NHL Pacific Division Preview 2021-22

by Scott Rickenbach

Pacific 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. 

Anaheim Ducks – 63 points last year. Predicting a range of uppers 60s to low 70s this season. Horrible power play last season. Ridiculously bad. Special teams important to winning hockey games and Anaheim has issues on the power play and now concern at goalie with back-up Ryan Miller retiring.
  
Calgary Flames – 81 points last year. Predicting a range of upper 80s to low 90s this season. Should be better this season but coach Sutter has to get more out of this group. The core group could be dismantled if Calgary again falls short but this team has enough talent to do more than they have shown. They just need to be more consistent and cohesive as a group.
 
Edmonton Oilers – 105 points last year. Predicting a range of around the century mark this season. The Oilers are so strong with their top line but now the pieces they have added for additional support could help take this team to the next level. It is far from a sure thing but if Edmonton’s new additions fit in well this team could really surprise near the top this season. 

Los Angeles Kings – 72 points last year. Predicting a range of upper 70s to low 80s this season. Trying to rebuild with impressive young talent and could be on their way. We’ll see some  improvement this season but this team still another year away at least. 

San Jose Sharks – 72 points last year. Predicting a range of low to mid 80s this season. Sharks could be better this season simply with better goaltending. But this is still not a team that will be near the top. They will be fortunate to land in the middle of the pack but I think they have finally made some moves in the right direction with what they have done at the goalie spot at least. 

Seattle Kraken – This is inaugural season but just like Golden Knights of 2018, this is not a normal expansion team situation and I am predicting a range of upper 80s to low 90s. This team has a ton of talent and did so well in the expansion draft. Just really a stockpile of scorers plus the goaltending has potential to be a fantastic tandem as well. This Seattle team will immediately be one of the better teams in the division most likely. 

Vancouver Canucks – 73 points last year. Predicting a range of mid to upper 80s this season. This team has talent and coach Green got his two year extension and guys are buying into things here. The Canucks will improve this season. This team was impacted a lot by covid last season, among other distractions. Let us not forget they had a .565 save percentage the season before. They can get back into the range again and I think they will this year. So they are flying under the radar a bit coming in. Keep that in mind.  

Vegas Golden Knights – 120 points last year. Predicting a range of upper 90s to low 100s. Still trying to put another run together but have lost some of the players that helped mold an identity in Vegas. That cohesive group they had when they first came into the league and swept the hearts of Vegas fans is a bit of a memory now. Still a very good team no doubt but this could be a bit of a transitional year for the Golden Knights. They will still be a very good team but I think they might be further away from the Cup now than they were before! That is what I mean by a transitional year. 

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

© 2021 Al McMordie's BigAl.com. All Rights Reserved.