It is time for a 2019 NHL October update. Our 2019 NHL October update sees surprises and disappointments. Below we will analyze what has gone down during the first month of the season.
The Buffalo Sabres have struggled since their last playoff appearance, which came in 2010-2011. The Sabres finished that season with 43 wins but lost to the Philadelphia Flyers in the first round. Buffalo took the Flyers to a game seven but came up on the wrong end, losing 5-2. Since then, the Sabres best record came the following year when they won 39 games. The road back to success has been long for Buffalo but they are finally reaping the rewards of rebuilding. The Sabres enter the final week of October with a record of 9-2-1. They are led in scoring by Jack Eichel ( https://www.nhl.com/player/jack-eichel-8478403 ) with 16 total points. Goalie Carter Hutton ( https://www.nhl.com/player/carter-hutton-8475622) has registered six wins while saving 92 percent of shots taken against him. The season is still young, but the Sabres have established themselves as the potential third team in the Atlantic Division.
The Edmonton Oilers have been the bottom dweller of the NHL since losing in the 2006 Stanley Cup Finals. The Hurricanes won the Stanley Cup that year, defeating the Oilers in seven games. Edmonton has made the playoffs only once since then. It came in the 2016-2017 season, when they won 47 games. That win total is the most the Oilers have had since 1987. Edmonton won their opening round series against the San Jose Sharks. The Oilers season came to an end in the second round of the Western Conference playoffs. Edmonton lost to the Anaheim Ducks in seven games.
As we begin the final week of October, the Oilers have a record of 8-3-1. Leon Draisaitl ( https://www.nhl.com/player/leon-draisaitl-8477934 ) leads the team with 21 total points. Mikko Koskinen ( https://www.nhl.com/player/mikko-koskinen-8475156) is the main goalie for Edmonton this year. He has registered five wins with a 92.2 save percentage. The Oilers are the sentimental favorite to do well each season. 1993 was the last time Canada hoisted a Stanley Cup. Edmonton would love to be the Canadian team that ends the drought in 2019.
Rest of NHL
Some teams that have gotten off to slow starts include the Tampa Bay Lightning and Pittsburgh Penguins. These two teams always seem to be in playoff contention year after year. They still have time to adjust and hit their stride before April. Keep an eye out for these two teams in the Eastern Conference as we progress towards the playoffs. On the contrary, the Florida Panthers and the Arizona Coyotes are sitting in playoff positioning after month one. These two teams have struggled recently missing the playoffs year in and year out. Hats off to these players and coaches for starting 2019 on the right foot. Only time will tell if they can keep it up. If the Panthers and Coyotes can win their inter-divisional games, they set themselves up to make the playoffs come April. Let us see how these two underdog teams perform throughout the season.
The NHL season is still young and there are a lot of games to be played. The standings now may not be what we see in two months or three months from now. It will be interesting which teams can find their consistency and find their groove in 2019. It will be a fun November and December as football winds down and the focus on hockey begins. The journey to April is well under way.
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