2017 NHL Regular Season: In-Depth Look at the Best in Hockey This YearPublished November 27, 2017 by Sol FH
We are about a quarter through the NHL Regular Season and it is becoming easier to see who are the teams to beat this year.
If you have been following the NHL this season then you probably know that this game, this year is one of the most exciting of recent years, and the competition is fierce. If you haven’t been watching hockey this season…just do yourself a favor and start now and we won’t hold it against you.
In this section, we will look at the current rankings after about 23 games played by each team.
One of the more interesting divisions in the NHL this year with a ton of activity and surprises. The Tampa Bay Lightning are in charge of the Atlantic with 32 points in 23 games. The Lightning looks like a strong team right now but we must wait until mid-season to know if their health will stay with them.
Right behind the Lightning are one of the surprises of the year in the Toronto Maple Leafs, who are finally on the winning side of the standings. The third-place Detroit Red Wings are in their usual position this season and hopefully, they can stay competitive and hold off the rest of the teams in the Atlantic that are hot on their tail.
The rest of the division is rounded out by the Boston Bruins, Ottawa Senators, Montreal Canadiens, Florida Panthers, and the Buffalo Sabres.
This is the toughest division in the NHL. Agree or not, the current Stanley Cup Champions, the Pittsburgh Penguins are here, along with tough teams like the Washington Capitals, the Columbus Blue Jackets and more.
The biggest surprise this year has been the New Jersey Devils, currently leading the division with 32-points just like the Lightning. The Blue Jackets are in second place just one point off top spot, which has changed between many of the teams in this division during the season. In third place currently are the NY Islanders, currently on a 3-game win streak.
To be clear, it is so early in the season that we can get a sense about which teams will do well, but it only takes one win-streak and literally, any team can be back in the running. The remaining teams, according to standing are Washington Capitals, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, the Carolina Hurricanes, and the Philadelphia Flyers.
The Central Division has arguably the best team in the league this season in the St. Louis Blues. This team currently has 35 points and are in charge of the division, but must continue to win in order to stay in their position. The Winnipeg Jets are back in their hometown which is news to every Canadian from the prairies. The Jets have been one of the most thrilling teams to watch this season and their hard work has paid off to the tune of 31-points for second place.
Just behind the Jets are the Nashville Predators, a team that no one expected to do this well this year. But, they are where they are because of hard work and winning crucial games including going 8-1-1 over their last 10 games.
The rest of the teams battling it out in the Central are the Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, the Minnesota Wild, and then Colorado Avalanche in last place with 24-points.
The all-new expansion team the Las Vegas Golden Knights are well out in front of the rest of the division and they continue to look very strong in their premier year. The Knights have 31-points, are on a 5-game winning streak and do not look like they will be slowing down anytime soon. The LA Kings and the Calgary Flames are in second and third place respectively and either one could make a race for top spot, but expect the Knights to stay strong all year.
To round out the rest of the teams in the Pacific they are as follows: San Jose Sharks, Vancouver Canucks, Anaheim Ducks, Edmonton Oilers, and the Arizona Coyotes.