PHT’s 2020 Stanley Cup predictions

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NBCSN’s coverage of the 2019-20 NHL season begins with Wednesday’s matchup between the St. Louis Blues and Washington Capitals when the Blues raise their 2019 Stanley Cup banner. Coverage begins at 6:30p.m. ET on NBCSN. You can watch the game online and on the NBC Sports app by clicking here.

We’ve looked at the East, the West, who will win some of the NHL trophies this season, and now, finally, it’s time to say who we think will win it all this season.

Will the Blues repeat? Only one team has done so in two decades, and they know how difficult it will be to go through the grind of the season and the playoff battle in order to raise the Cup again. There are plenty of contenders in both conferences, and here’s who we think will finish on top when all is said and done.

Who do you see winning the Stanley Cup this season?

[PHT PREDICTIONS: EASTERN CONFERENCE / WESTERN CONFERENCE]

STANLEY CUP CHAMPION

SEAN: Golden Knights in 6. Mark Stone wins Conn Smythe. The window remains open for Vegas and with their core players locked up, they won’t be going anywhere over the next few years. There’s plenty in the pipeline, but for now, this team remains a contender and the aggressiveness by George McPhee, new GM Kelly McCrimmon and owner Bill Foley have ensured that their inaugural was not a one-off.

JAMES: Lightning in 7. Brayden Point wins Conn Smythe. This team was a regular-season juggernaut, and while they had to do some salary cap juggling, they managed to come out the other side almost as strong. In fact, if someone like Mikhail Sergachev makes a leap, the Lightning could actually be even better — not in the standings, but when it matters the most.

JOEY: Lightning in 6. Victor Hedman wins Conn Smythe. You won’t see them put up the same crazy amount of points during the regular season this year, but they’ll win the conference and the division. They’ll also find a way to keep rolling heading into mid-April. For this to happen, they can’t afford to lose Victor Hedman, again, though. 

ADAM: Avalanche in 7. Nathan MacKinnon wins Conn Smythe. I am just going to go all in on the Avalanche this season. The only thing that might hold them back is if Philipp Grubauer isn’t up to the challenge of being a championship goalie. But I like him, I don’t think he is going to have to be a game-stealer for them, and this team looks to be as loaded on paper as anyone.

PHT’S SEASON PREVIEW:
2019-20 NHL Power Rankings
PHT’s 2019-20 season previews
Which 2019 NHL playoff teams are in danger of missing this season?
• NHL Awards, free agent busts, overhyped teams
Breakout players, bold predictions for 2019-20