Upcoming NHL Season by Ellie Bednarz

Upcoming NHL Season 

By Ellie Bednarz 

The upcoming NHL season is quickly approaching with games beginning in mid-October. Fans around the country are looking forward to seeing all 32 teams ready to compete.  

Here’s a few things that will make the 21-22 season interesting to watch: first thing that will make this season a good one to watch is the addition of the new Seattle Kraken franchise. The Kraken will be competing for the first time this season and has been assigned to the Pacific Division in the Western Conference. The NHL approved the expansion for the new team back in December of 2018. The team’s home stadium is the Climate Pledge Arena in downtown Seattle. One thing fans find exciting about this new expansion team is how successful they are right off the bat. The franchise has been able to draft the new rising stars in the NHL, but they’ve also been able to pick up players that already have experience playing for other teams. Based on the Las Vegas Golden Knights success and being a new team, many people believe the Kraken could be in a similar situation. The franchise has had three years to build and prepare for their debut. The Kraken should be on everyone’s radar this season.  

Another big scenario in the world of NHL is the question of if the Tampa Bay Lightning are able to three-peat. The Lightning have been a force to be reckoned with over the last few years. They’re dominant and able to finish games on the highest level. Quite frankly every Lightning fan should be thanking Steven Yzerman for making them. Redwings’ fans are certainly happy to have Yzerman back in the front office. Last season the Lightning player Nikita Kucherov led the league in assists and points, and teammate Brayden Point led the league in goals. On the defensive side of the puck, goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy lead the league in save percentage. All these stats came from the whole 2020-21 season. Tampa Bay should easily make the playoffs again this season because of their continuation of success. But will the Lightning be able to win yet another Stanley Cup? Many fans think so, but it all depends on what other teams will step up to the challenge to dethrone the champions. 

Last thing that will be crucial for this 21-22 season is finally allowing full capacity to most, if not all professional stadiums. Last season only a select number of fans were allowed into the stadium. It was definitely not loud enough when Tampa Bay won the cup last year. But with the MLB, NFL, NBA, and NCAA allowing their stadiums to be in full capacity, the NHL is looking to benefit from more fans. Many franchises have felt the pain of having decreased sales during games. However, with fans back in full force, franchises will benefit with ticket, food, and merchandise sales.  

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