Could ‘Howson Rule’ cost Columbus the playoffs?


It’s been two months since Scott Howson was fired from his post as Blue Jackets GM.

Yet according to the Columbus Dispatch, his legacy could still affect the team in a major way.

The Jackets, 3-2 OT winners last night against Anaheim to move into eighth in the Western Conference with 49 points, have just 16 wins in regulation/overtime this season.

The teams they’re fighting for eighth with — Detroit (47 points) and Dallas (45) — have 18 and 19, and that’s important because ROWs (regulation plus overtime wins) is the official standings tiebreaker.

It’s also Howson’s brainchild.

Here’s more, from the Dispatch:

An NHL rule change adopted three seasons ago after Howson introduced it to the league’s Board of Governors could end up costing the Blue Jackets a spot in the postseason.

The “Howson Rule” altered the postseason tiebreaking process, making a team’s number of regulation and overtime victories the first tiebreaker.

In other words, shootout victories would be removed from the total.

Adding to the issue is that Columbus has just four games remaining in the regular season, while Detroit has five and Dallas has six.

Trying to catch either team for ROWs will be extremely difficult — so, the Jackets know they have to beat the Wings and Stars on points.

“Obviously, nobody knew we were going to be in this spot a few years ago,” winger Jared Boll told the Dispatch. “We have to be a point better than everybody else.

“That’s just the way it goes.”