The NHL is back! The 2022-23 regular season kicked off with a pair of games in Europe last week but the Oilers will make their debut tonight when they host the Vancouver Canucks.
To get geared up for the NHL’s return, the Oilersnation staff made predictions for how the 2022-23 season is going to go down. We picked our Stanley Cup winners, major award winners, where Connor Bedard is going to wind up, and made some spicy, bold predictions.
Who’s going to win the Art Ross Trophy?
Cam Lewis: I don’t think we’re being homers even if Connor McDavid is the unanimous choice here. It’s pretty much a given. My spicier take is that it’ll be a career-high of 50 goals and 133 points.
Jason Gregor: Connor McDavid.
Robin Brownlee: It’ll be Connor McDavid — by a lot.
Tyler Yaremchuk: Connor McDavid obviously. Like seriously, if he’s healthy, how can anyone catch him?
BaggedMilk: This is an easy one. Connor McDavid. He set a career-high in points last year and didn’t win the Hart. Grudge Connor will be here it will be fantastic.
Zach Laing: Without a doubt in my mind, Connor McDavid. He’s scoring 130 this year.
Jay Downton: Connor McDavid.
Woz: No brainer, without a doubt it’s Connor McDavid. How many points? I’ll go with 137… Scary to think it can be higher.
Nation Dan: Connor McDavid.
Josh D: McDavid will win the Art Ross, provided he plays 75 games.
Who’s going to win the Rocket Richard Trophy?
Cam Lewis: Auston Matthews will win again assuming he’s healthy.
Jason Gregor: Auston Matthews.
Robin Brownlee: Leon Draisaitl.
Tyler Yaremchuk: I’m taking another chalk pick here: Auston Matthews. Sorry Oilers fans, but I just can’t see Draisaitl catching him.
BaggedMilk: I put money on Auston Matthews to win it provided that he can stay healthy. The dude rips the puck and the odds were decent, ya know?
Zach Laing: Is it too much of a homer pick to say McDavid? I think this is the year he hits 50 goals, but he might be hard-pressed against Auston Matthews. Dark horse: Kirill Kaprisov.
Jay Downton: Leon Draisaitl.
Woz: Hate to be that guy but I still think it’ll be Auston Matthews however I can see Connor scoring 50 goals this year with Leon scoring 59. Yes, Matthews will score another 60.
Nation Dan: Kirill Kaprizov.
Josh D: Matthews cruises to another Rocket with 64 goals.
Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
Who’s going to win the Hart Trophy?
Cam Lewis: I think voter fatigue has unfortunately become a thing for Connor McDavid, so he’ll only win if the Oilers have a completely dominant season. It might be Cale Makar’s turn to win.
Jason Gregor: Connor McDavid.
Robin Brownlee: Connor McDavid.
Tyler Yaremchuk: I’m putting a considerable wager on Connor McDavid to win the Hart at +200 odds on Betway. Voter fatigue killed him last year and it won’t be a factor this season.
BaggedMilk: Please. Add another one to the pile, Connor.
Zach Laing: This could be Cale Makar’s year. Everyone knew last year how good he was, but he truly hit another level in the playoffs. He’ll be front of mind for the voters.
Jay Downton: Connor McDavid.
Woz: Connor McDavid. The only reason he lost last season was due to voter fatigue.
Nation Dan: Nathan MacKinnon.
Josh D: McDavid overcomes voter fatigue to win another Hart.
Who’s going to win the Vezina Trophy?
Cam Lewis: It feels like a coin flip between Andrei Vasilevskiy and Igor Shesterkin but I have a feeling it’ll be somebody more out of the blue. I’m going with Jake Oettinger.
Jason Gregor: Juuse Saros.
Robin Brownlee: Don’t see why Igor Shesterkin of the New York Rangers can’t win it again.
Tyler Yaremchuk: Jacob Markstrom. I know a lot of you won’t like this but he was tremendous last season and he’ll have the best blueline in the league in front of him. He’ll still give up 5+ every time he played at Rogers Place, but he’ll win the Vezina.
BaggedMilk: Igor Shesterkin is so good and I think he’s going to take it. That’s what I’d bet on. If I lose, though, it’s because Vasilevskiy did his thing.
Zach Laing: Thatcher Demko is a dark horse that could make sense. He was great last year and the Canucks could make some noise.
Jay Downton: Jack Campbell.
Woz: Little bit unsure on this one, I’ll give it to Andrei Vasilevskiy.
Nation Dan: Thatcher Demko.
Josh D: Saros wins the Vezina, carrying a mediocre Preds team.
Who’s going to win the Norris Trophy?
Cam Lewis: Voter fatigue will catch up to him eventually but another huge season coupled with team success should result in Makar winning his second Norris.
Jason Gregor: Cale Makar.
Robin Brownlee: Cale Makar again.
Tyler Yaremchuk: Hot take: Mortiz Seider will be a finalist for this award. Not a hot take: Cale Makar wins this thing again. He’s just flat-out better than everyone else.
BaggedMilk: Cale Makar seems like the safe bet so I’ll go with Roman Josi. My guy put up a 96-point season last year and didn’t get the love he deserved, and I always love a revenge tour.
Zach Laing: Makar, Cale. See above.
Jay Downton: Edmonton Oiler Jakob Chychrun. If he doesn’t get traded here, then Roman Josi
Woz: I’ll give this one to Cale Makar, in my opinion, he’s the second most enjoyable player to watch in the NHL next to Connor McDavid. Bit of a bold prediction but I can see Darnell Nurse getting into the top three for Norris voting, this will be a season where Darnell Nurse proves the doubters wrong.
Nation Dan: Cale Makar.
Josh D: Adam Fox for the Norris.
Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Who’s going to win the Calder Trophy?
Cam Lewis: I have a homer feeling that Dylan Holloway will make a big case for rookie of the year but my actual bet would be Owen Power. He looked great in his cup of coffee last year.
Jason Gregor: Owen Power.
Robin Brownlee: Dylan Holloway.
Tyler Yaremchuk: I love Matty Beniers in Seattle, but I got this feeling about Kent Johnson in Columbus. He oozes skill and if he gets PP1 time and works his way into a top six that features Laine and Gaudreau, he could really rack up the points this season.
BaggedMilk: Dylan Hollway breaks the drought for the Oilers!
Zach Laing: Dylan Holloway is a sneaky longshot if he stays in the top-six. Add in some powerplay time and boy oh boy, he could make some noise. I’ll hang my hat on Matty Beniers.
Jay Downton: Matty Beniers.
Woz: I’d like to say Holloway but I think Matty Beniers will win it. He will be vital for the Seattle Kraken this year if the Kraken are going to take another step forward.
Nation Dan: Matty Beniers.
Josh D: Mason McTavish for the Calder.
Who’s going to win the Presidents’ Trophy?
Cam Lewis: The Toronto Maple Leafs are going to have their best regular season of this era and you know what’s going to happen in the first round.
Jason Gregor: Carolina Hurricanes.
Robin Brownlee: Colorado.
Tyler Yaremchuk: The Tampa Bay Lightning. The Avs aren’t as good as they were last season and I think the Lightning will roll this season. Vasilevskiy is a flat-out game breaker and I love their depth up front, even though they lost Ondrej Palat.
BaggedMilk: You can call me crazy all you want but I think the Oilers have a shot. They finished with 104 points last year and sucked ass for two months. I believe!
Zach Laing: I think it’s the Carolina Hurricanes. They had a great season last year and added Brent Burns and Max Pacioretty, the latter of whom is out until the new year.
Jay Downton: *Spits* Toronto Maple Leafs.
Woz: Second round exit. Yes, they will win a round.
Nation Dan: Tampa Bay Lightning.
Josh D: Colorado wins the Presidents’ trophy.
Who’s going to win the Connor Bedard sweepstakes?
Cam Lewis: The Montreal Canadiens. They won’t finish last in the league but they’ll get the lottery luck.
Jason Gregor: Philadelphia Flyers.
Robin Brownlee: Arizona or Seattle.
Tyler Yaremchuk: I’m not sure if they’ll win the lottery, but the Blackhawks are coming in last. Their goaltending is just terrible, they lost Debrincat, and once they trade Kane they’ll have basically no offensive drivers. They’re so bad.
BaggedMilk: Chicago. They’re going to trade Kane and suck as bad as any of the sucks have ever sucked.
Zach Laing: Why do I feel like some random team like the New York Islanders are going to miss the playoffs but somehow win the Bedard lottery?
Jay Downton: Arizona State Coyotes.
Woz: I believe he will go to a team that won’t tank for him. Much like when Edmonton landed McDavid, no one expected the Oilers to win the lottery. Is it fair to say I can see the San Jose Sharks being that team? I just feel it will be a team no one expects to land Bedard and I don’t see the San Jose Sharks being anything special. San Jose Sharks are my answer but I also can see the Seattle Kraken landing him. Is the Pacific that bad? Not sure but I don’t see Arizona or Chicago landing him.
Nation Dan: Arizona State Coyotes.
Josh D: Connor Bedard will be a Chicago Blackhawk.
Who’s going to win the Stanley Cup?
Cam Lewis: The Lightning get revenge and beat the Avs in the Stanley Cup Final.
Jason Gregor: Colorado.
Robin Brownlee: Colorado again.
Tyler Yaremchuk: The New York Rangers will meet the Edmonton Oilers in the Stanley Cup Final. You know the rest.
BaggedMilk: Oilers or bust, baby!
Zach Laing: Edmonton Oilers, Hope Will Never Die.
Jay Downton: OILERS ALWAYS.
Woz: New York Rangers. They have all the pieces to do it. I believe next season will be the year Edmonton will have enough experience to really go the distance and win it though.
Nation Dan: Edmonton Oilers.
Josh D: The Hurricanes will win the Stanley Cup.
What’s your BOLD PREDICTION for 2022-23?
Cam Lewis: An Oilers one is that they’ll trade their first-round pick for the first time since 2006, but my league-wide one is that the Winnipeg Jets will be bogged down by internal drama and they’ll have a mid-season blow-up.
Jason Gregor: For the first time since 1996, and only the ninth time in NHL history the league will have two 60-goal scorers in the same season.
Robin Brownlee: Connor McDavid scores 50 goals.
Tyler Yaremchuk: The Boston Bruins and LA Kings will both miss the playoffs. SPICY ENOUGH FOR YA?
BaggedMilk: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins puts up a career-high in goals and points with 25G and 45A for 70 points.
Zach Laing: The Seattle Kraken make the playoffs. I think this team took a big step forward in the offseason by adding goal-scoring, which was their biggest issue last year.
Jay Downton: Evander Kane, 50 goals.
Woz: Jay Woodcroft wins the Jack Adams Trophy..is that bold? maybe my bold prediction is that the Maple Leafs win a playoff round.
Nation Dan: Jack Eichel finished top five in Hart voting.
Josh D: Bold prediction: Saros finishes 2nd in Hart voting.