NHL Future Power Rankings

9/19/2013 - NHL Jonathan Toews Patrick Kane Corey Crawford Patrick Sharp Marian Hossa Duncan Keith Niklas Hjalmarsson Gustav Nyquist Brendan Smith Joakim Andersson Tomas Tatar Calle Jarnkrok Teemu Pulkkinen Danny DeKeyser Pavel Datsyuk Henrik Zetterberg Johan Franzen Sidney Crosby Evgeni Malkin Kris Letang Torey Krug Tuukka Rask Brendan Gallagher Alex Galchenyuk Carey Price Nathan Beaulieu Michael McCarron Jarred Tinordi P.K. Subban Saku Koivu Teemu Selanne Jakob Silfverberg John Gibson Hampus Lindholm Emerson Etem Cam Fowler Jake Gardiner Francois Beauchemin Justin Schultz Valeri Nichushkin Jack Campbell Alex Chiasson Jamie Oleksiak Jamie Benn Alex Goligoski Tyler Seguin Bobby Ryan Erik Karlsson Jared Cowen Kyle Turris Mike Richards Jeff Carter Ryan Strome Griffin Reinhart Ryan Pulock Calvin de Haan Matt Donovan John Tavares Kyle Okposo Frans Nielsen Travis Hamonic Vladimir Tarasenko Jaden Schwartz Dmitrij Jaskin Alex Pietrangelo Jaroslav Halak Brian Elliott Mikhail Grabovski Alex Ovechkin Pekka Rinne Shea Weber Ryan Suter Valtteri Filppula Matt Carle Jonathan Drouin Matt Duchene Gabriel Landeskog Nathan MacKinnon Zach Bogosian Evander Kane Andrew Ladd Dustin Byfuglien Patrick Marleau Joe Thornton Dan Boyle Tomas Hertl Logan Couture Zach Parise Jason Pominville Nikita Zadorov Rick Nash Brad Richards Nathan Horton Eric Staal Jordan Staal Alexander Semin Jeff Skinner Cory Schneider Phil Kessel Dion Phaneuf Morgan Rielly Vincent Lecavalier Mark Streit Chris Pronger Scott Hartnell Martin Brodeur Ilya Kovalchuk David Clarkson Chicago Blackhawks Detroit Red Wings Dallas Stars Pittsburgh Penguins Boston Bruins Montreal Canadiens Anaheim Ducks Toronto Maple Leafs Edmonton Oilers Ottawa Senators Los Angeles Kings New York Islanders Tampa Bay Lightning St. Louis Blues Washington Capitals Nashville Predators Minnesota Wild Buffalo Sabres Colorado Avalanche Florida Panthers Calgary Flames Winnipeg Jets San Jose Sharks Phoenix Coyotes New York Rangers Columbus Blue Jackets Carolina Hurricanes Vancouver Canucks New Jersey Devils Philadelphia Flyers + more
Patrick Kane, Steven Stamkos and Tuukka Rask are poised to be stars for seasons to come. ESPN Illustration

One of the most impressive things about the Blackhawks winning the 2013 Stanley Cup was that they became the first franchise to win it twice in the salary-cap era. And they did so in a short period of time.

Today's NHL is driven by a parity-inducing cap, which forces teams to part ways with assets they'd usually prefer to keep. In those conditions, it's hard to stand out season after season when tough decisions have to be made simply because of finances. Dynasties are dead ... or at least that's what we thought before last season.

At least 10 teams could make a strong case at winning the Stanley Cup this season, with the usual factors playing a big part -- health, goaltending, maybe a little luck.

But what goes into projecting success three seasons from now? It's a different formula predicting how strong teams will look in 2016-17. Nevertheless, positioning their teams for sustained success is precisely what NHL general managers seek to do each season. And that begs the question: Which teams are best positioned for the seasons ahead? To find the answer, we now debut the NHL Future Power Rankings.

To construct the rankings, we consulted with former NHL assistant general manager Frank Provenzano, who helped develop our categories -- as well as how they were weighted -- based upon his experience working in the front office for multiple NHL teams.

Then we asked a panel of six analysts to rate every NHL team in four key categories deemed most important to future success: roster, prospects, cap/contracts, owner/GM/coach.

Using a weighted formula -- illustrated in the sidebar to the right -- the final rankings were calculated. What follows is a ranking of the teams best positioned for success from now heading into the 2016-17 season, and analysis on why they find themselves in that position.

The Panel: ESPN Insider Craig Custance; former NHL assistant GM Frank Provenzano; advanced metrics guru Neil Greenberg; prospect analyst Corey Pronman; and Ryan Schwepfinger and Rob Vollman of Hockey Prospectus.

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Chicago Blackhawks

The bar graphs reflect the average points given by the voters for each category.