The puck is almost ready to drop on the latest NHL season and the EA SPORTS NHL team is keeping its tradition of simulating the upcoming season.
There are a lot of interesting storylines that could unfold over the next eight to ten months. Will the Los Angeles Kings repeat? Can Sidney Crosby bring another cup back to Pittsburgh? How many Canadian teams make the playoffs? Who will win the year-end awards?
Check out how we think the season will unfold.
After winning the President Trophy last year, the Boston Bruins continued to be the beasts of the East, finishing in the number one spot with 103 points. The Capitals couldn’t overcome an Ovechkin injury and finished in twelfth place. Meanwhile, the Red Wings record of 23 straight years of making the playoffs finally snapped.
The Metropolitan Division proved to be very competitive, as no team was able to break away from the pack throughout the season. In the end, Sidney Crosby managed to lead Penguins to a first place finish. Crosby once again won the scoring title and took home the majority of individual awards – but Claude Giroux wasn’t far behind as he put up career high numbers with 100 points.
The Toronto Maple Leafs snuck into the final wildcard spot to make the playoffs, but once again were handed the tough task of facing their rival Bruins in the first round. The up-and-coming Panthers showed some growth, improving from 66 points to 78, but still ended up missing the playoffs.
The Chicago Blackhawks finished the year as the top team in the NHL with 106 points, thanks in large part to a stellar campaign from Patrick Kane who notched 95 points. The Calgary Flames finished last overall and will have the best odds to pick first overall and decide between elite prospects Connor McDavid and Jake Eichel.
The Vancouver Canucks were just able to beat out Arizona for the last wildcard spot to make the playoffs. The two teams from Alberta once again finished at the bottom of the division.
The Blackhawks, Blues, and Avs make up the toughest division in hockey. Despite adding Thomas Vanek and getting a 92 point season from Zach Parise, the Minnesota Wild were unable to make the playoffs.
The Kings once again showed their poise as they won two game sevens en-route to the Stanley Cup Final. In the Final, the Kings proved to be too much for the Bruins beating them in Game 6, hoisting their third Stanley Cup in four years, and putting themselves into the history books as an NHL dynasty.