The East is a little more complicated: beyond the fact we know that
It’d be nice for Atlanta to be guaranteed a spot, but considering in their last 18 games they’ve got a goal differential of -13 and a Pythagorean win percentage of 39% and 3 regulation wins in those games I would say Atlanta is a great candidate for falling out and it could happen quickly (Calgary, Ottawa and Carolina are up next). It appears
In the last few weeks
Ottawa has had a strange year so far with such a terrible start they appear to have everything under control in fact their Pythagorean win percentage over the last 17 games is sitting at 73% with 11/17 games won in regulation. They’d need some pretty poor luck to miss the playoffs.
As the only team with a positive goal differential in the South East division they should win the division. Both of the games against
They better make it. I always enjoy watching and cheering for
Based on who’ve they’ve played and won against,
There’s two ways for
NY Islanders [10th]
Of all the teams that shouldn’t make it in, the Islanders might be the team that does. However, they’ve been losing ground since the beginning of the year when they did really well. Over the last 19 games they’ve won 6 in regulation and went to overtime a lot. However they’ve maintained an even goal differential and are pegged to play a bit above average for the rest of the season. I have at 57% chance of making it.
NY Rangers [11th]
The most important thing for the Rangers in the last stretch is that they play the Islanders 4 times, the winner of that series will likely be the one closest to making the playoffs. Too bad for Rangers their record against the Islanders is rather poor this year. I don’t see them making it, but they do have a 50-50 chance statistically speaking.
Basically it’ll work out like [best guess]:
 Buffalo  New Jersey  Tampa Bay  Ottawa  Pittsburg  Carolina  Atlanta  Toronto  Montreal Rangers  New York Inlanders  New York