Top to Bottom: Checking in with each team two months into the season

Cam Lewis
December 07 2015 02:58PM

We're two months into the NHL season! The Jets and Lightning are underachieving because of issues on special teams, it seems like an AHL team could compete for a playoff spot in the Pacific Division, and the Dallas Stars are scoring like a team straight out of the 1980s. Let's look up and down the league at our legitimate contenders, bubble teams, and write-offs. 

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Are the Edmonton Oilers actually this bad?

Cam Lewis
December 05 2015 07:49PM

The article Mike Brophy wrote for the Hockey News recently got me thinking about the Oilers and whether they’re actually as bad as their record suggests. He essentially said that it's absurd how bad the Oilers are after drafting first overall four times in the past six years, and that the league should do something to ensure that teams aren’t constantly rewarded for their ineptitude. He also talked about a coach named Scott McLellan and the Columbus Blue Jackets selecting Erik Johnson first overall in 2006, but that’s beside the point. 

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The Roundup

Nation World HQ
December 04 2015 06:45AM

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The Maple Leafs are boring and we can prove it, Virtanen should go to World Juniors not McCann, Byfuglien for Hamonic a no go, what's wrong with Sean Monahan, Oilers leading odds to win the 2016 draft lottery, a look at the 10 different types of hockey fans, a great scrap, fantasy hockey and more in this week's Nation Roundup brought to you by DraftKings.

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Future Free Agent Profiles: Jamie Benn

Cam Lewis
December 03 2015 04:11PM

It’s time for the Dallas Stars to start thinking about Jamie Benn’s next contract. The Stars’ captain and last year’s Art Ross Trophy winner is in the fourth year of a five-year deal signed back at the beginning of the 2013 lockout season, and if he makes his way onto the free agent market come July 2017 he’ll certainly be one of, if not the most coveted pieces available. 

Benn is in the midst of another star season in Dallas. He’s leading the league in goals with 18, and he sits second in points behind only Patrick Kane with 35. If he continues at this pace, he’ll finish the year with 115 points, which would not only shatter his own career high, but also represent the best individual season we’ve seen in terms of production since Sidney Crosby scored 125 back in 2006-07. 

So yeah, I think it’s fair to say that Jamie Benn has easily established himself as one of the league’s best forwards at this point in his career. So what does that mean for the Dallas Stars? And what should we expect from his next contract? He's going to be getting an upgrade on his $5.25 million annual salary, that's for sure. 

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Future Free Agent Profiles: David Perron

Cam Lewis
December 02 2015 01:36PM

David Perron is really the only key player the Pittsburgh Penguins have hitting unrestricted free agency this summer. That said, they’re already pressed right up against the cap, and while Perron is the only notable UFA (unless you consider Ben Lovejoy and Matt Cullen to be key players) they’re going to need to sign Olli Maatta to a new contract, as his entry-level deal is set to come to an end and they're going to need to do something about the tire fire they have on their blue line. The Pens currently have nine forwards, four defencemen, and one goalie signed from their current active roster heading into next season at a combined cap hit of roughly $60 million. They’ll likely be able to fill some holes internally, but that doesn’t give them very much room to flesh out and improve their roster. 

So what type on contract can we expect for David Perron on the open market?

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