NHL Week in Review (Off-Season)

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The NHL season is over and for the second year in a row, the same team is sitting on top of the league as the Pittsburgh Penguins are once again champions.

It is a unique off-season ahead this year as there hasn’t been a back-to-back champion in the league since 1998.

It will only add to what is already setting up to be a unique off-season for the league where things are going to be shaken up.

The off-season will begin officially when the Vegas Golden Knights officially announce their roster for the new season.

It has been a year in the making as the NHL is the first team to officially place a professional team in the city of Las Vegas.

It has been a city that scares some of the biggest leagues of which all have been wary of turning towards legitimising sports betting.

In the city that makes its living by gambling, including sports, the prospect of a professional team in the city seemed scary to some of them.

Not only that but the fact that the city itself is not the most populated city or active city and that most of their revenue comes from tourists scared leagues for years.

The NHL will take that step next year when the brand new T-Mobile Arena hosts the first NHL game of the hometown Golden Knights.

Since the announcement of the new team, the work has mainly been done on creating a front office and hiring from the president down to the coach.

There have been few signing for the team with only two players officially a part of the team come the end of the season.

Now the off-season begins and the Knights will take more focus as they kick-off of the off-season with the expansion draft.

The protection lists are in and the team will continue to go over them to find the best team possible for the next season.

What will be more interesting in terms of the off-season is what the effect of that extra team will be to the other teams in the league.

Certain players are going to be headed to Las Vegas and that is going to leave gaps for many of the other teams in the league.hockey-sidebar

It is sure to have some effect on the rest of the off-season as the trade market could be more active than usual and the free agent market is going to be something else.

Every team will be looking to try to fill the holes left behind by the expansion draft in trading and signing free agents.

The introduction of a new team is going to send reverberations throughout the league and they will be seen in the off-season.

Expected a lot of movement through the off-season as teams look to adjust to the fact that there will be 31 teams this year.

As teams approach the beginning of a new off-season the real work begins attempting to build a team that can unseat the Penguins.

It is going to be tougher as there is a lot of work in some of the players that are available in expansion.

That work will head to Vegas where they look to guide a new team to success early but for the teams that put in the work, they get no return.

That means a team that believes they are on their way to competing might need to rethink their strategy.

They could lose some players they believe to be key players for their future and instead might need to look to the free agent market for help.

That in itself will make the off-season one to watch this year and along with an increased salary cap for teams, there is sure to be debate.

That debate will come when teams overpay for players to fill the spots as there is more money to spend and more desperation to fill spots that have been left open.

Get ready for a good lead-up to the new season as there will be plenty to talk about and debate every month.

It will be with the new roster fill out by the Vegas Golden Knights that is sure to be watched over closely until their first game.

There is also the talk about the players that were not protected that have to then return to their teams wondering about their value to the team.

Of course, the signings and trades along with the draft will all be talked about as teams sign and pay for new players that they will need.

It will be a busy time as teams start their preparations for a new season where things might get even more interesting.

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