2016-17 was supposed to be the beginning of a dynasty. Led by Connor McDavid, the Oilers had vaulted into a playoff spot with a 103 point regular season.
When things ended in the second round, there was still a great amount of positivity around the organization. They were supposed to go even further this year. As we know, that didn’t happen.
The past 82 games have been incredibly disappointing for Oilersnation, but they weren’t the only team who failed to hit the bar they had set at the beginning of the year.
Is it fair to say the Oilers 2017-18 season was the most disappointing? Let’s take a look.
The Hawks had 109 points last season, and this year saw them sink all the way down to 76. Not only did the Hawks miss the playoffs for the first time in nearly a decade, they finished seventh last in the NHL.
The end of a playoff streak stings, and seeing the core of the team continue to age certainly adds to the sting of a poor season. The huge contracts they have on the books will certainly limit their ability to improve as well.
But honestly, they won three cups in the past decade and they have so much recent success, you struggle to feel any sympathy for them or their fan base.
Where do you even start with the Sabres? They’ve now gone through Jack Eichel’s entry-level contract and still haven’t made any positive strides as an organization.
Their fans had to endure another basement finish and although they will have the best chance to select Rasmus Dahlin first overall this June, this organization is far from just one piece away.
You feel for Sabres fans because they’ve sat through so much awful hockey over the past six years, and still, they seem so far away from competing.
Now, I completely realize that Oilers fans aren’t exactly going to feel pity for their southern rivals, but this past season was all kinds of disappointing for the Flames.
The team thought they had their answer between the pipes and sold a sizeable chunk of their future to shore up their defence. Now they sit with a 36-year-old starting goalie who couldn’t stay healthy this year and no lottery pick.
Things started well, they were three games over .500 when the calendar flipped to 2018 and even rattled off a seven-game win streak to start the new year, but things fell apart quickly.
The team would go on two separate losing streaks of six or more games during the last two months of the season and vanished from the playoff picture. You could argue that collapsing down the stretch stings more than just being bad all season like the Oilers were.
They head into the offseason with no first or second round pick and as it stands right now, they won’t have a second or third rounder in 2019.
While they had some success, and finished higher in the standings than the Oilers, in the grand scheme of things, you could argue 2017-18 was more disappointing for the team down in Calgary.
This season was all types of disastrous for the Sens. The fact they went from being one-goal away from a Stanley Cup Final berth to 20th in the league in less than twelve months in bad enough, but off the ice, it got even worse.
There was drama around every corner for the Senators organization this season, most of it centred around their owner and it was painful to observe.
While most teams that miss the playoffs go into the offseason with the mindset of improving, the Senators appear to headed towards a complete strip down that will begin with the best player the organization ever had, Erik Karlsson.
Back in September, many considered the Oilers favourites to win the Western Conference and contend for the Stanley Cup. Obviously finishing in the bottom third of the NHL’s standings is disappointing but when you look at the big picture of things, there were organizations who experienced much worse failure this year and don’t have the young core that the Oilers do.
What say you? Do you think the Oilers had the most disappointing 2017-18 campaign?