After an off-season of trades and free-agent signings, the NHL shapes up for a wild and wide open battle on the ice for the 2019 Stanley Cup.
1. Tampa Bay - If they stay healthy, the Lightning is primed for one more title run.
2. San Jose - Adding Erik Karlsson to an already strong roster should pay huge dividends for the Sharks, especially if they get off to a fast start.
3. Washington - Defending champs will contend with the NHL’s best come playoff time.
4. Pittsburgh - A well-rested Crosby and Malkin will mean trouble for most teams this season.
5. Winnipeg - A team designed to grow this season behind Patrik Laine and a solid supporting cast.
6. Toronto - Tons of talent, but will they perform consistently night-in and night-out?
7. Boston - The Bruins may have the league’s best top line.
8. Nashville - No reason to doubt this President Trophy Team.
9. Vegas - Will the Golden Knights regress, or will adding Max Pacioretty continue to make their games the hottest ticket in the NHL?
10. Florida - Veteran Roberto Luongo and Mike Hoffman will lead the team to the playoffs.
11. Los Angeles
16. St. Louis
24. New Jersey
25. New York Rangers
26. New York Islanders
Good luck to your favorite team!
Stanley Cup finals prediction:
There’s a parade in San Jose, as the Sharks defeat the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Enjoy the NHL season!