The NHL’s best and worst teams
The National Hockey League (NHL) is composed of 30 teams, 24 of which are based in the United States and the other six in Canada. The league is divided into two conferences, the Eastern Conference and the Western Conference Each conference is further divided into three divisions.
In the 2019-2020 Season the Tampa Bay Lightning won the Stanley Cup defeating the Dallas Stars in the finals. The Lightning finished first in their division with a record of 62-16-4, earning 128 points. The second best team in the NHL was the Boston Bruins who finished first in their division with a record of 56-19-7, earning 119 points.
The Worst Team in the NHL this past season was the Detroit Red Wings who finished last in their division with a record of 17-49-5, earning 39 points. The second worst team was the Ottawa Senators, who finished last in their division with a record of 25-33-12, earning 62 points.
The NHL’s biggest winners and losers
There are a few teams in the NHL that always seem to be at the top of the standings, while others can’t seem to get out of the basement. Here’s a look at the NHL’s biggest winners and losers over the past few seasons.
The biggest winner of the past few seasons has been the Chicago Blackhawks They’ve won three Stanley Cups in six seasons, and they look like they could be poised for more success in the future. The Los Angeles Kings have also been one of the league’s top teams winning two Stanley Cups in three seasons.
At the other end of the spectrum are teams like the Buffalo Sabres and Arizona Coyotes, who have consistently been near the bottom of the standings. The Sabres haven’t made the playoffs in six years, while the Coyotes haven’t made it since 2012.
The NHL’s most surprising teams
This season, a number of NHL Teams have surprised fans and pundits alike with their strong starts. In the Eastern Conference the Buffalo Sabres and the Florida Panthers are both off to red-hot begins, while the Montreal Canadiens continue to lead the way in the West. Here’s a closer look at some of the most surprising teams in the NHL this season.
The Buffalo Sabres were widely expected to struggle this season after losing star forward Jack Eichel to injury in training camp However, the team has rallied around backup goaltender Carter Hutton and currently sits atop the East Division with a 9-2-1 record. Hutton has been outstanding in net, posting a .947 save percentage and 1.60 goals-against average through 12 games. The Sabres will need him to continue his strong play if they want to stay in contention for a playoff spot.
The Florida Panthers have also exceed expectations so far this season, thanks in large part to stellar goaltending from Sergei Bobrovsky. Bobrovsky has been one of the best goalies in the league this season, posting a .932 save percentage and 2.01 goals-against average through 11 games. The Panthers offense has also been clicking, as they rank fourth in the NHL in goals per game (3.45). If they can keep up their strong play, they should be a force to be reckoned with in the East Division race.
In the West Division, it’s been the Montreal Canadiens who have emerged as one of the biggest surprises early on. The Canadiens were not expected to contend for a playoff spot this season after missing out last year, but they currently sit atop the division with a 9-3-2 record. They’ve been led by goalie Carey Price, who has been outstanding between the pipes with a .936 save percentage and 2.17 goals-against average through 14 games. If Price can keep up his strong play, andthe rest ofthe team can chipin offensively,the Canadiens could be dangerous come playoff time.
The NHL’s most disappointing teams
As the NHL season resumes after the all-star break let’s take a look at which teams have been the most disappointment thus far. At the top of the list are the Anaheim Ducks who were Stanley Cup contenders last year but have failed to live up to expectations this season. The Dallas Stars and Colorado Avalanche are also among the league’s most disappointing teams.
The NHL’s biggest overachievers and underachievers
In any given season, there are a few teams that exceed expectations and a few that fall short. Here’s a look at the NHL’s biggest overachievers and underachievers so far this season.
1. Winnipeg Jets – The Jets were expected to be a middle-of-the-pack team, but they’ve been one of the best teams in the league all season. They’re currently in first place in the Central Division with a record of 32-13-2.
2. Vegas Golden Knights – The Golden Knights were an expansion team last season, and they stunned everyone by making it all the way to the Stanley Cup Final. This season, they’ve picked up right where they left off, currently leading the Western Conference with a record of 33-11-4.
3. New Jersey Devils – The Devils are another team that has exceeded expectations this season. After missing the playoffs last year, they’re currently in second place in the Metropolitan Division with a record of 27-14-7.
1. Anaheim Ducks – The Ducks were expected to be one of the best teams in the league this season, but they’ve struggled mightily and are currently in last place in the Pacific Division with a record of 21-21-9.
3. Pittsburgh Penguins – The Penguins are still one of the best teams in the league, but they’ve struggled at times this season and are currently third in the Metropolitan Division with a record of 27-17-5.
The NHL’s most improved and regressed teams
The Blue Jackets have made significant strides under new Head Coach John Tortorella, who has instilled a more disciplined defensive system. As a result, the team has allowed the fewest goals per game in the NHL.
The Devils, on the other hand, have struggled mightily under first-year head coach John Hynes. The team has been plagued by inconsistency and has been outscored by a wide margin. Hynes will need to make some adjustments if he hopes to turn things around in New Jersey.
The NHL’s best and worst offseason moves
The NHL offseason is always full of activity, with teams looking to improve their rosters through Free agency and trades. But not all moves are created equal, and some teams definitely improved their chances of winning next season more than others. Here’s a look at the best and worst Offseason Moves among NHL teams
The best moves
1. The Tampa Bay Lightning made a big splash by signing free agent Steven Stamkos to a eight-year, $68 million contract extension Stamkos is one of the NHL’s best goalscorers, and he should help the Lightning challenge for the Stanley Cup title again next season.
2. The Nashville Predators also improved their Stanley Cup chances by signing free agent defenseman P.K. Subban to a two-year, $25 million contract Subban is a game-changer on the blue line and he should help the Predators take another step forward next season.
3. The Chicago Blackhawks made a great trade when they acquired forward Andrew Shaw from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for two second-Round Draft picks. Shaw is a gritty player who will add some much-needed toughness to the Blackhawks’ lineup.
The worst moves
1. The Dallas Stars made a head-scratching move when they signed goaltender Antti Niemi to a three-year, $10 million contract extension. Niemi was one of the worst goaltenders in the NHL last season, and it’s hard to see him turning things around at age 34.
2. The Pittsburgh Penguins made a risky move when they traded forward Ryan Reaves to the Vegas Golden Knights for goalie Marc-Andre Fleury. Reaves is a fan favorite in Pittsburgh, and Fleury could end up being exposed in the expansion draft next summer if he doesn’t have a good season with the Penguins this year.
The NHL’s best and worst coaching changes
The National Hockey League has seen a lot of coaching changes this season. Some teams have benefited from the switch, while others have struggled. Here’s a look at the NHL’s best and worst coaching changes so far this season.
The best coaching change has been with the Los Angeles Kings. The Kings started the season slowly under John Stevens, but they have turned things around under new Head Coach Willie Desjardins. The Kings are currently in playoff position and are one of the hottest teams in the NHL.
The worst coaching change has been with the Ottawa Senators. The Senators fired Head coach Guy Boucher mid-season and replaced him with Marc Crawford. The team has not improved under Crawford and is currently last in the League Standings
The NHL’s best and worst player transactions
In any sport, the best way to improve your team is to make wise trades and signings. In the NHL, there have been many great transaction over the years that have resulted in Stanley Cup wins. On the other hand, there have also been many bad trades and signings that have set teams back. Here are some of the best and worst transactions in NHL history
1. The Pittsburgh Penguins trade Mark Recchi to the Philadelphia Flyers for future considerations
2. The Los Angeles Kings sign Ilya Kovalchuk to a seven-year contract
3. The Boston Bruins trade Tyler Seguin to the Dallas Stars for Loui Eriksson
4. The Detroit Red Wings sign Zetterberg and Datsyuk to long-term contracts
5. The Tampa Bay Lightning trade for Cory Conacher
1. The Edmonton Oilers trade Wayne Gretzky to the Los Angeles Kings
2. The Nashville Predators trade Filip Forsberg to the Washington Capitals
3. The Colorado Avalanche sign Valeri Nichushkin to a two-year contract
4. The Chicago Blackhawks trade Phil Esposito to the New York Rangers
5 Bobby Orr signs with the Chicago Blackhawks
The NHL’s best and worst teams in the standings
The NHL’s best and worst teams in the standings are no surprise. The Tampa Bay Lightning Nashville Predators and Boston Bruins are at the top of the standings, while the Colorado Avalanche, Detroit Red Wings and Arizona Coyotes are at the bottom.
The Lightning are the defending Stanley Cup champions and they have the best record in the NHL. The Predators have been one of the best teams in the league for several years now, while the Bruins are a perennial powerhouse.
The Avalanche, Red Wings and Coyotes are all rebuilding and they are not expected to contend for a playoff spot.