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[Open Thread] Toronto Maple Leafs v. New Jersey Devils

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In one of those cute scheduling quirks the Leafs get to play host to the Devils twice in one week. Tonight is the first installment and I'll try to get some pictures since I'll be in attendance. I am not taking my bad luck charm buddy but my dad who's love for the Leafs has doomed them since he arrived in the 70s. However, he's been amongst the multitude lamenting every victory so maybe he has reverse karma.

The Leafs have two previous losses to the Devils by similar 3-2 scores. The first one marked the birth of my Woz hatred and really should have been a win for the Leafs while the second one ended a three-game winning streak and came a scant two weeks before the biggest kick to the nuts in sports history.

James Mirtle looks at the Leafs futile push for the playoffs (it's not futile until it's over James!) through the help of some statistic sites. He leaves us with this depressing note:

The troubling part, if you're a Leafs fan? Sportsclubstats reports that Toronto has a greater chance of making the playoffs than of finishing in dead last in the conference.

Other things to note - the Leafs have the toughest remaining schedule of any of the teams in the Eastern Conference. Hooray!

David Johnson has an interesting comment (actually, it's pretty funny to see that Anonymous # 2 has just clued into the fact that Leaf fans want the team to lose) which looks at previous performance. Here's where I'll draw a parallel to the world of financial planning. Here's a look at the legal disclaimer for Vancity (what a terrible name) Mutual Funds:

Mutual funds and other securities are not guaranteed, their values change frequently and past performance may not be repeated.

The emphasis is mine and applies to the Leafs. Will they go on the ridiculous run that James suggests is necessary to make the playoffs? Probably not but not necessarily because there is no precedent this year. After all, who would have thought that they would finish the 2005-2006 season the way that they did? If they repeated that this year then they'll probably end up in the playoffs. Of course, by the same token, David Johnson's comment looks at how the past 14/15/16 games have gone for teams but there is no guarantee that any team will repeat the same good run. Come April 6th we'll know whether the Leafs have a miracle run in them but until then we can fume/rejoice at the Leafs current play.