The ECAC Tiebreakers

© 2008-2012, Joe Schlobotnik (archives)

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One of the things that makes the ECAC playoff race so much fun is the intricacies of the tiebreaker system. The league publishes a summary of the tiebreakers on its website, but they don't spell out the fine print (in particular how to handle the dreadedawesome infinite loop). So here is a full explanation of the tiebreaking procedure, as it was last communicated to the public.

Basic Tiebreakers

These are applied when two teams finish the season with the same number of points (2*wins + ties) in conference games (non-conference and tournament games against other ECAC teams don't count). They are also the basis for breaking ties among three or more teams (see below)

  1. Head-to-head record
  2. Total wins
  3. Record (points per game) vs top 4
  4. Record (points per game) vs top 8
  5. Head-to-head goals
  6. Net goals vs top 4
  7. Net goals vs top 8
  8. Coin flip

Note that the second tiebreaker. "total wins", was added in 2007-2008, and that everywhere else, "record" is in terms of points without distinguishing between two ties and a win + a loss.


See Also

Last Modified: 2012 February 5

Joe Schlobotnik /

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