Organizational Success Since the Lockout

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Many people debate what the best barometer is for team success.  Is it playoff appearances? Is it playoff series victories? Is it Stanley Cup victories?

That is up for debate; but for the purposes of this article, let’s create a simple scale to identify organizational success.  Particularly, let’s use the following point system:

Success Rate Points
Playoff appearance 1
First round victory 2
Second round victory 3
Third round victory 4
Stanley Cup Victory 5

 

Due to the fact that everyone enjoys analyzing the “New NHL,” the post-lockout years will be used to analyze success since the beginning of the 2005-06 NHL season.

There have been seven seasons since the lockout, and while that is a not necessarily a large sample size, the pre-salary cap years were such a different landscape than today’s game, that we will do our best to compare apples to apples.

2011-12 Season Points
Pittsburgh Penguins 1
Florida Panthers 1
San Jose Sharks 1
Ottawa Senators 1
Chicago Blackhawks 1
Boston Bruins 1
Vancouver Canucks 1
Detroit Red Wings 1
Nashville Predators 2
Washington Capitals 2
Philadelphia Flyers 2
St. Louis Blues 2
Phoenix Coyotes 3
New York Rangers 3
New Jersey Devils 4
Los Angeles Kings 5

 

2010-11 Season Points
Chicago Blackhawks 1
Los Angeles Kings 1
Phoenix Coyotes 1
Anaheim Ducks 1
Buffalo Sabres 1
Montreal Canadiens 1
Pittsburgh Penguins 1
New York Rangers 1
Philadelphia Flyers 2
Washington Capitals 2
Nashville Predators 2
Detroit Red Wings 2
San Jose Sharks 3
Tampa Bay Lightning 3
Vancouver Canucks 4
Boston Bruins 5

 

2009-10 Season Points
Phoenix Coyotes 1
Los Angeles Kings 1
Nashville Predators 1
Colorado Avalanche 1
Washington Capitals 1
New Jersey Devils 1
Buffalo Sabres 1
Ottawa Senators 1
Boston Bruins 2
Pittsburgh Penguins 2
Vancouver Canucks 2
Detroit Red Wings 2
San Jose Sharks 3
Montreal Canadiens 3
Philadelphia Flyers 4
Chicago Blackhawks 5

 

2008-09 Season Points
Montreal Canadiens 1
New York Rangers 1
New Jersey Devils 1
Philadelphia Flyers 1
San Jose Sharks 1
Columbus Blue Jackets 1
St. Louis Blues 1
Calgary Flames 1
Vancouver Canucks 2
Anaheim Ducks 2
Washington Capitals 2
Boston Bruins 2
Carolina Hurricanes 3
Chicago Blackhawks 3
Detroit Red Wings 4
Pittsburgh Penguins 5

 

2007-08 Season Points
Boston Bruins 1
Ottawa Senators 1
Washington Capitals 1
New Jersey Devils 1
Nashville Predators 1
Calgary Flames 1
Minnesota Wild 1
Anaheim Ducks 1
San Jose Sharks 2
Colorado Avalanche 2
New York Rangers 2
Montreal Canadiens 2
Philadelphia Flyers 3
Dallas Stars 3
Pittsburgh Penguins 4
Detroit Red Wings 5

 

2006-07 Season Points
New York Islanders 1
Tampa Bay Lightning 1
Atlanta Thrashers 1
Pittsburgh Penguins 1
Calgary Flames 1
Minnesota Wild 1
Dallas Stars 1
Nashville Predators 1
New York Rangers 2
New Jersey Devils 2
San Jose Sharks 2
Vancouver Canucks 2
Buffalo Sabres 3
Detroit Red Wings 3
Ottawa Senators 4
Anaheim Ducks 5

 

2005-06 Season Points
Montreal Canadiens 1
Tampa Bay Lightning 1
Philadelphia Flyers 1
New York Rangers 1
Nashville Predators 1
Detroit Red Wings 1
Dallas Stars 1
Calgary Flames 1
Ottawa Senators 2
New Jersey Devils 2
San Jose Sharks 2
Colorado Avalanche 2
Anaheim Ducks 3
Buffalo Sabres 3
Edmonton Oilers 4
Carolina Hurricanes 5

The total points standings can be found below, but it is probably no surprise, that the Detroit Red Wings are tops on this list.  The Wings make the playoffs every season and won the Stanley Cup in 2008.  Every organization pines to have the Wings’ consistent contending squads.

Second on the list are the San Jose Sharks and Pittsburgh Penguins.  These teams are interesting in their differences.  The Penguins tanked a little before the lockout and were ready to go with Crosby and company post-lockout.  Two Stanley Cup appearances, including a Cup victory in 2009 have made the Penguins a model organization.  Conversely,  the Sharks have been consistently a playoff team with the talent to make a run at the Cup.  The Sharks have never made it past the conference finals and haven’t been really close to winning in any of those conference finals to begin with.

As a fan, would you prefer a top rated playoff team year-by-year or the off-and-on success of the Carolina Hurricanes (eight points since the lockout)?  Each fan probably has a different opinion but it is those types of debates that sports are all about.

The Flyers are a similar story to the San Jose Sharks, save for their Stanley Cup appearance in 2010.  After Philadelphia, the only team in the top 11 that has not made a Stanley Cup final, aside from San Jose, is the New York Rangers.

In the middle of the list are teams that have either made a lone run deep into the playoffs surrounded by a few first round exits or teams that have lost on a few occasions in the second round like Washington Capitals and Nashville Predators.

On the bottom of the list, the Toronto Maple Leafs amazingly have not even made the playoffs since the lockout.  The Leafs are the only team in the NHL that has been that dreadful.

All in all, the list below presents few surprises but does help to crystallize team success relative to other competition.  The point formula is certainly simplistic and by no means foolproof, but it does help to shape a fan’s view of the successful teams since the NHL became the “New NHL.”

Total Points
Detroit Red Wings

18

San Jose Sharks

14

Pittsburgh Penguins

14

Philadelphia Flyers

13

Anaheim Ducks

12

New Jersey Devils

11

Vancouver Canucks

11

Boston Bruins

11

New York Rangers

10

Chicago Blackhawks

10

Ottawa Senators

9

Montreal Canadiens

8

Carolina Hurricanes

8

Nashville Predators

8

Buffalo Sabres

8

Washington Capitals

8

Los Angeles Kings

7

Dallas Stars

5

Colorado Avalanche

5

Tampa Bay Lightning

5

Phoenix Coyotes

5

Calgary Flames

4

Edmonton Oilers

4

St. Louis Blues

3

Minnesota Wild

2

Florida Panthers

1

Atlanta Thrashers/Winnipeg Jets

1

New York Islanders

1

Columbus Blue Jackets

1

Toronto Maple Leafs

0

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