Over the next few days, I will be looking at each team in the NHL and identifying a couple of players in particular that fit into one of two categories based on the once popular kids game, Chutes and Ladders. The players in the “chutes” category will be players who exceeded expectations last season, and will have a difficult time avoiding a slide in the coming season. The “ladder” category will consist of players who are ready to climb a level in their play and step up a notch. Feel free to brows back to see previous teams, and look for more teams in the coming days.
Chutes: Ray Whitney – At 41, Whitney started to break down a little last season and the diminuative winger has put a lot of hard miles on his body. Still, he wound up 4th on the Stars in scoring, but the team that takes the ice in October will be far different from the one that started the season in January. Whitney could be the veteran to get lost in that shuffle.
Ladders: Alex Goligoski – The blueliner’s best seasons came when he was in Pittsburgh with Sergei Gonchar as his partner. Now that they have been re-united in the Big D, much will be expected of Goligoski.