Dec 28, 2010, 7:04 PM EDT
On Monday night, we posted some reactions to a piece that claimed the Buffalo Sabres were getting “screwed” by their schedule thanks to a tough road trip. That got us thinking about which groups of home and away games might have the biggest impact on every team in the NHL.
To look at that more deeply, we decided to analyze each squad through the prism of the league’s six divisions over the next few days.
First up – because we’re arbitrarily going in alphabetical order – is the Atlantic Division.
Not that it will matter much, most likely, but let’s look at them anyway.
Best home span: They are involved in their best homestand right now, as they’re playing at home in six of seven from December 23-January 6th.
Worst road trip: No streaks stand out too much, although they do have a couple four-game trips.
Like the Devils, it might not really matter but let’s go over it anyway.
Two big alternating sets of home and away trips:
Part 1: Five in a row on the road (Dec 31-Jan 9) then five home games in a row and six of seven at home overall (Jan 11-23).
Part 2: Five in a row at home (March 2-11) then five away (March 12-22).
OK, now we’re getting to the teams that are a little more relevant. The Rangers don’t have any especially big homestands or road trips, though. Their toughest road trip might actually begin on Wednesday, as they play five of their next six away from Madison Square Garden from December 29-January 8th.
The Flyers are neck-and-neck with Pittsburgh for the division (and therefore league/conference) lead, but their schedule is awfully tough going forward.
Brutal road ahead: Philly faces five road games in a row (Dec 28- Jan 6) then they host the Devils for one game on January 8th followed by four more consecutive away games (Jan 11-16).
Followed by a nice home-heavy run: At least the league will reward them a bit after that, as they play eight of 10 games in Philly from January 18-February 10th.
Finally, let’s look at the Penguins’ situation.
For the most part, they don’t have too many huge spans one way or the other, but chunks of streaks at home and on the road. However, their best stretch is probably four of five at home from February 2-10th while the toughest one might be a five game road trip from February 23-March 5th.
Looking at the Atlantic Division from this perspective, the Flyers’ work on their upcoming stretch of road games and then a big run of home contests through mid-February might be the biggest factor from a schedule perspective. It should be a fun race to watch.
- Mike Richards charged with possession of controlled substance 79
- Gio won’t go: Flames extend Giordano for six years, $40.5M 13
- Pens’ plan for now: Crosby starts as Kessel’s center 25
- O, Dear: Russia fined $85K for skipping Canadian anthem 28
- Kings ink Ehrhoff to a one-year, $1.5 million deal 27
- Quebec City, Vegas advance to final phase of NHL expansion process 50
- Here’s the full NHL 2015 preseason schedule, starting Sept. 20 5
- Wild assistant Sydor arrested for suspected drunk driving, child endangerment 30
- It’s Montreal Canadiens day at PHT 14
- Capitals’ biggest question: Is this finally the year? 32