We’re a month and a half into the 2019-2020 NHL season and things are starting to clear up a bit. The truly outstanding teams are starting to find their rhythm while the mediocre ones are fading into obscurity. While there’s still quite a bit of hockey to play, we’re getting an idea of who will likely be making their way to the playoffs, and who will be heading home early. Here are a few of the most impressive teams thus far.

New York Islanders

These East Coast players boast one of the best records in the Eastern Conference, and that’s partly due to their incredibly impressive defense; more specifically, their top two blueliners Ryan Pulock and Adam Pelech, are making outstanding plays. Additionally, credit must be given when due, and Barry Trotz deserves a great deal of it. His play calling and management style are prepping this team for a major postseason run.

Boston Bruins

The New England city is proving its sports dominance yet again, this time with its hockey team carrying an impressive 13-3 record. And while the record is impressive on its own, the Bruins’ goaltender, Jaroslav Halak, deserves a large portion of the credit. After starting 8 games, Halak has gone 4-1-3 and has a .924 save percentage.

Carolina Hurricanes

The Hurricanes are putting together a valiant effort, with their rookie center, Martin Necas, making his presence felt in the league. Unfortunately for the Hurricanes, they have been dealing with a variety of forward injuries, Necas has been performing and stepping up to the plate. In fact, the 21-year-old has scored 15 points in his first 21 games. A very promising start.

The NHL seems to be stacked with major contenders this year. It’s shaping up to be a fun season, and I can’t wait to see what teams pull away into the playoffs. My suggestion, keep an eye on these teams, and their key players. Chances are, you’re going to be hearing a lot about them for the next couple of months.