Points Totals Each team receives two points for a win, one point for an overtime or shootout defeat, and one point for a tie. Ties, on the other hand, were abolished beginning with the 2005-2006 NHL season. "P" or "Pts" denotes total points, whereas "GF" or "F" denotes total goals scored by the squad. The winner of the league is the team that accumulates the most points at the end of the season.
There is no specific formula used to calculate the winner's prize. However, some teams tend to be better than others over time so we can make an estimate based on how much money each team has won thus far. The Colorado Avalanche have been winners twice out of existence while the Tampa Bay Lightning have only been around since 2004 but both clubs have won more than $100 million during their tenure as winners. In comparison, the Washington Capitals have only won more than $100 million once despite having been active in the league for many years previously; they were also one of the original six teams who started the NHL back in 1917.
Each year after the conclusion of the regular season, the top three finishers are awarded with playoff spots, which include a round-robin format to determine final placement. The team with the most points at the end of the series wins the Stanley Cup.
Total number of points Points Totals "P" or "Pts" denotes total points, whereas "GF" or "F" denotes total goals scored by the squad. Goals scored in a shootout are not added to a team's total. A team that wins a shootout receives one additional goal in the game as well as one extra goal in the season total. As an example, if a team scores 15 goals during the regular season and then wins three shootouts during playoffs, that team's overall record would be 30-20-8.
The final score of a game is determined by the winner of each match-up taking into account how many games each team has left to play. If two teams have an equal number of points but one team has more wins, that team will be ranked higher. The same thing applies to losses: if two teams have an equal number of points but one team has more losses, that team will be ranked lower.
In short, the first place team will have more points than the second place team, even if they have the same number of wins or losses. The team with more points is ranked higher; the team with fewer points is ranked lower.
As an example, let's say that during a recent hockey game between the New York Rangers and the Washington Capitals, the Rangers win 3-1.
Under the NHL's current point system, each win gets a club two points in the standings, while an overtime loss receives one point and a regulation loss ends in zero. This format seeks parity and, for the most part, appears to have succeeded. Since the 2001-02 season, no team has gone over.500 during non-playoff years.
There are exceptions to this, of course. In 2007-08, Montreal won its first division title in 16 years but didn't get any bonus points because it had a negative goal differential - the first time that's happened since the system was introduced. The following season, Tampa Bay finished with the best record in the league but lost in the first round of the playoffs because of a lack of points.
The main reason teams don't win more than they lose is because the number of games in the schedule varies from year to year. There are usually between 34 and 38 games per team, but that can go as high as 40 or as low as 32. Sometimes a few big games will be played by some teams and there won't be many others left to compete with; other times all the action comes down to the final week of the season.
Since the start of the 2005-06 season, 30 different teams have made the playoffs. Only five of those have a winning record: Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles and Montreal.