The Hurricanes will sit Second in the Metro Going into 2020
The Carolina Hurricanes are sitting in the second wildcard spot behind The Penguins, Flyers, Islanders, and Capitals. They are sitting comfortably in that spot ahead of the Montreal Canadiens by five points. There seems to be no threat from anyone in the Atlantic or from the three basement teams in the Metro, Devils, Rangers, and Blue Jackets, to usurp that playoff spot.
By why settle for another wildcard spot? While the Capitals are well ahead of everyone by at least nine points, (12 ahead of Carolina), that doesn’t mean that Carolina is down for the count to getting into an automatic playoff spot before the end of the calendar year. In fact they are only three points behind the New York Islanders who hold the second spot.
Now granted the Islanders have two games in hand on both the Hurricanes and the Capitals. But they haven’t looked very strong as of late. Their goaltending is starting to crack and the defense can only carry this team so far. That opens up an opportunity for the Carolina Hurricanes who have ten games left in the year.
What makes this the boldest of all predictions is that of those ten games, only three are at home. In fact of those ten games, half will be played in Canada. And only four will be against teams not currently in a playoff spot all in the final five of the year. Who knows where they will stand in the standings by then. But Carolina has a secret, they play better against good teams.
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In fact only three of their losses have come against teams currently in playoff spots. Two against the same team, the Philadelphia Flyers, and the third against Boston earlier this month. No, that is not a mistake, I had to go back and double and triple check my math. The Carolina Hurricanes prefer to play better teams. That means these next ten games will be a breeze.
That also means that they will more likely than not feast on the 20 available points and even go as far as finishing 2019 with at least 50 points which would put them around halfway to where they need to be at the end of the season to get in. December has not been a good month to the Carolina Hurricanes in the past, but there is no reason to let the past dictate the future.
Question for CC Readers: What are your bold predictions for the end of the year?