The Afternoon Shift – April 1

Calculating a magic number shouldn't be this hard...

We’ve talked a lot – probably too much – lately about points, winning percentages, permutations and the Griffins’ playoff possibilities. So it’s time to let someone else do it, through an intriguing web site that calculates the chances of teams from a variety of sports and leagues to make the postseason.

Sports Club Stats, created by Ken Roberts of Raleigh, N.C., is a stat geek’s dream and a math-phobic fan’s nightmare all wrapped into one. As explained on the site’s home page, it sheds light on a team’s odds of making the playoffs, how today’s games impact those odds, and how well they need to finish the season to have a shot.

In short, the site digests standings and schedule data, simulates results for all remaining games thousands of times, then presents its odds in a way that is, dare we say it, fun and relatively easy to comprehend. We can’t understand much less vouch for the methodology and algorithms used, but we found it interesting to wade through the numbers to gauge the site’s take on the Griffins’ playoff chances, as well as those of other AHL and NHL clubs.

First, the bad news: if the results are to be trusted, the Griffins currently have a 6.1% chance of making the playoffs. The good news is those odds jump to at least 43% if they reach 90 points (5-1 or 4-0-2), 78% if they finish with 91 points (5-0-1), and 96% if they can run the table over their final six games.

Forget all this, though, and just remember two numbers, 96.1 and 9:45: the radio frequency and broadcast time of the Griffins’ crucial first step tonight in Abbotsford. Be sure to tune into Bob Kaser and ESPN for all the action.

Today’s Griffins links:

AHL/opponent links:

Alumni news and notes:

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