We are now a month in to the NHL season and it has been a bit of a wild ride.
The Stanley Cup Champions, the Boston Bruins, are currently last in the Eastern Conference after 11 games; 11 games is what most teams have played so far in the regular season in the East. The Winnipeg Jets are struggling, following the path of the Atlanta Thrashers, even after a new coach, building, and management. The team however is still the Thrashers in the majority.
A surprise in the top 8 so far in the East is the fact that the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ottawa Senators, and Florida Panthers seem to be turning things around from last season. It is still early days yet, however so far they are making a strong push to shake up the Eastern Conference.
The Western Conference is not without its surprises, with the Edmonton Oilers, Colorado Avalanches, and Minnesota Wild making life tough for the teams in the West. A surprise drop is the Detroit Red Wings, however they tend to push hard for the Playoffs late in the season.
Watching games, the Phoenix Coyotes may not be in the top 8 in the West, however they aren’t far from getting inside, tied with 8th place San Jose Sharks. The Coyotes’ game style and play show much more potential, with the speed and accuracy that looks like they will be a contendor for the Playoffs in April.
Joe Thornton has upset the New York Rangers through comments stating that they are the softest team they have played against when they lost in MSG after a 5 game winning streak; the Calgary Flames hope November is better for their offense; losing Mike Green is not so great for the Washington Capitals; Sean Avery may be back after clearing re-entry waivers with the New York Rangers, much to the upset of clubs I’m sure; and there still is no return date for Sidney Crosby.
Stay tuned as we move into the second month of the 2011-2012 season, and teams settle into playing after the off-season. We will be bringing more updates regularly, articles on the New Jersey Devils team (of course, as they are my team), and hopefully some guest writers about some other teams. We will still be trying to get hockey jerseys cheap for those of us in Australia, there are plans that just need to get in motion, and have some design ideas for T-shirts, so we can express just how mad we are for puck!
Catch you all soon on the other side of the faceoff!