Be sure to check out Alex B. Smith’s entire NHL Season Point Totals Report. It’s available here for only $59. Below are two selections that just missed the cut but worthy of a wager.
Colorado Avalanche UNDER 88.5 Points
The Patrick Roy experiment is finally over as the head coach left the club in early August. He left former teammate and GM Joe Sakic to scramble for a new hire. Sakic brought in Jared Bednar who was the bench boss for Colorado’s farm club in Cleveland that won the Calder Cup. Bednar’s fellow Lake Erie assistant Nolan Pratt will be also around as the pair already appears to be clicking well with the wealth of young talent the Avs possess. However, this squad’s defensive issues and shaky goaltending tandem of Semyon Varlamov and Calvin Pickard will make it extremely tough to top the .500 mark. I project a similar output to last year’s 82 points as the Avalanche should battle Winnipeg for the Central Division cellar.
Carolina Hurricanes OVER 80.5 Points
Once again, the books are undervaluing the "Cardiac 'Canes", who played 47 games decided by one goal last season. While their 20-9-16 record won't translate over into realistic hopes of reaching the playoffs, those overtime and shootout losses matter when talking season point totals. Outside of a tough six-game cross-country road trip to open the season, Carolina doesn't have a road stretch longer than three games until late March. The additions of Bryan Bickell, Teuvo Teravainen and Lee Stempniak will boost an offense that finished in the bottom five of the league in goals per game. Note that only three teams in the league finished last season with less than 76 points. We’ve seen this point total played up; a move I strongly agree with.