Last season the number eight seeds for the Western Conference and Eastern Conference, the Minnesota Wild and New York Islanders, finished with a winning percentage of .573. In the Dallas Stars’ 20 years of existence, they have failed to achieve a winning percentage of .573 only seven times.
Unfortunately, four of those were in the last five seasons. More unfortunate for Dallas is that reaching .573 percent doesn’t always guarantee that you will make the playoffs, such as they experienced in the 2010-11 season. Dallas is anticipating reaching the successes that they had around of the turn of the century. These successes are also correlated to successful win percentages among those years.
This graph shows the win percentage of the Dallas Stars throughout the regular seasons since 1993, plus three lines through it.
The middle orange line is set at .573 (the mark where the last two teams made the playoffs last season). The upper-blue dashed line is the average win percentage for the Dallas Stars in the regular season throughout their 20 years of existence.
The lower-blue dashed line is where the concern lines. This marks the average win percentage for the past five seasons. A mere .533 win percentage since the 2008-09 season. This is .040 below the mark set to theoretically make the playoffs. This may sound pretty bad, however, that is the difference of only winning roughly 4 more games each season.
Did the Stars set themselves up for success?
If we’re going off this simple analysis, will everything Dallas did this offseason allow them to win four more games next season in order to make it into the playoffs after failing to make the playoffs in the past five seasons? What about for the next five seasons?
The Dallas Stars organization is sure hoping that the hiring of a new head coach, new GM, and the acquisitions of new prospects and veterans (via the draft, free agency, and trades) will have made the difference needed to win a few more games and clinch a playoff spot.
This would also mark the first time that the Stars make the playoffs under the starting goaltending of Kari Lehtonen.
Although making the playoffs doesn’t guarantee a trip to a conference final, nor does it guarantee a trip to the Stanley Cup Final; recent successes like the eighth-seed L.A. Kings winning the Stanley Cup demonstrate to teams that once you make the playoffs it really is anyone’s game.
The Dallas Stars are 14-11 in playoff series’ (56 percent).
Follow me on Twitter @JordanWalkerAKL
Stay up to date on off-season information by filling out the contact field below.