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Herald staff | aaronlommers@gmail.com
Published: Wednesday, April 10, 2013, 3:37 p.m.

NLL playoff scenarios

Washington Stealth fans can rest easy knowing that their team is in the postseason, but there is still a lot to play for. The Stealth are still alive for a West Division championship or, at the very least, a home playoff game.

With just two weeks to play in the regular season there are many scenarios that can have an effect on the postseason. Rather than try to explain them all myself, the following are the possible scenarios and tie-breakers provided by the NLL on its website.

East Division

Toronto (10-5) has clinched a playoff berth and the East Division regular season title, ensuring home field advantage through the first two playoff rounds. The Rock will host a first-round playoff game at Air Canada Centre on Sunday, April 28 at 3 p.m. ET and can clinch the top overall seed in the NLL, ensuring home field throughout the entire playoffs, with a win over Philadelphia.

Rochester (6-7) can clinch a playoff berth with one win AND a Buffalo loss to Washington. Can clinch first-round home playoff game with two wins OR with one win AND a Buffalo loss to Washington AND a Toronto win over Philadelphia.

Philadelphia (6-8) can clinch a playoff berth with a win over Toronto OR a Buffalo loss to Washington.

Buffalo (5-9) eliminated from playoff contention with a loss to Washington AND one Rochester win.

West Division

Calgary (8-6) has clinched a playoff berth.

Edmonton (8-6) has clinched a playoff berth. Can clinch first-round home playoff game with a win over Rochester AND a Buffalo win over Washington AND a Calgary win over Rochester.

Washington (8-6) has clinched a playoff berth. Can clinch first-round home playoff game with a win over Buffalo AND a Calgary loss to Rochester OR an Edmonton loss to Rochester.

Colorado (6-8) can clinch a playoff berth with a win over Minnesota OR with a Washington win over Buffalo AND one Rochester win.

Minnesota (6-8) can clinch a playoff berth with a win over Colorado AND a Rochester win over Calgary OR a Washington win over Buffalo OR a Edmonton win over Rochester. Can also clinch playoff berth via East crossover with a Washington win over Buffalo OR with a Philadelphia win over Toronto AND a Buffalo win over Washington AND two Rochester losses.

Playoffs Outline

Eight teams will advance to the 2013 Playoffs, which start on the weekend of April 26-28. The crossover rule allows the 5th place team in the West Division to take the place of the 4th place team in the East Division if the 5th place team has a better record.

In the event that the 5th place West team and 4th place East team finish the regular season with identical records, the tiebreakers used for overall seeding will be applied to break to tie and determine which team claims the final playoff berth.

Each division champion faces the fourth place finisher from their division (or the crossover team should that team qualify for the playoffs). The second place finisher in each division faces the third place finisher from their division in the Division Semifinals. Each game is hosted by the higher-seeded team. The winners advance with the higher-seeded teams hosting the Divisional Finals. The winners of the Division Finals meet in the 2013 NLL Championship Game, hosted by the team with the higher overall seeding.

Playoffs Calendar

April 20: Final day of regular season

Weekend of April 26-28: Divisional Semifinals

Weekend of May 3-5: Divisional Finals

Weekend of May 10-12: 2013 NLL Championship Game, presented by Reebok

Divisional Tiebreakers

The following is the tiebreaking procedure for clubs having identical won-lost records at the conclusion of the regular season within their division, to determine the order of finish and seeding within the division:

A) Head-to-head record during the regular season (best won-lost percentage in games between tied clubs).

B) Win-loss percentage against divisional opponents.

C) Win-loss record against common opponents played an equal number of times during the regular season.

D) Goals for/goals (most net points) against in head-to-head matchups.

E) Per-game goal differential (goals for minus goals against, divided by games played) within Division.

F) Total goals for/goals (most net points) against for the regular season.

G) Coin toss.

Note: Only one club advances to the playoffs in any tie-breaking step. Remaining tied clubs revert back to the first step of the tiebreakers. In the case of a three-way tie or greater, once one of the teams wins the tie- breaker, they advance and the tie-breaking procedure is re-applied to the remaining teams.

Overall Seeding Tiebreakers

The following is the tie-breaking procedure for clubs having identical won-lost records at the conclusion of the regular season to determine the Overall Order of Finish and Overall Playoff Seeding:

A) Head-to-head record during the regular season (best won-lost percentage in games between tied clubs).

B) Win-loss record against common opponents played an equal number of games during the regular season.

C) Goals for/goals (most net points) against in head-to-head matchups.

D) Total goals for/goals against (most net points) for the regular season.

E) Coin toss.

Story tags » LacrosseStealth

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