NHL Atlantic Division Preview 2021-22

by Scott Rickenbach

Atlantic Division 2021-22 Point Total Predictions

With last season being just 56 games, the first point total listed is the number of points the team earned in the standings last season but extrapolated over a normal 82 game season. Then the second total listed is my prediction range for this season. 

Boston Bruins – 107 points last year. Predicting a range of upper 90s to low 100s this season. Just such a consistent franchise for many seasons now. This team is built so well. Very strong top line many consider the best in the game but the 2nd line will be the key this season because David Krejci not coming back. That means Charlie Coyle will have to try to fill that spot. 

Buffalo Sabres – 54 points last year. Predicting a range of mid to uppers 60s this season. This will be Don Granato’s first full season as head coach of the Sabres. Should be improvement here as a result but how will they get over the Jack Eichel situation? Should see marked improvement this season but of course Buffalo still has a long way to go.  

Detroit Red Wings – 70 points last year. Predicting a range of upper 60s to low 70s this season. The youth rebuild continues. The Red Wings are starting to make some positive steps after being patient with the youth rebuild. That continues this season and Detroit is still a year away from post-season contention but at least they are no longer a doormat for the rest of the league. Losing Jacob Vrana to shoulder surgery right before the season hurts this team. 

Florida Panthers – 116 points last year. Predicting a range of mid to upper 90s this season. The Panthers surprised with how strong of a season they had last year but their goalie situation is a concern as Sergei Bobrovsky can run hot and cold and that includes from season to season. This team has to drop down some this season in my opinion after overachieving a bit last season. 

Montreal Canadiens – 86 points last year. Predicting a range of mid to upper 80s this season. Keep in mind the Canadian teams all played together in the North Division last year due to the pandemic. I think that helped some of the teams like the Habs who are now back in a division battling with the likes of Florida and Tampa Bay and Boston plus Toronto comes back to Atlantic from the North as well. That is why, though Canadiens still look solid for this season, I can not predict anything more than staying about level on with last season’s point production.

Ottawa Senators – 75 points last year. Predicting a range of low to mid 70s this season. Like Montreal, now playing in a tougher division. Like Florida, goalie concerns with Matt Murray being the guy. Ottawa will have to battle hard just to have a season that is level on with last season’s production. Like Buffalo and Detroit, this is another team that will not threaten the playoffs this season but is trying to rebuild slowly. 

Tampa Bay Lightning – 110 points last year. Predicting a range of low to mid 100s this season. Lost some good players so could drop a little but it is the systems in place here that make this team so strong each and every season in recent years. Strong coaching and a lot of talent coming up through the minors, this team is build way to be strong each and every season and will battle Boston for the top spot in division in my opinion. 

Toronto Maple Leafs – 113 points last year. Predicting a range of upper 90s to low 100s this season. Maple Leafs did benefit some from a North Division last season which they were a part of but now instead of beating up on Calgary and Vancouver they are back in Atlantic Division with the likes of Boston and Tampa Bay plus a Florida team off a big season. It is only natural to expect the Leafs to regress some as a result and plus their goaltending is a concern as they got more than was expected from that position last season. 

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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