I just wanted to make a short post here to correct an inconsistency in what I’ve reported over the past few days about Maine’s bonus points. The Black Bears indeed will have bonus points tacked onto their RPI for two road wins at North Dakota, but Maine’s season opening win against Minnesota will not accrue bonus points for this bubble team.
The win over Minnesota came at the Hall of Fame Game on October 6. The game was played at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, not Minnesota’s home rink, Mariucci Arena in Minneapolis.
This year’s criteria stipulates that teams earn bonus points only for quality road wins, and, despite the fact that the Xcel Energy Center was likely filled with 15,000-plus screaming Minnesota fans that evening, the game technically was at a neutral site. Thus Maine won’t be earning any bonus points for that win.
It is a strange loophole in the criteria certainly. The whole point of bonus points is to reward a team that goes into a hostile road environment and earns a victory. No doubt, what Maine accomplished fell into that class of win but because the game wasn’t played at Minnesota’s actual home facility, it’s treated the same as if the Black Bears beat the Gophers in Orono.
All of that said, the crack programming team at USCHO.com was far ahead of yours truly and had the mathematical formulas for the PairWise Rankings programmed correctly. Thus, all of the scenarios I have drawn up over the past few days that show Maine a strong favorite to still make the NCAA field are still correct.
We’re only a few days away before the final games play themselves out and the NCAA field is set. The discussion on these blog posts has been excellent and I look foward to continuing to read your thoughts!