*Warning: drowsiness-inducing numbers talk is about to take place*
In Thursday's preview, I talked about the Avalanche's magic number with Calgary as being 17; any combination of 17 points by the Avalanche or 17 available points missed by the Flames would guarantee that the Flames can't pass the Avs in the standings. It's calculated by taking the maximum number of points that the other team can attain this year and figuring how many points the Avalanche need to get to reach that level. Technically, 17 points just assures the Avs from tying the Flames, but I'm ignoring tiebreakers for now (since wins is the first one). If you want to be a stickler, add 1 to each number.
Today, I've calculated the magic number for all the teams. I'm including teams above the Avalanche in the standings, as they Avs can technically still catch each of them. And I'm including the Oilers because I know Derek Zona from Copper & Blue will be reading at some point today. But, really, this really just boils down to the Avs clinching a playoff spot. Once the magic number for 6 more teams drops to zero, the Avalanche are in (again, with the tiebreaker disclaimer above applying).
Standings were grabbed before the start of play last night. So, with the Wild's loss last night to Nashville, the Avs' magic number against Minnesota drops to 12.