Hockey East released their preseason poll for the 2022-2023 men’s hockey season with defending league champions Northeastern picked as the favorites in the league.
Hockey East 2022-23 Men’s Preseason Coaches’ PollRankTeam (1st Place Votes)Pts.
2.Boston University (1)94
The Huskies return a talented core from last year’s league champions led by Devon Levi in goal and senior forward Aidan McDonough, who opted to pass on signing with the Vancouver Canucks this summer to return to Northeastern.
Boston University was picked second, despite not receiving as many first place votes as third place UMass. The Terriers may be a bit of a wildcard here. They only finished tied for fourth in the league last year, in a disappointing campaign that ultimately led to the dismissal of head coach Albie O’Connell. There is still a lot of talent on the roster, however, and if new head coach Jay Pandolfo can synthesize and utilize that talent, they should be a pretty solid team.
UMass is ranked about the same as Boston University though they feel like the total opposite of the Terriers. The Minutemen may not have the loads of high-end talent and NHL draft picks like Boston University does, head coach Greg Carvel has proven himself excellent at getting the most out of his roster and getting them to compete at a high level.
Like last year, the middle pack of the league should once again be very competitive, with not much to choose from between the teams. Greg Brown will begin his career as head coach at Boston College replacing the legendary Jerry York with a team picked tied for fifth in the league. The Eagles have a decent team, but certainly nowhere near the talent of some of York’s national championship-caliber teams, and it will be interesting to see if Brown is able to bring them back to that level.
Last year was a bit of a down year for Hockey East on the national level. The league eventually ended up getting three teams in the national tournament, but struggles in inter-conference play meant that no team from the league finished in the top-10 nationally in the final Pairwise Rankings. They’ll need to perform better in non-conference play this year to help their national reputation, though certainly Northeastern, if not a few other teams, should be as good as any team nationally this year.