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Three NHL Teams Ready to Return to Playoffs

It is too early to predict the playoff spots for the 2015-16 NHL season at this point in time during the summer. However, some teams can be looked at that finished outside the postseason last season but look poised to return to the postseason in the upcoming NHL season.

Here is a quick look at three of those teams

Columbus Blue Jackets

The Blue Jackets were high on any list for returning to the postseason even prior to their acquisition of Brandon Saad the former Chicago Blackhawks star, who adds a great deal of postseason experience to the club.

Columbus looked as if they would make the playoffs at the start o f last season quickly it was full of a number of injuries with over 500 man games lost due to injuries, which ended up eliminating them early from any hope of playing in the postseason.

The Blue Jackets finished the regular season with 16 wins in their final 21 games. While the hard-working, young Blue Jackets look to return to the top 8 in the Eastern Conference, the addition of Saad playing alongside Ryan Johansen will push the team even higher this season.

Los Angeles Kings

Last season the defending Stanley Cup champions Los Angeles Kings went from being a contender early to a bystander missing out on the playoffs by only two points.

The Kings disappointing end to the season was followed by issues off the ice for a team that played without Slava Voynov its top defenseman for almost the entire season after he was charged with domestic battery earlier in the regular season.

Jarret Stoll got arrested for drug charges and then the contract of Mike Richards was in the process of being terminated by the team following an incident at the border between the U.S. and Canada.

They have added Milan Lucic form the Bruins, which will help the offense.

Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins fell dramatically last season. The terrible season cost Peter Chiarelli the general manager his job and regulars like Carl Soderberg, Dougie Hamilton and Milan Lucic were all off loaded.

Don Sweeney the new GM was beat up in the press over the trade of Hamilton to Calgary, but Boston is not as bad as people want you to think.

Zdeno Chara has slowed a bit, but had a long offseason with no playoffs to recuperate. The addition of Matt Beleskey will help make up for Lucic’s absence. Brett Connolly who was picked up before last season’s trade deadline but then hurt will help this season.

The Bruins might not be a Cup contender but Boston should reach the top eight in the East again.

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