2014-2015 NHL Prediction Column

The NHL season kicks off tonight, and it’s time for the ultimate column: The Prediction Column. I’ve pretty much picked who’s making the Playoffs or not in previous posts, but now I reveal my seeding, and who barely makes it in.  This is a pretty short column, by the way. Warning: It may surprise you.

Western Conference

1. Chicago Blackhawks

2. Anaheim Ducks

3. Los Angeles Kings

4. San Jose Sharks

5. Colorado Avalanche

6. Dallas Stars

7. St. Louis Blues

8. Minnesota Wild

9. Phoenix Coyotes

10. Winnipeg Jets

11. Vancouver Canucks

12. Nashville Predators

13. Calgary Flames

14. Edmonton Oilers

I love this Chicago team.  They have so much talent it’s ridiculous.  I think they get the top seed, but in this conference, nothing is a sure bet.  Anaheim, the winner last year, will second the Blackhawks.  Another very talented and experienced team, they could overtake the Hawks.  I think the Sharks will rise this year.  They are super loaded, and I would be very confused if they didn’t have a good season.  The reigning champs will have a better record and seeding, but the Playoffs are a different story.  The Kings play great defense, which will take you along way in the West.  I feel like I’m putting them right where they should be.  I really like the Stars this year, and maybe a little to much.  Having them over the Blues concerns me, but hey, if it happens, it’s in print.

The Avalanche will slip a bit, mostly due to inexperience and the loaded conference factor.  I’m not going to touch on the Wild, since I wrote about them yesterday.  Even though I’m from Phoenix, I’m not a Coyotes fan, and I’m still being a homer for them.  They finished here last year, and it’s going to happen again.  Injuries always kill them, like Detroit, and it will be tough call for Playoffs.

The Winnipeg Jets could be this year’s big sleeper.  They could completely fall apart, or get a low seed in the West.  If they played in the East, it would be a easier task.  I’m taking the half-empty side to them, but won’t be surprised if they rise.

Already wrote about the bad teams…

 

Eastern Conference

1. Montreal Canadians

2. New York Rangers

3. Pittsburgh Penguins

4. Boston Bruins

5. Washington Capitals

6. Philadelphia Flyers

7. Detroit Red Wings

8. Tampa Bay Lighting

9. Toronto Maple Leafs

10. Columbus Blue Jackets

11. Carolina Hurricanes

12. New York Islanders

13. New Jersey Devils

14. Florida Panthers

15. Ottawa Senators

16. Buffalo Sabers

Yup, you that read that right.  The Canadians are the best team in the East, and P.K. Subban is one the league’s best players.  I love this team.  If there is one team that is a certain bet in this conference, it’s them.

My Rangers will get the runner-up.  This is way higher than last year, and it does have somewhat to do with the Cup appearance.  The Rangers didn’t have Martin St. Louis for the most the season last year, and that will be a massive difference.

Now, I’m somewhat regretting not putting Boston at three, but the Penguins are super experienced and talented hockey team, which earns them the third seed.  This will be a dog fight all year, and I really don’t know who will take it.

I put the Capitals at five, due to a reason like the Pens.  They are experienced.  It is so big in hockey to have expirence.  The Caps have one the better players in the league, and if he can stay healthy, they’re in good shape.  I shouldn’t have to name him.

The six, seven and eight seeds are kind of a crapshoot.  I put them in best team order, because I’m not sure what each of these teams are really going to do.  The safest bet is Tampa Bay at eight, and the reason is in the column linked up at the top.  I like Detroit, but again, injuries always derail them.

Toronto is the only team in the East that could go either way.  I don’t have them in Playoffs, but it is certainly possible.  Columbus is interesting also, but their just not built well, and really, last year they got lucky.

Well, there you go.  Have fun tonight, as we drop a new season of hockey.

 

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