3 NHL teams poised to end their playoff droughts in 2021-22
Every year, multiple NHL teams make the postseason that did not do so the year before. That pushes a few teams into a one-year drought that can turn into a longer one if not handled correctly. Currently, there are eight teams with a two or more year drought in between playoff appearances. Of those eight, we chose three that we feel will be ending their droughts this spring when hockey starts to get down to business.
These three NHL teams will end their playoff droughts this year
1. Buffalo Sabres
First off, we went with the least likely out of the three to make it, according to the standings. Buffalo is currently on a 12-year playoff drought (longest in the NHL) and is on the outside looking in as the ninth-place team in the east but there is still plenty of time for them to make a move up the standings. Led by leading point scorer Victor Olofson, the Sabres are also getting rid of the Jack Eichel headache that was looming over the team. Many people see the Sabres as bottom dwellers after dealing away their best player–even though he was hurt– but instead, look for them to rally around each other and play tough hockey.
2. LA Kings
The Kings are led by LA legend, Anze Kopitar and Alex Iafallo and have been playing very good hockey lately. They are currently in playoff position and seem likely to climb the standings, especially if the team is able to acquire some depth as the season goes along. Four straight wins over Montreal, Buffalo, St. Louis and New Jersey have this team riding high and looking to get back to the playoffs for the first time since the 2017-2018 season.
He does it again!
— NHL (@NHL) November 6, 2021
3. NY Rangers
The Rangers are on a 4-year playoff drought, with their last playoff appearance coming in the 2016-2017 season. The Rangers are also the highest-ranked team of any of the teams chosen for this article as they are currently the third highest point-getters in the easr=tern conference. They are led by defenseman Adam Fox, who surprisingly leads his team in points and by goalie Igor Shesterkin who is fourth in the NHL in save percentage (.943)