Puck it Up 

By Jacqui McLean 

On October 7, the start of the sixth and a half month long National Hockey League (NHL) season commenced. The 32 hockey teams, across Canada and the United States, will embark on a 82 game regular season stretch, one of the longest in professional sports. 

Following their Stanley Cup win during the 2022 season, the Colorado Avalanche are the predicted winners again for the 2023 season according to NBC through their sports betting odds. Behind the Avalanche, are Toronto Maple Leafs, Tampa Bay Lightning, and the Florida Panthers. Unfortunately, for the fans of the local San Jose Sharks team, the Sharks fall in the bottom three. It looks like it is going to take quite the upset for the Sharks to win this season. Adhering to the predicted trend, after the first 10 days of gameplay the Sharks were last in the Western Conference with a record of 0-4. 

While local fans may have little to look forward to this season, there are quite a few milestones that are within reach for many of the NHL’s longterm players. Alex Ovechkin, arguably one of the best forwards, is 20 goals away from the 800 goal mark, an achievement only two other players have accomplished. In addition, Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning nears the 500 goal mark, and both Phil Kessel of the Vegas Knights, and John Tavares of the Maple Leafs are close to the 400 goal mark. One milestone almost guaranteed to be met this year is the 1000 games played milestone which 13 players are all within who are all within 78 games of. 

As a San Jose Sharks fan, the season may be bleak, but it will definitely be filled with action and notable milestones.