Each year EA Sports previews the upcoming NHL season by running a full simulation of the year on their latest title. This year EA ran their simulation on NHL 14 and the Stanley Cup winner was … the St. Louis Blues.
How did your team do in EA's virtual simulation?
Let's first point out the team photo of the Blues with their virtual trophy. David Backes looks a bit possessed, doesn't he? If that's supposed to be Ken Hitchcock standing behind his team, well … let's just say video games have a slimming effect.
As for the simulation itself, these types of things usually lead to some truly bizarre results. Considering the crazy injuries and trades you've probably seen the computer make when left to its own devices, who knows what the rosters looked like in this simulation when the year ended. Still, the St. Louis Blues are becoming the trendy pick to hoist the Cup. The Hockey News predicted a similar result for the team back in August.
Here's how the West shook out:
- Chicago Blackhawks – 108 pts
- L.A. Kings – 100 pts
- St. Louis Blues – 99 pts
- Vancouver Canucks – 93 pts
- San Jose Sharks – 90 pts
- Minnesota Wild – 90 pts
- Dallas Stars – 89 pts – Wild Card
- Edmonton Oilers – 89 pts – Wild Card
- Anaheim Ducks – 85 pts
- Phoenix Coyotes – 84 pts
- Nashville Predators – 83 pts
- Winnipeg Jets – 77 pts
- Colorado Avalanche – 76 pts
- Calgary Flames – 75 pts
Interesting. NHL 14 believes the Edmonton Oilers will make the playoffs and narrowly edge out the Anaheim Ducks and the Phoenix Coyotes. Bold prediction, but we'll see how it pans out.
As for the East:
- Pittsburgh Penguins – 106 pts
- Boston Bruins – 104 pts
- Detroit Red Wings – 102 pts
- New York Rangers – 101 pts
- Washington Capitals – 100 pts
- Montreal Canadiens – 91 pts
- Toronto Maple Leafs – 89 pts – Wild Card
- New York Islanders – 89 pts – Wild Card
- Ottawa Senators – 86 pts
- Philadelphia Flyers – 84 pts
- New Jersey Devils – 84 pts
- Columbus Blue Jackets – 84 pts
- Tampa Bay Lightning – 83 pts
- Buffalo Sabres – 77 pts
- Carolina Hurricanes – 74 pts
- Florida Panthers – 73 pts
Pittsburgh up top is no surprise, but what might catch your attention is the prediction the New York Islanders will sneak back into the playoffs for a second consecutive season.
(H/T EA Sports)