NHL season is upon us, and NHL 16 arrived for Xbox One and PlayStation 4. It brings a number of fundamental changes we highlighted in our tips and strategies feature, along with recurring favorites like Ultimate Team and Be a Pro.
However, if you’re just getting started or don’t know which superstar squad to begin with, we have a few suggestions on which teams to select. After all, not everyone can win with the New York Islanders, so it never hurts to have a good championship contender.
Of course we have to go with the team that won it all last year in the Stanley Cup Finals, where the Blackhawks took care of the Tampa Bay Lightning in six games. They’re likely to return to championship form this year, bringing a sharp-looking squad like Patrick Kane, Ryan Hartman, Marko Dano and Kyle Baun, among others. With Rocky Wirtz back to coach, they’ll be in the playoff hunt, even virtually.
St. Louis Blues
Even though the team didn’t excel in the playoffs last year, the Blues are a powerhouse on the ice. Consisting of a squad including Robert Bortuzzo, Jori Lehtera, Chris Butler and Patrik Berglund, they’re very good on the offense, and can also break up plays defensively. They’re likely to have a good run on the ice this year, and that’ll show in the game as well. Never doubt the spirit of St. Louis.
The Capitals have seen their fair share of bumps over the years, but they’ve come a long way and have a chance to clean up this season. Veteran Alex Ovechkin will no doubt lead the team again, followed by skilled players like John Carlson, Michael Latta, John Erskine and many others. They’ll have their power plays together, and they will no doubt do stuff on the defensive side as well.
New York Rangers
It’s been a while since the Rangers drank from the Stanley Cup, but they managed to become a contender, making their way to the playoffs several times under the guidance of captain Ryan McDonagh. The team knows how to make clutch shots and then stops on the other side, thanks to goalie Henrik Lundqvist. Expect these guys to have another impressive year, with a team that includes Ryan Bourque, Jesper Fast and Raphael Diaz.
The Canadien goaltenders do an excellent job keeping shots at bay, and offensively there’s a good squad, between Max Pacioretty, Tomas Plekanec and Brendan Gallagher. Whether they can keep up the momentum mid-season is questionable. Still, at the start of the season, they’re a great pick.