Today, we continue our roundup of the offseason moves other teams across the league made over the course of the offseason. Previously, we had reviewed the Metropolitan Division’s offseason. Today, we tackle the other Eastern Conference division: the Atlantic Division.
Additions: David Perron, Andrew Copp, Dominik Kubalik, Ben Chiarot, Robert Hagg, Olli Maatta, Ville Husso
Re-signings: Filip Zadina, Jake Walman
Subtractions: Marc Staal, Thomas Greiss
The Red Wings may have improved more than any team in the NHL this offseason, taking a talented roster that showed promise at times last year and added goaltending (Husso), talent (Perron, Kubalik), and experience (Copp, Chiarot, Maatta). Yzerman, architect of the Tampa Bay Lightning, is beginning to put his fingerprints on the Red Wings as they begin to power out of their rebuilt. Columbus may have added Johnny Gaudreau, but Detroit added more significant pieces in positions of importance. I would expect Columbus to finish behind Detroit in the East.
Tampa Bay Lightning
Additions: Vladislav Namestnikov, Ian Cole, Philippe Myers, Haydn Fleury
Re-signings: Nick Paul, Anthony Cirelli, Mikhail Sergachev, Erik Cernak
Subtractions: Ondrej Palat, Ryan McDonagh, Jan Rutta
Three straight Stanley Cup Finals appearances and with no signs of slowing down, Columbus remains firmly behind the Tampa Bay in the East. The Lightning lost key winger Ondrej Palat, only to replace him with Vladislav Namestnikov, a one-time Bolts draft pick who returns to fill a tough middle six role. In addition, the Lightning replace veteran Ryan McDonagh with veteran Ian Cole from Carolina. Another season, another year of Tampa Bay in contention.
Additions: Matthew Tkachuk, Nick Cousins, Colin White, Rudolfs Balcers, Marc Staal
Re-signings: Eetu Luostarinen
Subtractions: Jonathan Huberdeau, MacKenzie Weegar, Claude Giroux, Mason Marchment, Ben Chiarot
The Florida Panthers won the President’s Trophy last season, lost in the first round, and fully embraced chaos this offseason. Matthew Tkachuk requested a trade out of Calgary and Florida stepped to the front of the line, paying the price to pry him from Calgary and sign him to an eight year deal in exchange for Jonathan Huberdeau and MacKenzie Weegar. The Panthers are taking advantage of their window being open to try to maximize chances at the Cup, and should be commended for their big swings.
Additions: Calle Jarnkrok, Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Adam Gaudette, Victor Mete, Jordie Benn, Matt Murray, Ilya Samsonov
Re-signings: Pierre Engvall, Timothy Liljegren, Mark Giordano
Subtractions: Ilya Mikheyev, Jason Spezza, Colin Blackwell, Ondrej Kase, Ilya Lyubushikin, Jack Campbell, Petr Mrazek
Toronto is still unbelievably talented up front, but all eyes will be on the crease this season. After another early playoff exit, the Maple Leafs have moved on from Jack Campbell, revamping their goaltending tandem with Matt Murray and Ilya Samsonov. Kyle Dubas is taking a massive swing in his final year as general manager (he does not have an extension for after this year) and his future in Toronto depends on it paying off. Columbus is still firmly behind Toronto.
Additions: Alex DeBrincat, Claude Giroux, Tyler Motte, Cam Talbot
Re-signings: Tim Stutzle, Josh Norris, Mathieu Joseph, Dylan Gambrell, Erik Brannstrom
Subtractions: Connor Brown, Colin White, Michael Del Zotto, Matt Murray, Filip Gustavsson
In any other offseason, the Senators may have had the best summer of any team in the division, but clearly did not this summer despite major additions. Alex DeBrincat and Claude Giroux should improve their forward core, but the team still has major question marks in net and on defense. Ottawa might be the most entertaining team this offseason, playing high scoring game after high scoring game this season.
Additions: Kirby Dach, Sean Monahan, Evgenii Dadanov, Mike Matheson, Juraj Slafkovsky
Re-signings: Rem Pitlick, Michael Pezzetta, Chris Wideman, Sam Montembeault
Subtractions: Ryan Poehling, Jeff Petry, Shea Weber, Alexander Romanov
Kent Hughes, in his first offseason as general manager, began the hard work of rebuilding the Canadiens. Gone are Jeff Petry and LTIR’ed Shea Weber, and in are young talents Kirby Dach and first overall pick Juraj Slafkovsky. The Canadiens are still years away from contending, but this summer was a good start to their rebuild. Columbus should, however, finish ahead of them in the standings.
Additions: Ilya Lyubushkin, Eric Comrie
Re-signings: Tage Thompson, Victor Olofsson, Vinnie Hinostroza, Jacob Bryson, Craig Anderson, Malcolm Subban
Subtractions: Colin Miller, Mark Pysyk
The Sabres made their biggest move of the offseason when they re-signed Tage Thompson. Thompson scored 38 goals last season and the Sabres paid him handsomely for it (7 years by $50 million), but Thompson had 18 career goals before last year. Signing him could work out for the Sabres long-term (like the Nathan MacKinnon contract did for Colorado), or it could blow up in their face (like the Jeff Skinner contract did for … uh, Buffalo), but the next few years of the Sabres’ success hinge on it.
Additions: Pavel Zacha, David Krejci
Re-signings: Patrice Bergeron
Subtractions: Erik Haula, Curtis Lazar
Meet the new Bruins, same as the old Bruins. The Bruins brought David Krejci out of retirement, re-signed Patrice Bergeron, and are running their core back for what feels like one last kick at the can to win the Stanley Cup. The team has a new head coach, as Jim Montgomery replaces Bruce Cassidy and his .672 points percentage, but they will be faced with numerous injuries to start the season. Brad Marchand, Charlie McAvoy, and Matt Grzelcyk will miss the start of the season due to various injuries. This feels like the last go-around for this edition of the Bruins, one with so many ties to the Cup team of 2011. If Patrice Bergeron is going to win his second Cup, this feels like the last chance.
How do you think the Blue Jackets stack up to the Atlantic Division? Sound off below!