The KHL 2013-2014 season kicks off today with a rematch between last year’s two finalists: Dynamo Moscow and Traktor Chelyabinsk. St. Petersburg SKA grabbed the first edition top spot as the best regular season team last year and then adding several players, including Ilya Kovalchuk. The last spot goes to Metallurg Nk who gave up their top 11 skaters in the offseason.
Let’s not pretend this first run was an easy exercise. With the NHL lockout, many teams had NHL players on their roster up until the last month of the KHL season. A couple teams fell hard when they sent their players back. Other teams were strong without any lockout guys. Add in two new expansion teams, one full of former NHL and AHL players, and there are a lot of questions marks. This is not meant to be a prediction of who will win the Gagarin Cup, make the playoffs, etc. This is a first run at Power Rankings based on the offseason and last season’s work.
I plan to give Power Rankings weekly on Mondays, so stay tuned to see what changes over the 50+ scheduled games between now and Sunday. Here we go….hockey season is in!