The NHL Network has ranked quite a bit lately and to no one’s surprise, the Blackhawks didn’t land on either. For how the team is constructed, it shouldn’t be breaking news by any means. But it is interesting to see how other teams rank out since it grades out a bit for contenders and pretenders.
— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) August 20, 2023
Of the names on defensemen, five are in the Central Division, with three landing in the top five. It’s nearly a 50-50 split of teams but it’s the Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche, Vegas Golden Knights, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Carolina Hurricanes who see multiple entires. It’s like the Buffalo Sabres join them with multiple entries next season.
The real bullet point: all five in the last five seasons have been considered contenders or been crowned champions.
The rankings, of course, are subjective and there’s an argument that can be made for others to be on the list, especially near the end.
But with Kyle Davidson’s blueprint that has deepened Chicago down the middle and on the blue line, it shows that the focus is certainly where teams who have been successful have their strength.
Blackhawks In Case You Missed It
- If William Nylander is going to be traded, it’s likely not until the 2024 offseason as the Maple Leafs need him and his scoring touch to compete for a Cup. But if they do deal him, would the Blackhawks be a prime team to acquire his services?
- The Blackhawks Notebook listens as Don Cherry talks Jonathan Toews
Rest of the Hockey Now Network
Detroit: Two of Petr Klima’s sons share their memories of the late Detroit Red Wings forward
Florida: Speaking of defensemen making the NHL Network Top 20, the Florida Panthers saw an entry as well.
Los Angeles: Three concerns heading into the Los Angeles Kings season
Montreal: Grading out Montreal Canadiens GM Kent Hughes’ trades last season
Philadelphia: First round pick Oliver Bonk inks an entry-level deal with the Philadelphia Flyers
Pittsburgh: The Pittsburgh Penguins Top 5 Prospects see a few new ones at the heap
San Jose: A notable analyst believes the San Jose Sharks have the right pieces to enjoy a formidable power play