NHL Teams with Best Chance to Recover from Early Season Struggles

Experts are discussing which NHL teams not currently in playoff spots have the best chance to fight back and get in, with the New Jersey Devils, Minnesota Wild, Pittsburgh Penguins, Edmonton Oilers, and Arizona Coyotes being mentioned as potential candidates.

‣ U.S. Thanksgiving is an important time in the NHL season, as it typically determines the playoff picture for the year.
‣ Teams that are not currently in playoff spots still have a chance to fight back and make it into the playoffs.
‣ The New Jersey Devils, Minnesota Wild, and Pittsburgh Penguins are all teams that have potential to turn their season around and secure a spot in the playoffs.


U.S. Thanksgiving marks the critical point of the NHL season, as it tends to decide the playoff picture. The standings through play on Wednesday, Nov. 22 have sparked discussions on the teams that could fight back to secure a playoff spot. Notably, the New Jersey Devils are trailing four points out of a wild-card spot, but there’s a strong belief that they will get the chance to fight back and secure a spot. The team has faced challenges with key players missing games, but with the return of star player Jack Hughes and captain Nico Hischier, the Devils are expected to rise in the standings. However, they need to improve their goaltending to solidify their position in the playoffs.

The Minnesota Wild is another team with potential to secure a playoff spot. Despite the struggle to get saves and a poor penalty kill, the team’s recent performance shows promise for improvement. The team’s history of back-to-back 100-point seasons adds to the confidence in their ability to bounce back and secure a wild-card berth.

The Pittsburgh Penguins are seen as a talented team that is expected to perform better and secure a spot in the playoffs. Despite a mediocre defense, the Penguins have displayed strong offense and have been getting the goaltending to complement their performance. With the addition of Reilly Smith to their top six, the Penguins are expected to rejuvenate and make a strong push towards securing a playoff spot.

The Edmonton Oilers have struggled but are still considered to have potential to turn things around and secure a playoff spot. The team is urged to make changes to improve their goaltending and make necessary adjustments to secure a spot in the playoffs.

The Arizona Coyotes, although currently in a rut, are expected to bounce back and secure a Wildcard spot as they start to get some of their more consequential players back from injury. The team’s depth at forward is seen as a significant advantage that will help them stand out from the rest of the pack. With an improved performance in goaltending, the Coyotes are viewed as strong contenders for a playoff spot.

Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson is a Senior Writer for HockeyMonitor. With a background in Sports Media, Alex joined the team in 2022. He focuses on providing the latest hockey news, game scores, and fresh NHL trade rumors.

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