2014--15 NHL POWER RANKINGS

It's never too soon to look at next year's Cup faves
June 23, 2014

1

[Chicago Blackhawks]

Nearly everyone returns, led by Jonathan Toews and a maturing Patrick Kane, and their hunger for another title will keep them focused.

2

[Los Angeles Kings]

They are poised to be the first cap-era dynasty. Just six players are over 30 and two of them (Marian Gaborik and Willie Mitchell) are UFAs.

3

[Boston Bruins]

They have the D to win. The offense (3.15 goals per game) is by committee, and winger Jarome Iginla (30 goals) may leave.

4

[St. Louis Blues]

The pieces are in place for another run. The Alex Pietrangelo--led defense is one of the best, but they could use a sniper up front.

5

[Anaheim Ducks]

Teemu Selanne retired; a few others will likely depart, leaving cap room for a second-line center (Ryan Kesler?) and a veteran D-man.

6

[San Jose Sharks]

They're retrenching. Centers Joe Pavelski and Logan Couture must become the leaders. They have the depth and skill to challenge.

7

[Pittsburgh Penguins]

Centers Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin anchor the middle. After that, only five forwards and five D-men are under contract.

8

[Dallas Stars]

Center Tyler Seguin and forward Jamie Benn led them to the playoffs. A second-line center and a puck-moving D-man will move them up.

9

[New York Rangers]

GM Glen Sather faces some cap-related challenges, with five restricted free agents and seven unrestricted, led by defenseman Anton Stralman.

10

[Colorado Avalanche]

Great young forwards, but the defense gave up 32.7 shots per game, 25th in the NHL, making goalie Semyon Varlamov's life difficult.

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