Home to the 2023 Stanley Cup champions, the Pacific Division has a few potential Stanley Cup champions, but they also have a few teams who could very well end up with the worst record in the Western Conference.
Check out how many points we are predicting for each team as well as our overall division winner.
Having finished last season at the bottom of the division, one would expect the Ducks to make an improvement ahead of this season. The only way is up, right? Well, maybe not.
The Ducks brought in veteran and double Stanley Cup champion Alexander Killorn. Not bad, except that he is 33 years old now and they took a 6.25 million cap hit on a four-year deal. Killorn is still a major improvement to this team and they managed to keep hold of Troy Terry for a 7 million, 7-year contract.
All good things except for their blue line and goaltending. This is where the main issue will arise for Anaheim. They brought in ex-Florida Panther Radko Gudas to try to steady the ship, but overall, this team hasn’t made many improvements and it’s going to be a fight for them to stay inside the top 5 within the division.
2022/23 Points Total: 58
2023/24 Points Prediction: 65
San Jose Sharks
There’s no easy way to put this other than the San Jose Sharks could be one of the main candidates to finish bottom of the Division and the Western Conference.
The Sharks traded away their Norris-winning defenseman Erik Karlsson to the Pittsburgh Penguins. During the regular season last year, they also traded away their top points scorer Timo Meier to the New Jersey Devils.
San Jose is a selling team right now and looking to rebuild, the team is mediocre all around, which does leave room for players to step up to the plate, but overall it’s going to be a rocky ride for Sharks fans.
2022/23 Points Total: 60
2023/24 Points Prediction: 55
The Vancouver Canucks are by no means the worst team in the division, but their main issue lies with their depth charts.
The Canucks don’t have much to offer outside of their top two lines, and defensively they are going to struggle big-time. Their younger players have not done enough in recent years to suggest they can improve the team and it’s looking like the Canucks might be in a playoff race, possibly fighting for a Wild Card spot come the end of the season.
Either way, if they make the playoffs, it’s likely going to be a swift exit as they look to rebuild for the next few seasons.
2022/23 Points Total: 83
2023/24 Points Prediction: 81
The Calgary Flames do boast a strong roster, and the fact they missed out on last year’s playoffs was a major disappointment. The team had the potential to go deep, so can they right the wrongs this season?
Losing 12 overtime games last season was the nail in the coffin. They need to work on producing the goods after regulation or go one step better and look to finish off teams before the end of regulation.
That said, new GM Craig Conroy has traded away Tyler Toffoli to the NJ Devils, and there are more potential players possibly on their way out, it seems the Flames might be heading into rebuild mode but they could still make a challenge this season.
2022/23 Points Total: 93
2023/24 Points Prediction: 90
Seattle surprised everybody last season by making it deep into the playoffs, so deep in fact that they were only one victory away from making the Western Conference finals, having been initially predicted to be swept by the previous reigning Stanley Cup champions, the Colorado Avalanche.
The Kraken have added some strong free agency additions with the likes of defenseman Brian Dumoulin and former Edmonton Oilers forward Kailer Yamamoto. Prospect Shane Wright is set to be a welcome addition to the team, and their overall roster is strong with no outstanding players.
The Kraken’s main strength is their team core, everybody puts a shift in and there’s no room for slackers. The Kraken should be in the playoffs yet again this season.
2022/23 Points Total: 100
2023/24 Points Prediction: 104
Los Angeles Kings
The Los Angeles Kings are a fun team to watch, their approach to games is very much similar to division rivals the Edmonton Oilers. They like to rack up the scores and don’t mind winning games 6-5 as opposed to 3-2.
During the off-season, the Kings traded away three core depth players in Alex Iafallo, Gabriel Vilardi and Rasmus Kupari to acquire center Pierre-Luc Dubois from the Winnipeg Jets.
Dubois was the big off-season acquisition, but they still have some wiggle room to acquire a solid goaltender if they wish, and right now that’s about all that’s holding them back.
With a number of teams in the Pacific division not being up to scratch, it’s very likely the Kings will make the playoffs yet again this season.
2022/23 Points Total: 104
2023/24 Points Prediction: 100
The Edmonton Oilers have been in this position time and time again since they acquired Connor McDavid. Yes, they have the best player in the league by far, but it’s never been enough to see them reach a Stanley Cup final, and they have now been beaten in the playoffs in back-to-back seasons by the team that eventually went on to lift the Stanley Cup.
The Oilers’ main problem for a long time now has been goaltending, and while Stuart Skinner didn’t look all that bad during the regular season, he was a liability during the playoffs.
It’s fair to say the Oilers have the regular season figured out, and they will very likely be making the playoffs again this season. It’s playoff hockey this team struggles with, especially when facing a defensive team.
They added Connor Brown to the roster during the off-season (he missed all of last season with injury) and defenseman Evan Bouchard is yet to re-sign with the team, which is a slight concern.
Overall, the Oilers fanbase will be eagerly awaiting the playoffs to see what their team can produce.
2022/23 Points Total: 109
2023/24 Points Prediction: 107
Vegas Golden Knights
The hottest team in the NHL these days, the Vegas Golden Knights finally got their hands on the Stanley Cup last season when they beat the Florida Panthers 4-1, but this team has been close on many occasions.
Having made the playoffs in 80% of their seasons to date, the Golden Knights have been to the finals twice (their first back in their inaugural season) and made the Conference finals on four occasions. Only once in their six-year history have the Knights failed to make the playoffs.
The Knights have been tight with cap space for a long time now, and finally something had to give as they lost Reilly Smith during the offseason. It’s a blow for the team, but not major enough to suggest they will drop down the division. It’s pretty much the same roster as last season and we expect the Knights to be business as usual.
The Oilers are the current favorites at +210 but we can’t look beyond the team who are stronger all around and have finished ahead of the Oilers in 3 of the previous 4 seasons.
2022/23 Points Total: 111
2023/24 Points Prediction: 112
NHL Pick: Vegas Golden Knights Pacific Division Winner (+275) at Bet365
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