The Washington Capitals had a good offseason, but just how good was it compared to the rest of the NHL? Pretty darn good according to Luke Fox of Sportsnet.
Fox ranks the Caps sixth in his offseason power rankings that judges teams based on their offseason moves. The Caps may have lost several notable players, but the addition of Justin Williams and T.J. Oshie more than makes up for that as Fox notes:
Washington traded in some solid role players — Eric Fehr, Troy Brouwer, Joel Ward — for bigger-name forwards in Justin Williams and T.J. Oshie, which should make them even more fun to watch. After some posturing, Braden Holtby and the Caps realized they're both better off together, to the tune of five years and $30.5 million. Fair.
Fox does not mention perhaps the Caps' biggest loss in Mike Green, but his point is fair. The Caps lost forwards who were mainly third-line players and added two top-six wingers. That lifts the Caps all the way to sixth in his opinion.
What about some of the other notable offseason moves?
Perhaps the biggest story of the offseason was Toronto winning the Mike Babcock sweepstakes. As great a coach as he is, trading away Phil Kessel makes this team worse, at least in the short-term. While no one could dispute the Maple Leafs are better off for the future with Babcock in tow, for now they will continue to struggle which resulted in them falling all the way to No. 18 on the list.
All eyes were on Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel at the draft and, not surprisingly, the addition of these two lifted their teams high on the list as Edmonton ranked No. 1 and Buffalo No. 3. Dallas was able to slip in ahead of the Sabres thanks to the addition of Patrick Sharp, Antti Niemi and Johnny Oduya. While Niemi is an upgrade in net, his best years are behind him. Calling the Stars the second most improved team in the NHL, to me, is a bit much.
After winning their third Stanley Cup in six years, Chicago needed to cut salary in the offseason and boy did they as Sharp, Oduya and Brandon Saad are all moving on. It's no surprise to see the Blackhawks slide all the way down to No. 28 as a result.
For a team like the Caps to come within one goal of advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals and still rank sixth in the offseason rankings bodes well for what they can do this season.