Okay, now that FA is (mostly) done and we've seen some trades made since my last predictions i made, i'm going to make an updated version. I will do one more before the season after this one, and that will be right before the start of the season. (Probably October 1st or 2nd).
I'm pretty sure all these point totals could end up happening, but i'm not 100 percent sure if all these can possibly happen together. But i'm just picking random numbers without adding it all up.
1. Tampa Bay Lightning (118 points)
2. Boston Bruins (114 points)
3. Toronto Maple Leafs (110 points)
4. Florida Panthers (100 points)*
5. Montreal Canadiens (84 points)
6. Buffalo Sabres (83 points)
7. Detroit Red Wings (67 points)
8. Ottawa Senators (59 points)
1. Washington Capitals (104 points)
2. Carolina Hurricanes (103 points)
3. New York Rangers (99 points)
4. Philadelphia Flyers (95 points)**
5. Pittsburgh Penguins (94 points)
6. New Jersey Devils (92 points)
7. New York Islanders (90 points)
8. Columbus Blue Jackets (89 points)
1. Nashville Predators (110 points)
2. St. Louis Blues (106 points)
3. Dallas Stars (99 points)
4. Colorado Avalanche (99 points)*
5. Winnipeg Jets (96 points)**
6. Chicago Blackhawks (93 points)
7. Minnesota Wild (77 points)
1. San Jose Sharks (108 points)
2. Calgary Flames (107 points)
3. Arizona Coyotes (97 points)
4. Vegas Golden Knights (94 points)
5. Vancouver Canucks (91 points)
6. Anaheim Ducks (83 points)
7. Edmonton Oilers (70 points)
8. Los Angeles Kings (59 points)
(Ottawa finished last place while tied in points with Kings. Kings win in the tiebreakers.)
I might have Nashville as a bit of a surprise at that point total. I'm not sure how many points most people are picking them to get but i don't think it's quite that much. Maybe I went a little bold but i could see them going back closer to where they were in 2018. They traded Subban but Fabbro is coming in i think and Tolvanen might be, and they got Duchene. I picked 4 teams to make the playoffs who didn't make it in 2019 (NY Rangers, Florida, Philadelphia, and Arizona - Columbus, NY Islanders, Pittsburgh, and Vegas fall out). I didn't really go too bold with these picks other than maybe some of the point totals. I'm not sure what others are picking for the most part but i'm pretty sure i have Dallas and Colorado with less points than most people. I might be totally wrong about that though, maybe lots of people have them with around the same numbers i picked for them. Ottawa just really isn't very good. I think Anaheim will have a decent year and will be better than the Oilers. Edmonton hasn't done anything big to improve their team and they were already pretty bad. They need help up front, on D, and in net. That's what i think. LA is also just a really bad team IMO. They aren't built to win in the NHL. I don't think the Devils are quite there yet. They're close, but not quite there if you ask me. That division has so many good teams. I have the NYR making it because i think they'd improved more than the Devils, but with Taylor Hall back, you never know.
Tampa Bay in 6
Toronto in 7
Florida in 7
NY Rangers in 6
Nashville in 7
St. Louis in 7
San Jose in 6
Calgary in 7
I don't see Tampa Bay getting swept in round 1 again lol. I think they can at least win a round in 2020. Toronto it just seems like has to finally beat Boston. Maybe this is the year? Florida has to finally do something in the playoffs. I don't think they've even won a series since 1996 when they went to the final. And they have a really good team now. I think Lundqvist will help the Rangers to win this series and bring the Rangers to round 2. They've been getting way better in the offseason. Winnipeg keeps the series close against Nashville, but the Predators bounce back from this year to make it to round 2. Dallas just hasn't matched up well against St. Louis recently, and i think St. Louis wins that one for the 3rd time in 5 years. San Jose is still a very good team, and with the Labanc signing that likely means more cap room for Thornton and Marleau. I think Arizona comes close to beating Calgary, but Calgary is just the better team IMO. I'm picking the Flames in this one.
Tampa Bay in 5
Florida in 6
Nashville in 7
San Jose in 7
I think Toronto finally wins a series, but Tampa Bay will be too good for them IMO. I don't like making this prediction as a Rangers fan, but i think Florida beats the Rangers. It seems like it's their time for a long playoff run. I don't see St. Louis repeating. I think Nashville bounces back from this past year. Calgary i think wins a round in 2020, but San Jose's experience will be too much for them IMO.
Florida in 7
San Jose in 6
Tampa Bay, in my opinion, will do what they always do in the playoffs; lose at some point. That would be a great rivalry, and i think the Panthers win this one. It's always been Tampa Bay who's done better as a franchise than the Panthers, but I think the Panthers with coach Q behind the bench will show the Lightning that they aren't the only team in Florida (lol). Sergei Bobrovsky destroys the Lightning again. I think it's a close series, but the Panthers win in the end. It seems like San Jose needs to make the finals, especially if they sign Thornton and Marleau. Nashville just won't be able to get it done IMO, going up against a team who just can't seem to be able to win a cup, but the time is now for the Sharks.
Stanley Cup Final
This should be interesting. Neither of these teams have ever won a cup. Will the experience of the Sharks beat the Panthers? Or will the Panthers and their fans (yes, i said their fans, they would have lots of fans by then probably) be celebrating with the Stanley Cup? Win or lose, the Panthers will probably sell out their games in the final, believe it or not. But at this point it's not about ticket sales. These teams will want the cup.
San Jose in 6
Stanley Cup Champions: San Jose Sharks