What are the chances?

Of a puck going in, of a team winning a game, of enough points piling up to make the playoffs?

Most people want to know that so they can gamble. And usually you gamble with money, but fans, particularly fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs, want to know how much they should gamble with their hearts.

Here are some expert opinions:

If you want to see MoneyPuck’s overall graph, the big wheel of colourful perhapsness, here it is:

Hockey Reference has a probabilities page, and it shows the Leafs at 75.6% and Booooins at 78.3% chance of making the playoffs.  They have the Islanders at 31.4%.  (This is before last night’s games, so check back a little later for today’s updated numbers.)

Sports Club Stats, which doesn’t have a very high reputation amongst the nerd-o-sphere, nonetheless has this graph of highly agitated lines:

Toronto is that brown (!!) line just below the knot of sure thing teams up at the top.  You really need to look at this on their site and use the hover text to tell you what’s going on.  But the Leafs are at 85 percent right now.

Micah McCurdy has a whole series of line graphs showing various probabilities.  Yesterday, he (his math, rather) put the Leafs up over the Boooins before the game:

And he has his playoff bracket psychedelic crab of doom all ready for this year too:

He’ll have even happier looking versions later today with last night’s games included.

So, probably it’s safe to plan for playoffs.  Now we just have to figure out how you do that.

What’s your plan for playoff hockey?

What do you do to get ready for playoffs.

Stock up on beer.34
Stock up on chips and beer.56
Stock up on chips, beer and hard liquor because this is still the Leafs.187
Write out my family’s names on post-it notes so I don’t forget.40
This poll is an outrage, you’re jinxing us!163
Prepare for the inevitable collapse because we can’t have nice things.128