The Penguins have had some wild swings this season with winning and losing streaks. Seven to 10 days ago, though, you should have felt pretty good where the Penguins were trending and stood in the East. They’ve had the look of not being a significant Stanley Cup Contender, but a formidable club that might be benefiting from the Eastern Conference as a whole playing an even more wide open style this season than past years. While, Pittsburgh might get exposed against some younger legs, the less coached up Eastern Conference has benefited Pittsburgh’s aging core that is wired to play a run and gun style.

However, winless in their last five games, the wild swings through the first half of the season are starting to put the Penguins into a precarious position. Last season there were eight clear playoff teams and no other threats. That is not the case this season.

In what seems to have come out of nowhere over the last week, the Penguins went from boasting the 4th or 5th best points percentage in the East for much of December, to now the eighth best points percentage prior to Wednesday night’s NHL action.

  1. Boston – .838%
  2. Carolina – .737%
  3. Toronto – .697%
  4. Tampa Bay – .681%
  5. New Jersey – .662%
  6. NYR – .615%
  7. Washington – .600%
  8. Pittsburgh – .595%
  9. NYI – 590%
  10. Detroit – .557%
  11. Buffalo – .556%

Last season Pittsburgh (103 pts, .628%) and Washington (100 pts, .610%) were theoretically the final two playoff teams if you go by points%. The gap between the Capitals and the Islanders (9th most points in the East in 2021-2022) was 16 points.