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yave1964

East and West are night and day

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Posted (edited)

Taking a look at the two conferences I am stunned at the overall difference between the East and West. 

 

First, the last three champs have come from the East. My view on the biggest reason in a few. For now, lets look at the have/havenots  in the East.

 

STANLEY CUP CONTENDERS

Penguins ,Capitals ,Lightning, Maple Leafs

 

PLAYOFF LOCKS OR NEAR LOCKS, IF THEY CATCH A BREAK THEY COULD MAKE A RUN

Flyers Jackets, Bruins

 

CONTENDING FOR A PLAYOFF SPOT

Devils, Panthers

 

NOT QUITE READY FOR PRIME TIME

Pretty much everyone else. Rangers, Sabres, Wings, Canadiens, Senators, Hurricanes and Islanders are all afterthoughts.

 

So 7 spots more or less locked up, if the Devils slip maybe one of the others could steal a playoff spot and be first round fodder.

 

Now on to the West

 

STANLEY CUP CONTENDERS

Jets, Knights, Kings, Predators, Sharks, Blues. IMHO any of these six have to be considered serious contenders to come out of the West.

 

PLAYOFF CONTENDERS WHO IF THEY CATCH A BREAK COULD MAKE A RUN

Ducks, Wild, Flames, Stars, Oilers, Avalanche, Six teams fighting for two spots. Essentially 12 teams out West who have a chance at a cup if everything breaks right.

 

NOT QUITE READY FOR PRIME TIME

Canucks, Hawks, Coyotes

 

  So here it is. You can make a case that in the East, one playoff spot is up for grabs with the Panthers and Devils duking it out for the right to be first round fodder for one of the big boys. Four teams clearly above the field. Out West it is a muddle, there will be four very good teams that are sitting at home come April and eight teams facing off against each other in the first round, any of which could beat any of the others. IMHO the top teams are in the East, if I were laying out a power ranking the top four teams in the East would all be in my top five but I wouldn't have another team from the East listed until 12th or 13th tops. 

 The West is deep and dangerous and rugged. The East is top heavy. The Eastern elite can start setting up for the playoffs as soon as now, the Western elite need to watch their back because someone might be gaining on them. I can see no scenario where the Lightning or Leafs are sitting at home in April, with the exception of the Jets and possibly the Predators I can see any of the top twelve teams in the West sitting at home before the playoffs begin or playing at least until the second round. It is an enormous advantage to the top tier teams in the East knowing that they likely wont face each other until the second round. The Jets could draw the playoff experienced Kings, the Sharks could draw the upstart Knights in the frist round. The West will have no easy outs.

  These things come and go but right now the elite teams are nearly all in the East while the West is so deep that it is a coin flip whether or not almost any of the really good teams even make the postseason. It will turn around eventually, these things always do but that is how I see it.

Edited by yave1964

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Posted (edited)

The West is tougher.  The Western teams beat the living hell out of each other, with far worse travel besides.  Beyond the Stanley Cup result, the West has been kicking the **** out of the East in the crossover games for years.  

Edited by CreaseAndAssist
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2 hours ago, CreaseAndAssist said:

The West is tougher.  The Western teams beat the living hell out of each other, with far worse travel besides.  Beyond the Stanley Cup result, the West has been kicking the **** out of the East in the crossover games for years.  

  I would say the West is DEEPER. Even the bad teams out West, Chicago, Vancouver and Arizona have skilled talented players. I still think the cream of the crop is the top four in the East and Winnipeg but after that the next 6, 7 or 8 teams are all Western conference teams IMHO. And you guys don't have any slugs like the Isles, my Wings (sigh), Buffalo, Carolina, Montreal or Ottawa. 

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@CreaseAndAssist

I remember an announcer on THN saying at the end of the Nashville/Winnipeg series that it was the equivalent of a 13 game series, it was simply that grueling. That to me symbolizes Western Conference Hockey right now.

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I'd say the current view of both Conferences is accurately reflected in these posts.

Of course, you guys know as well as I that it all ebbs and flows over time.
When I started following the NHL in the early-mid90's for instance, I believe it was a case of the East being viewed as the Conference with the better teams, deeper divisions, etc.... 
If memory serves, the West then was looked at as "the finesse" Conference while the East harbored the big, grinding teams.

Detroit, at that time seemed to be only real SC contender in the West year in, year out...while the East had several that could contend.
Slowly, the West became the overall dominant Conference, culminating with LA and Chicago trading Cups every year.

Now, I think the time is coming where the East will be viewed as overall the more dominant Conference once again...and around and around we go.

For the here and now, I still say, and it has been true for a few seasons now, THE deepest, toughest overall division in the entire NHL resides in the West....and that is the Central.

The Metro and Atlantic could change that sooner than later, however, making the East the hands down deepest and toughest Conference for the forseeable.

 

The Atlantic in particular.... if the Bolts can maintain their contender status year in, year out (personally, I am hoping Yzerman does with them what his former team did for about 20 years!), the Leafs look like they are set to be an elite team also...Boston hitting and grinding their way to the top...and up n comers like Florida, Buffalo pushing those three... maybe Montreal finally gets their heads out of their Habitans and join the contender party (gotta get rid of Bergevin first!)…. we could be looking at one hell of a division....and I wouldn't be surprised if Detroit sticks their nose in there sooner than later as well...

 

Barring something stupid like another lock out, I see grueling jockeying for dominance in the East almost top to bottom in the near future....

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      Hey, anytime I can take a potshot at a division rival, I'm in.
      If I am funny while I am at it....then bonus!

      Glad you enjoyed!   😋
    • 1
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      The West is tougher.  The Western teams beat the living hell out of each other, with far worse travel besides.  Beyond the Stanley Cup result, the West has been kicking the **** out of the East in the crossover games for years.  
    • 1
      Post
      I'd say the current view of both Conferences is accurately reflected in these posts.

      Of course, you guys know as well as I that it all ebbs and flows over time.
      When I started following the NHL in the early-mid90's for instance, I believe it was a case of the East being viewed as the Conference with the better teams, deeper divisions, etc.... 
      If memory serves, the West then was looked at as "the finesse" Conference while the East harbored the big, grinding teams.

      Detroit, at that time seemed to be only real SC contender in the West year in, year out...while the East had several that could contend.
      Slowly, the West became the overall dominant Conference, culminating with LA and Chicago trading Cups every year.

      Now, I think the time is coming where the East will be viewed as overall the more dominant Conference once again...and around and around we go.

      For the here and now, I still say, and it has been true for a few seasons now, THE deepest, toughest overall division in the entire NHL resides in the West....and that is the Central.

      The Metro and Atlantic could change that sooner than later, however, making the East the hands down deepest and toughest Conference for the forseeable.   The Atlantic in particular.... if the Bolts can maintain their contender status year in, year out (personally, I am hoping Yzerman does with them what his former team did for about 20 years!), the Leafs look like they are set to be an elite team also...Boston hitting and grinding their way to the top...and up n comers like Florida, Buffalo pushing those three... maybe Montreal finally gets their heads out of their Habitans and join the contender party (gotta get rid of Bergevin first!)…. we could be looking at one hell of a division....and I wouldn't be surprised if Detroit sticks their nose in there sooner than later as well...   Barring something stupid like another lock out, I see grueling jockeying for dominance in the East almost top to bottom in the near future....

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