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Like with the opening weeks of every season, some teams are red hot and some haven’t even got out of the starting blocks yet. The likes of the Toronto maple Leaf’s are absolutely flying and yet some preseason playoff candidates are stumbling out of the gate. Here are five clubs that need to get their act together after the opening weeks of the season:
After longtime defenseman Andrei Markov and veteran scorer Alexander Radulov retired after man years with the “Canadiens” everyone knew this season would be a defining one.
Early in the off season the “Canadien” management were hit with this news, so it wasn’t like this story came out of the blue. They had time to re-act, but if their early season form is anything to go by, they didn’t prepare enough.
A 1-3-1 start has been as bad, if not worse, than it sounds thanks to Montreal’s inability to find the back of the net.
By the looks of things there’s not much on the bench that indicates a turnaround is on the cards. The Canadiens are only averaging less than two goals per game and its clear that Carey Price isn’t himself either.
The need a turnaround in fortunes and they need it quick or their season could soon turn into a runaway freight train.
Out of all teams that are suffering from early season blues, the Oilers have had the most disconcerting start.
Injuries have taken their toll and that’s partly because their star duo of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, whose partnership led to a lot of pre-season Stanley Cup hype are now on the treatment table with no confirmed date of their return to action. When you see that frontline,
Oilers need to be scoring but they aren’t. Troubles lie ahead for Edmonton as they try to turn around their season after a shocking 1-4 start.
New York Rangers
The Rangers are really missing the influence of Stepan his absence from New York’s lineup has forced Alain Vigneault to tweak their offensive line. New York are a mess at the back and have the unhealthy habit of giving away more goals than they are scoring.
A record of 1-5 has greeted them at the start of the season and they need answers now. T
heir underachieving offseason acquisition, Kevin Shattenkirk, has been a disaster. How can they turn this around?
AV is a very good coach and if anybody can turn around these fortunes, he can. However, Rangers fans have grown restless and many want him gone. There is trouble brewing at Madison Square Gardens
The pick of the bunch has to be the Arizona Coyotes. T
heir 0-5-1 start already makes them an easy choice for worst in the league, and they’re in a division that’s loaded with either overachieving playoff hopefuls or preseason Cup favorites who are bound to keep improving. However, their pre-season activities give the impression that are bound for greater things and are a team with a lot of ambition.
The acquisition of Derek Stepan and Niklas Hjalmarsson made everyone aware of their intentions for better things. Rick Tocchet, the head coach of the Coyotes, has enough experience and talent at his disposal to turn things around, but can he get the best out of this confidence lacking side?
Only time will tell, but will he be given the time he requires or will the board grow impatient?
A quick look at the Ducks’ record and you could be forgiven thinking that it’s not that bad, but for a team that have been winning division titles and have often featured in the headlines for the right reason, it seems the Ducks are in turmoil.
A 3-1 loss to the Buffalo Sabres was a real kick in the teeth. They have a serious problem in front of goal and need to sort out their discipline problem immediately. However, the best thing the Ducks have done all year is killing those penalties.
The goal is to stay afloat in the division but they face stiff competition from the Calgary Flames and the comeback kings that are the Los Angeles Kings.