NHL Power Rankings and Predictions

SAN JOSE, CA - JUNE 04: Sidney Crosby
SAN JOSE, CA - JUNE 04: Sidney Crosby /
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How does each NHL team look heading into the 2016-17 season?

Congratulations hockey fans, you’ve made it through another offseason. The 2016-17 NHL season is finally near. Here’s how each team looks going into the 2016-17 season as each team looks to win the Stanley Cup.

This is going to be a very tough season for the Blue Jackets. Columbus finished with the fourth-worst record in the NHL last season and didn’t improve much during the offseason. Pierre-Luc Dubois probably isn’t ready for the big show yet, leaving the Blue Jackets without a viable number one center. The worst part? They have very little cap space, meaning that it will be hard for them to make trades involving roster players.

Every other team in the Metropolitan Division either improved or are bringing back virtually the same roster that they had last season. Columbus finished eight points behind the Devils. With Taylor Hall, it’s hard to see the Devils as anything but a better team this season. Carolina is finally adding skill to their roster, so it’s hard to see them being worse either. That leaves Columbus at the bottom of a very deep division.

Seth Jones and Ryan Murphy form a decent top pairing. But there isn’t too much else to be excited about on the Blue Jackets’ defense. Jack Johnson is quickly declining. David Savard is decent but he’s asked to do way too much. Zach Werenski is worth getting excited about, but he’s going to have a bit of a learning curve. Throwing him into the fire likely isn’t the best plan, but the Blue Jackets don’t have any better options.

Even if Nick Foligno is able to bounce back, Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella is driving the team the wrong way. Honestly, the best thing possible for the Blue Jackets is that they finish in last place. Maybe that gets Tortorella fired.