Predicting the 2022-23 Final Standings in the Eastern Conference

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

In recent years the Atlantic Division has been dominated by the same four teams: The Tampa Bay Lightning, Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs and Florida Panthers. It has been these four teams in the driver seat with the other four teams sitting in the back seat.

Teams like Ottawa and Detroit come into this season trying to close the gap between them and the top four teams but whether or not they are in it for the long haul remains to be seen.

Here is how our Bolts by the Bay staff predicts the Atlantic Division will end as well as the Metropolitan.

Noah @noah_wilson72

Atlantic: 1. Toronto 2. Tampa 3. Detroit 4. Florida (WC) 5. Ottawa (WC) 6. Boston 7. Buffalo 8. Montreal

Metro: 1. Carolina 2. NY Rangers 3. Pittsburgh 4. New Jersey 5. Washington 6. Columbus 7. NY Islanders 8. Philadelphia

Noah believes that this is the year that Boston finally misses the playoffs. With some significant players missing time to start the year for the Bruins, many see a way that this team can fall behind early and miss out on the postseason.

Despite Boston not making playoffs, Noah still has both wild cards coming from the Atlantic Division as both Detroit and Ottawa find their way into the playoffs.

Garrett @Garrettmorgan13

Atlantic: 1. Toronto 2. Tampa 3. Florida 4. Detroit (WC) 5. Boston 6. Ottawa 7. Buffalo 8. Montreal

Metro: 1. NY Rangers 2. Carolina 3. Pittsburgh 4. Washington (WC) 5. Columbus 6. New Jersey 7. NY Islanders 8. Philadelphia

Garrett also has Detroit sliding into the playoffs ahead of Boston. Garrett is also sticking with the same four teams to come out of the Metropolitan last season.

The most interesting prediction is the New York Islanders not only missing the playoffs but finishing second to last in the division. The Islanders have been picked by many to be a bounce back candidate after a very difficult 2021-22 season.

Henry @henryyoho

Atlantic: 1. Toronto 2. Florida 3. Tampa 4. Boston (WC) 5. Detroit 6. Ottawa 7. Buffalo 8. Montreal

Metro: 1. NY Rangers 2. Carolina 3. Pittsburgh 4. NY Islanders (WC) 5. Washington 6. New Jersey 7. Columbus 8. Philadelphia

I think that the gap between teams like Detroit and Ottawa and the rest of the top teams in the Atlantic Division is shrinking. I don’t think that either one of them are quite ready to qualify for playoffs, but I believe they will be in the hunt much later this season.

In the hopes of predicting something other than the exact same teams to make the playoffs again this year, I think the New York Islanders can be poised to make the playoffs again. The Islanders got crushed last season with COVID and having a long road trip while waiting for their new arena to open.

I am also very afraid that Alex Ovechkin will make me regret leaving him out of the playoff picture.

Stephen @stephenparrino

Atlantic: 1. Toronto 2. Florida 3. Boston 4. Tampa (WC) 5. Ottawa (WC) 6. Buffalo 7. Detroit 8. Montreal

Metro: 1. Carolina 2. Pittsburgh 3. NY Rangers 4. Washington 5. NY Islanders 6. Columbus 7. New Jersey 8. Philadelphia

Stephen rounds out our staff as we have all picked Toronto to win the Atlantic division. Stephen still has the top four in the Atlantic remaining intact but has the Lightning sliding down into the first wild card spot.

While picking both wild cards to come out of the Atlantic Division, Stephen is also picking for Washington to miss out on playoffs this year. Ultimately with this competitive Eastern Conference, there are going to be some good teams being left out this season.

Next. Five Lightning Players Expected to Step Up this Season. dark