As each new season approaches, I look to see which teams might benefit from the way their previous season ended. I factor in off-season acquisitions and try to extrapolate what those players can mean to a team's fortunes in the upcoming campaign. With that forecast in mind, I offer up four scenarios that are fuel for a debate: Which matters more: preceding playoff performance or new personnel?
Let's first consider the Stanley Cup champion Detroit Red Wings.
Is it more important to this season that they went the distance last spring or that they added
What about the team that the Red Wings' defeated in the Western Conference Final? The Dallas Stars finally made an inspired playoff run after years of dominating during the regular season only to fall flat come the postseason. Does that experience shape them for success this season more so than the addition of free agent superpest
For the Stars, positive playoff performance is of greater value than what Avery brings to the mix. Not that he won't be helpful. Avery's agitator bent and all- around game should mesh nicely in Big D -- if placing
In the east, what about the Washington Capitals and the Boston Bruins? The Caps replaced goaltender
The Capitals can take heart and confidence from a run that saw them battle hard and prevail in must-win situations on the road just to make the playoffs. Huet was stellar, but the group accomplishment goes far beyond the goalie. Theodore just has to provide a confident and hungry team with the same level of netminding he gave the Colorado Avalanche down the stretch in March. If he does, the Caps should advance even further than they did so stunningly just four months ago.
And then we have the Bruins. GM
Sure, the positive experience garnered last season by
So, have at it. As you look to predict your team's potential for success and who might be good fantasy pool picks, don't forget to rank personnel additions and carryover capacity as elements of your analysis. The result may change your overall perspective.