When SBNation’s NHL FanPulse (remember, if you haven’t signed up yet you can do so here) debuted in mid-October, the first questions asked were which teams would miss the playoffs among the 16 participants from last season. It was no surprise that the Columbus Blue Jackets were the most popular pick (each respondent got to make two selections:
The question was asked again in January, as the Jackets were in the midst of a major hot streak:
Thank you, Sharks, for taking the heat off of us. Now, still nearly half of the voters felt that the Jackets were not going to make it. At that point, they were still stuck in sixth place in the Metro despite the point streak.
Last week, the question was asked for the final time this season. The Jackets are still the second most popular pick, but this time only 33% think they are most likely to miss the playoffs.
As the cling to a playoff spot despite all the injuries, do you think the Jackets have what it takes to make the playoffs?
At the end of February, Jackets fans were asked if they were confident in the direction of the team. The number has dropped 7% from the unanimous support in the first poll, but still 93% of Columbus voters remain confident.
Finally, here are the results of the OTHER national question last week, which is what teams that missed the playoffs last year will make it in. If you look at the current standings, this is a pretty easy decision, I think: