CAPS NHL

COMPLETELY UNBIASED NHL Pre-Season Predictions

I know, I know. I’m a little late to getting this blog out. But better late than never. If you’ve been listening to the pod, Coach Bill, KP, and myself have been previewing each division in the NHL and making our playoff predictions. After even further research, I have made some changes in some of my predictions from what I had on the pod. I won’t go through every single team here, just gonna give you who I think makes the playoffs and how the playoffs will pan out.

Image result for nhl pacific division

We’ll start out West with the Pacific division. This division is fairly weak compared to the rest of the NHL. However, I do have some surprise picks coming out of this division. The Vegas Golden Knights and Calgary Flames are for the most part bringing back the same teams as they had last year. I think they’ll both be right back to what they brought last year. The Yotes were riddled with injuries last year but stayed in the playoff hunt for most of the season. The San Jose Sharks lost a major piece of their core in Joe Pavelski. And the Oilers hire a great coach in Dave Tippet which could be a step in the right direction for Edmonton. My playoff teams from the pacific:

  1. VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS

2. CALGARY FLAMES

3. ARIZONA COYOTES

WC. Edmonton Oilers

Image result for nhl central division

We make our way to an extremely tough division in the Central filled with what could be some juggernaut teams. MacKinnon and Rantanen have turned the Avs into one of the funnest teams to watch in the show a long with some significant pieces they’ve added and a very young defensive core. The Nashville Predators look like they have one of the best teams on paper now with the addition of Matt Duchene. Obviously the St. Louis Blues aren’t bad (they won a very large cup last year). The Winnipeg Jets are always a tough team to play. And the Dallas Stars made some great low-risk high-reward additions to their team as they were one of the best defensive teams in the NHL. Not to mention the Chicago Blackhawks are also in the division, sure they’ve had a couple rough seasons but with Kane and Toews on your team you’re never out of the picture. But who makes it in? I got…

  1. NASHVILLE PREDATORS

2. COLORADO AVALANCHE

3. ST. LOUIS BLUES

WC. DALLAS STARS

Image result for nhl atlantic division

Heading east we have the Atlantic division. Another great division with some super teams that have legit shots at winning the Cup this year. Tampa Bay had a historic season only to get swept in the first round. You know they’ll be pissed off at the entire league and will be back in the mix. The Toronto Maple Leafs finally locked up their guy Mitch Marner and will certainly be one of the silkiest teams in the league. The Bruins are back with their same core guys and will be tough against any team. The Florida Panthers have made some huge additions on the ice and off the ice with Coach Q running the bench and Bobrovsky in their net. The Canadians were a surprise last year and battled all the way until the end of the season for a playoff spot only to miss by 4 points. My Atlantic rankings:

  1. TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING

2. TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS

3. BOSTON BRUINS

WC. FLORIDA PANTHERS

Image result for nhl metropolitan division

Lastly, we make our way into the Metro where the Caps have dominated for the past 4 years in the regular season. They’ll be fighting for a top seed in this division as they always do. The Penguins will also be fighting for a similar spot and Malkin will be playing with a chip on his shoulder after his performance last year. They also added Galchenyuk who could have a break out season this year with the Pens. The Flyers had quite the offseason on the bench and on the ice as well. They added Kevin Hayes and stacked their defensive lineup as well. They’ll have a serious shot at the top 3 as long as their goaltending shapes up to be what he’s supposed to be. Carolina was THE surprise team last year as they made a great playoff run. The Devils made some big moves over the offseason and won the lottery with a little luck. The Rags also made some big moves to help speed up their rebuild this offseason. This will be a very tight division this year and the Wild Card race will be insane at the end of the year. I’ve got…

  1. WASHINGTON CAPITALS

2. PHILADELPHIA FLYERS

3. PITTSBURGH PENGUINS

WC. NEW JERSEY DEVILS

Welp there you have it. There are my playoff teams for the 2019-2020 NHL season. And I can almost guarantee you I will be incredibly wrong. This season is probably one of the tightest seasons I’ve seen in my 20 years of watching hockey. There are about 23 teams that all have legitimate shots at making the playoffs this year and with this tough playoff format, the Wild Card race is gonna be filled with teams fighting and clawing to get into the playoffs. CANT WAIT

Image result for cant wait gif

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