It’s the last power rankings of the season! It’s been a thrill covering the Swedish league and we hope you’ve enjoyed this time with us. Going into the last weekend it has come down to three teams, and if you’ve been paying attention you know who they are – Uppsala 86ers, Ale Brewers and Eskilstuna Sharks – all on a collision course for the up and coming play-offs.
While it’s no guarantee that all three teams make it, most likely this game weekend will be used to sort out who’s tagging along for the ride. Moreover, this game weekend marks the start of the women’s division, with a Saturday and Sunday event in Nässjö, which has us excited. But without any further ado, we give you the final power rankings of the year.
7. Norrköping Monarchs (0-4)
Game week 3 opponents: Uppsala 86ers & Nässjö Saints
Going into the last game weekend The Monarchs have nothing to lose. 0-4 on the season with no games being competitive for the full duration. Last year’s developmental league champions have a slim squad and have been overwhelmed in the premier division.
Starting this game weekend of against reigning 5-time champions Uppsala 86ers isn’t going to help. Although the team did find some offensive momentum when Niklas Snäll overtook the QB duties last game weekend, going up against what essentially is the national team will cause problems. We don’t see them actually managing to win a game this year, but what goes down must one day come back up – that’s the saying right?
6. Carlberg Cavaliers (1-3)
Game week 3 opponents: Göteborg Marvels & Ale Brewers
The Cavaliers comfortably beat the Monarchs last game weekend, putting up what we in the business call a 50-burger! However, they were overmatched in the game against the Saints. Determining Carlberg’s actual quality is difficult in a sense, because they occupy a space with no real peer.
Having said all of that, the Marvels pose an interesting matchup. The Marvels form versus the 86ers showed a team poised for big things, however, the showing against the Brewers and Saints tell an entirely different story. Perhaps these teams are what the other has been looking for in terms of an equal foe.
5. Göteborg Marvels (1-3), –
Game week 3 opponents: Eskilstuna Sharks & Carlberg Cavaliers
Göteborg Marvels is heading into this weekend with an outside shot at making it into the playoffs. The tie-breaker system in Sweden is head-to-head record, and without boring you with all the scenarios, there is a very real chance that we’ll have The Sharks, Marvels and Saints all sitting at 3-3, going 1-1 against the others in that threesome.
The next level of tie-breaker is points differential in the head-to-heads. Marvels had a disappointing outing versus the Saints losing 38-21, however, the point’s differential was only -17. The Saints lost to the Sharks earning a -32 differential and a total -15 differential. Which means that a 3+ point win for the Marvels versus the Sharks would mean that the Saints miss the playoffs, assuming the victory margin becomes less than 47 points. With all of that processed, we still believe the Sharks will win and that the Marvels season ends this weekend.
4. Nässjö Saints (2-2), -1
Game week 3 opponents: Uppsala 86ers & Norrköping Monarchs
The Saints have it all in their own hands. If they go 2-0 on the day, they are guaranteed a spot in the playoffs. However, they’re going up against the juggernaut 86ers. Early reports out of the 86ers camp is that key players could be out for this weekend, most notably national team QB and Flagging New Year MVP, Philip Smith, and national team ace and last year’s league MVP, Erik Lagerström.
We wouldn’t put it past the Saints to use the circumstances to upset the favourite. Even with a loss against the 86ers, we’re betting that the Saints can beat a Monarchs team on their last legs, on their own home field. Ending the season with a 3-3 record does potentially mean that you do miss the playoffs, however, knowing that the Marvels would have to beat the Sharks, in Eskilstuna, should put a few minds at ease in Nässjö.
3. Eskilstuna Sharks (3-1), +1
Game week 3 opponents: Göteborg Marvels & Ale Brewers
The Sharks have an all Gothenburg affair the last game weekend. One win is all it takes and the Sharks will be headed into the playoffs. However, a playoff spot isn’t something they should take for granted. If the Marvels and Brewers show up with full squads, the Sharks could very well see themselves 0-2 on the day.
Having home field will be key, it should allow for a larger availability among their players. Although no crowds are allowed in attendance, Eskilstuna has a proven track record of creating great atmosphere simply by using it’s bench players. Something which is also helped by home field. Having a look at the games we’ll stick with our pre-season picks of 86ers, Brewers, Sharks and Saints in the playoffs.
2. Ale Brewers (3-1), -1
Game week 3 opponents: Carlberg Cavaliers & Eskilstuna Sharks
The Brewers are sitting nicely at second in the standings and second in our power rankings. Unless something insane happens, the team should slot into the playoffs without much difficulty. The Brewers continue to be beholden to the slim squad and the players that show up on game day. If they have a full team we expect them to challenge Uppsala.
If they don’t they could struggle against the middle part of the pack. We’ll put them at number two, as we assume when it matters they’ll be there.
1. Uppsala 86ers (4-0), +1
Game week 3 opponents: Norrköping Monarchs & Nässjö Saints
The 86ers are back on top. They would argue that they’d never deserved to be dropped, and we’ll concede that point. The reigning champions are coming into the weekend as the only team having clinched a spot in the playoffs. All that remains is grabbing the top seed in the regular season for an unprecedented 6th time in a row.
News out of the 86ers camp is that they’ll most likely be missing key players. Having a roster full of national team players should alleviate some those issues and we can’t predict anything but a smooth 2-0 on the weekend for the champs.