I didn’t make as many structural predictions about the new year as DJS, but I certainly made a lot of predictions about teams.
The Trapezoid: Martin Brodeur is already lobbying to have it removed, and there is a lot of popularity to having it removed. The only changes that are making any difference are the calling of penalties and the 2-line pass. Everything else is meaningless.
Ottawa: You might not remember, but they were widely poo-pooed before the pre-season (especially before the Heatley trade). I put them in the final four, and they are looking strong.
Vancouver: They weren’t picked in a lot of other final fours, but I was in consensus with them being strong.
Tampa Bay: I had them in the middle of the pack, not the top. That’s where they are.
Colorado: Just an average team these days.
Toronto: Good but not elite
I put 6–just 6–teams in the right place so far.
I will say this: there are fewer dominant teams. Detroit is at the top of the standings, but has been on a terrible run of late; they simply aren’t as much better as they used to be. Ottawa has been terrifying, and they are the closest to dominating. Anything can happen on any night. Even Washington can blow you away if Ovechkin gets loose.