tried it that way either).
1. a) Total Points: The team that finished first overall in league standings has won seven Stanley Cups in the last 23 years. First overall has won more Stanley Cups than any spot in overall standings (Mode). Mode: 1st overall is the Boston Bruins (1 vote for them.)
b) Adding up the 22 years, the average (mean) overall ranking is 4.04; meaning the fourth place overall team has the best chance of winning the Cup. This year team that finished fourth overall is the St. Louis Blues, one vote for them.
c) The average number of points of the Stanley Cup champion is 105. The team with the most points to win it all was the 1989 Flames with 117 points. The lowest team to win was the 1992 Pittsburgh Penguins with 87 points. This year no team finished with 105 points, but the closest is the Chicago Black Hawks; one vote for Chicago.
d) The mode (most common number) for Stanley Cup champs is 112 and 103 points. Three champs having earned that 112 and three have earned 103 and won the Stanley Cup. This year the Colorado Avalanche have 112 points; no teams have 103 points. Mode: One vote for the Colorado Avalanche.
2. Goals Against. We have been brainwashed to believe that defence wins championships. That may not be so.
a) The average ranking of the Stanley Cup champs in goals against average is 7.0. The team with the seventh best goals against average this year is the Minnesota Wild; one vote for them.
b) The 3rd best defensive teams have also won four Stanley Cups. This is the mode (most commonly occurring number). That means that the St. Louis Blues get one more vote.
3. Goals For. In 2012 the LA Kings were the 29th best offense in the NHL.
a) The average Stanley Cup champion ranked 5.2 in goals for during the regular season. So which team ranks fifth this year in goal scoring is the San Jose Sharks; one vote for them.
b) The mode in team offense is 2nd overall. Six teams that finished second in overall goals claimed the championship. One vote for the Anaheim Ducks.
Sub Total Conclusions: Total Votes so far: St. Louis 2, while the following teams have one: Boston, Chicago, Anaheim, Colorado, San Jose and Minnesota.
Tie Breaker Round (using only the eight teams from the previous list).
4. How did the team do the previous playoffs?
Of the last 24 Stanley Cup winners – ten of them won zero playoff rounds the year before. Of these ten teams who went from winning zero playoff rounds to champs three missed the playoffs and seven lost in the first round of the previous season. Of our eight finalists, only the Colorado Avalanche missed the playoffs last year. However, three of the teams, Minnesota, Anaheim and St. Louis were eliminated in the first round. One point will be added to each of those four teams round one total.
The Winner Will Be: Added together, the numbers conclusively precisely and positively predict that the St. Louis Blues will win the Stanley Cup for the first time in their 44 year history.