Latest Stats for the Syracuse Crunch:
That's a wrap!
The Syracuse Crunch's postseason hopes are slim, but technically they still exist. So that's...something.
Honestly, it's difficult for Crunch fans to believe that a team who has majored in inconsistency this season will get anywhere should they manage to bump gently into the American Hockey League's postseason. But, hockey fans know how the postseason is a very different beast from the regular season, so if the Crunch does manage to hold onto the ledge they're currently clinging to, who knows what will happen. To keep their hold, however, Syracuse needs nothing more than a minor miracle.
The Crunch currently sit in the last playoff spot in the North Division. According to this season's rules, the top four teams in every division will qualify for the postseason. However, thanks to an overloaded Atlantic Division - they have 8 teams, the North has 7 - a crossover rule is in place. Currently, the team in 5th place over in the Atlantic, the Portland Pirates, is ahead of the Crunch in points. Unless some major tanking goes on in the Atlantic, the Crunch will need to nab third place in the North in order to guarantee themselves a spot.
At the start of the weekend, the Crunch was in an okay position. They were four points behind the Utica Comets, a team they visited yesterday at the end of their three-in-three weekend. However, the Crunch then put itself in a rough situation by losing Friday and Saturday. Conversely, Utica won its games on Friday and Saturday. Going into Sunday's contest, Utica was 8 points ahead of the Crunch.
Syracuse did what it had to do yesterday, overcoming a 2-0 deficit to win the game 7-3. However, Syracuse is now still six points back from that third place spot. Utica has a game-in-hand over the Crunch. The two teams will face off twice more before the end of the season.
Syracuse has 75 points. Utica has 81. Portland has 83.
Putting it simply: The Crunch will need to win every one of their five games left. No matter what happens elsewhere, that's a given. But even with that, the organization will then need Utica to lose two games that aren't against Syracuse, though three would be better. The other scenario could be that Portland, who has 83 points and a game-in-hand, decides to lose at least five of their remaining six games (it could happen?), which could negate the crossover. Complicating that scenario, however, is that the Hartford Wolfpack are right behind Portland with 77 points. So, technically, Hartford is also a concern, though not an immediate one at the moment.
Don't ask me about tiebreakers. I might have to kill you.
Playoff math is fun, isn't?*
Now, about those 10 points Syracuse lost in overtime this past season...
*Disclaimer for all of that math: My abacus broke, so that information might be right or it might not be right. I think it's right. Here, look at this:
@Allovimo Basically have to go 5-0 including two regulation wins vs. Utica; Comets have to go 1-2-1 in addition to losing 2x to Crunch— Jason Chaimovitch (@JChaimo) April 3, 2016
There, I think that's what I said. Anyway, the Crunch really does need to win every game left, and that's in their control, so...Roll with it, boys. Roll with it.