Official 2018 - 2019 NHL Thread

dillyhammer

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Half way through November, some early observations....

Looking at the eastern conference, some stunning developments. Buffalo is tied for 3rd in the conference and 3rd in their division. If the playoffs started today, Washington Carolina Philadelphia and Pittsburgh go golfing. Pittsburgh, BTW, is 1-7-1 in their last 9 and dead last in the east less than 2 years removed from back to back cup wins. I predict a shakeup in Pittsburgh real quick. They're still built to win, so I don't think there's much appetite for a rebuild there just yet.

Some reality checks going on in the west too.

Vegas, the 2017-18 Cinderella story, second to last in the west, just a hair above LA and only 2 notches below the lowly Blackhawks. Edmonton still toiling away near in the basement too. There's 4 teams surprisingly outside the playoff bubble. St. Louis is stumbling around in the basement as well, I thought they'd be doing better this year.

Of the 6 Canadian teams, Ottawa is the only team currently not in playoff contention.
 

HiVolt

Junior Member
Staff member
Yeah Buffalo & Montreal are surprising as well... They were supposed to be bottom feeders. I'm surprised how bad the Pens have been. The Atlantic division seems to have the best performing teams, with the point spread being really close.
 

dillyhammer

Administrator
Staff member
Buffalo could be the story this year. Nothing to lose, written off... it's amazing what happens when the pressure is off and you start playing pond hockey for fun. I don't know what to make of Pittsburgh. Their core is still intact, it's like they've just forgotten how to win. If they lads don't turn things around by Christmas there may be some lineup casualties.
 

HiVolt

Junior Member
Staff member
Maybe the core just cannot carry the team anymore... Crosby, Malkin, Letang, are all pushing 31+, and with the amount of regular season + playoff games they've played, its may very well be that they've passed their prime... Still good players, but not great.

Quite the dropoff though, back to back cups 2 years ago, and 100 point team last year. scraping the bottom this year, but its still barely 20 games into the season.
 

HiVolt

Junior Member
Staff member
Gritty win vs Blue Jackets, down 0-2 after the 1st period, 2-2 after two and the Leafs win 4-2.

Finally a winning record at home.
 

dillyhammer

Administrator
Staff member
Matthews without the non-contact jersey at the morning skate too.
Hopefully another week or so will do the trick.
If he returns in form, and with the Marner Tavares line red hot, things look good.
First in the east at the moment.

:)
 

HiVolt

Junior Member
Staff member
Also the St.Louis coach fired, Mike Yeo. Not really sure what to think about that guy as he's never been a high profile coach.
 

dillyhammer

Administrator
Staff member
Man those Sabres are lighting it up.
It's amazing what happens to a team when the expectations are low and they start playing shinny - #3 in league standings.
Toronto has always had a tough time beating them, specially in Buffalo.
I expect that'll continue this year.
It's be nice to see them do some damage in the playoffs this season.
 

HiVolt

Junior Member
Staff member
Yeah, they finally lost last night. Its turning into a young man's game again, but the cap is hurting teams with these young players coming out of entrylevel wanting big bucks.
 

dillyhammer

Administrator
Staff member
Chicago... what a fall from grace, those guys. They're 1-9-0 in their last 10 and current streak is 7 losses. They're 12 points out of the last wildcard spot. I would suggest they tank the season and hope for some draft lottery luck. Nothing else seems to be working.... wow....
 

dillyhammer

Administrator
Staff member
Shame that the outdoor game today is between 2 storied original six clubs that are both currently outside the playoff picture. I'm sure when the opponents were set for this game the league had no idea both would be struggling so mightily at the half way point of the season. Boston just slipped below the wildcard spots and Chicago has been sitting on that cold basement floor for quite some time.

I'm hoping both teams get riled up for this one.

Hoping for a Toronto/Montreal outdoor game in the future. Any reason why they couldn't have it at Olympic Stadium?

And in other news.... Canada got handed a huge loss last night. I think it'll be a bit of a struggle for them to medal now.
 

dillyhammer

Administrator
Staff member
Down to the final four.
Hoping for a Carolina / St. Louis final. More because I hate Boston than anything else.

To add to the frump that the 3pm game on Easter Sunday caused, the NHL decided a 3pm game on Mother's Day would do the trick.
 

HiVolt

Junior Member
Staff member
Bruins leading 3-0 and can possibly sweep tonight... It really pains me to see, how relatively easily they had after they beat the Leafs...
 

dillyhammer

Administrator
Staff member
Man, the Bruins are tenacious. As much as I hate them, they look prepared for another cup.
Carolina. What a run man. They just plain run out of steam.

Hoping the Blues prevail. That's a final I'd watch. San Jose not so much.
 
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