Bruins Are Best in the Salary Cap Era

Now that the 2022-2023 regular season is complete, we can safely say the Boston Bruins are the top regular season team in the salary cap era after a historic season. Sure, there are many (probably most) that will say the only thing that matters is the Stanley Cup.

That may be true.

However, to sustain success in a salary cap era, you have to manage your roster and the Bruins, at least on paper have done that. One could make the argument that they underachieved in the playoffs based on their regular season success and you wouldn’t get much of a debate from me.

As fans, all you can reasonably ask for is to be competitive. To expect a Stanley Cup every year and anything else false short is just not reasonable. To do it in a salary cap world, impossible.

The Montreal Canadiens, the most successful team with their 23 Stanley Cups in NHL history have the 23rd best record of the 30 teams around since the salary cap began in the 2005-2006 season. Yet, with all the success they’ve had throughout their history, their young fan base hasn’t had that much to cheer about in the cap era except a small blip on the radar screen during the COVID Bubble.

It hasn’t been all roses for the Bruins. They missed the playoffs in 2014-2015 despite having 96 points (most points to miss the playoffs in NHL history), a distinction since equaled by the 2017-2018 Florida Panthers and 2018-2019 Montreal Canadiens. The Bruins would miss the following playoffs by a tie-breaker.

The NHL playoffs begin tomorrow and the Bruins are the overwhelming favorites to bring home Lord Stanley. Anything less will be deemed a failure. But there is no denying this team has been a treat to watch through this run. How long can they keep it up? They’ve got their work cut out for them in the offseason.

Here’s a look at team records since the implementation of the salary cap. Note that the Atlanta Thrashers and Winnipeg Jets are combined as Winnipeg and all the variations of the Coyotes as Arizona.

1Boston Bruins14037924441671751
2Pittsburgh Penguins14027894631501728
3Washington Capitals14037684671681704
4Nashville Predators14037564901571669
5New York Rangers14047555031461656
6San Jose Sharks14047424971651649
7Tampa Bay Lightning14047545131371645
8Minnesota Wild14037355141541624
9Dallas Stars14037305101631623
10St Louis Blues14057275111671621
11Anaheim Ducks14057065181811593
12Carolina Hurricanes14027065251711583
13Detroit Red Wings14056975211871581
14Calgary Flames14047115341591581
15Colorado Avalanche14047145551351563
16Vancouver Canucks14037035461541560
17Chicago Blackhawks14046905441701550
18Toronto Maple Leafs14046865441741546
19Los Angeles Kings14046845601601528
20Winnipeg Jets14056895691471525
21New Jersey Devils14036795581661524
22Philadelphia Flyers14036675481881522
23Montreal Canadiens14056775621661520
24Florida Panthers14036675501861520
25New York Islanders14026635681711497
26Ottawa Senators14056605811641484
27Columbus Blue Jackets14046366111571429
28Buffalo Sabres14036226141671411
29Edmonton Oilers14056286241531409
30Arizona Coyotes14046016401631365

Follow me on Twitter @dominictiano

Published by Dominic Tiano

Following the Ontario Hockey League players eligible for the NHL Draft. I provide season-long stats, updates and player profiles as well as draft rankings.

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