NHL Power Rankings: Which team is next in ‘Succession’ for the Stanley Cup?

Pittsburgh, Washington, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Colorado — which team will be the last team standing in 2023? Which team will follow Colorado? Which team will be left to sit on the throne?

Which team will be next in … Succession?

It’s been a while since we did one of these bits where we awkwardly tie hockey together with some Big Pop Culture Thing. But this one feels right with how easy it is to imagine an NHL front office run like Waystar Royco. With the series finale of HBO’s “Succession: airing on Sunday and the Stanley Cup Final in sight it’s also perfect timing to blend these two worlds together. Hey, it’s better than another Taylor Swift edition, right?

So here’s the deal: with the help of Twitter account @nocontextroyco — a “Succession” fan account that tweets out-of-context screenshots from the show — we’re going to match a scene from the show with each team in the league. The idea is imagining that this scene from “Succession” could play out just as well in the front office of each team.

The twist? Sean doesn’t watch “Succession” so for him, all of these screencaps really are going to be out of context and we’re going to see how well he can put them into a hockey context.

Lastly — we recognize The Athletic, our lovely home, is a Family Website and that “Succession” is … absolutely not. But fear not, all the saltier language has been censored.

Last Week: 1
Won series with Carolina 4-0
Sean rank: 1
Dom rank: 1


Bonus, part two

Sean: Just opened up our planning document. He really did it, huh? We’re rolling here. OK. That top frame is Brian Cox talking to a Culkin, I assume. Maybe The New Yorker profile guy. One of his sons. I’ve absorbed enough of this show through cultural osmosis to make quasi-credible guesses. But yeah, I’m assuming that’s Keith Tkachuk talking to Matthew. No. 2 is Cameron from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” assuming the form of Paul Maurice. No. 3 is … the Panthers in general, I guess, after the Prince of Wales Trophy presentation.

Dom: See, we’re already learning stuff. I, somehow, had no idea that was Cameron from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”

Mostly bang on, but it’s also us talking to Matthew because Matthew is also our Number One Boy. There’s also this from Laz on the Panthers having FUN.

Last Week: 3
Up 3-1 against Dallas
Sean rank: 2
Dom rank: 2

Sean: Is this the married couple who hates each other? Can’t imagine them caring much about the salary cap. Very Vegas.

Dom: That is not the married couple that hates each other. To be honest, I don’t even remember who those people are. But yes. Wrong formula, right answer.

3. Dallas Stars

Last Week: 2
Down 3-1 against Vegas
Sean rank: 3
Dom rank: 3

Sean: Seems like Brian Cox and The New Yorker profile guy are trying to convince themselves of something here, sort of like Jamie Benn did after magnets pulled his stick into Mark Stone’s neck.

4. Carolina Hurricanes

Last Week: 4
Lost series with Florida 4-0
Sean rank: 4
Dom rank: 4

Sean: Might as well be Rod Brind’Amour after the Hurricanes were swept. Faith in the process, things of that nature.


Sean: Standard complaint about whichever Computer Boy is acting up on a given day.

Bonus, part two

Sean: This feels like Homework: The Power Rankings Post.

Dom: Don’t lie, you love it.

Last Week: 5
Lost series with Vegas 4-2
Sean rank: 5
Dom rank: 5

Sean: My man is looking at the Oilers’ five-on-five results over the course of the season.


Sean: I dunno. Assuming this is a stock nosedive after ol’ boy dies.

Dom: Spoiler alert. Also a metaphor for a potential nosedive if Connor McDavid ever leaves Edmonton.

Last Week: 6
Lost series with Dallas 4-3
Sean rank: 6
Dom rank: 7

Sean: The Kraken are this guy!

Last Week: 7
Lost series with Florida 4-1
Sean rank: 7
Dom rank: 6

Immediate playoff aftermath

One week later


Bonus, part two

Sean: Pass.

Dom: Boo.

Last Week: 8
Lost series with Carolina 4-1
Sean rank: 8
Dom rank: 8

Sean: Her name is Shiv, I know that. She’s feeling good about herself, as I assume the Devils are.

Last Week: 9
Lost series with Florida 4-3
Sean rank: 9
Dom rank: 8

Sean: Brian Cox has become Patrice Bergeron now, I see.

Dom: Pavel Zacha and Charlie Coyle are the Roy children of first-line center options.


10. Colorado Avalanche

Last Week: 10
Lost series with Seattle 4-3
Sean rank: 8
Dom rank: 9

Sean: Is this lady actually a mess? Because the Avs aren’t … not a mess.

Dom: She’s maybe the least messy in a show full of messy people, so that’s basically still the Avs.

Last Week: 11
Lost series with Toronto 4-2
Sean rank: 11
Dom rank: 11

Sean: Brian Cox has now assumed the form of the Tampa Bay Lightning. That guy at the top? Condescending Leafs fans after the first round.

Last Week: 12
Lost series with New Jersey 4-3
Sean rank: 13
Dom rank: 12

Sean: I dunno, man. The New Yorker guy is wearing a hat now.

Dom: Not going to lie, I was a bit low on options for the Rangers. The fans just seem a bit … melodramatic after the first-round exit.

Last Week: 13
Lost series with Edmonton 4-2
Sean rank: 12
Dom rank: 13

Sean: Dom is one of our foremost Kings haters, so I assume Shiv is him here.

Dom: Again, I would like to formally apologize to the Los Angeles Kings community and the Vladislav Gavrikov family specifically for a year’s worth of slander.

Last Week: 14
Lost series with Dallas 4-2
Sean rank: 14
Dom rank: 14

Sean: Congrats to the Wild’s center depth chart for making an appearance on the show.


Sean: For some time in late April, yes.

15. New York Islanders

Last Week: 15
Lost series with Carolina 4-2
Sean rank: 15
Dom rank: 15

Sean: Rich people, looking at the Islanders’ CapFriendly page.

Last Week: 16
Lost series with Vegas 4-1
Sean rank: 16
Dom rank: 16

Sean: Brian Cox as Rick Bowness. This one really fits, even though I doubt he loves anyone in the Jets room all that much.

Dom: Exactly.

Last Week: 17
Record: 42-33-7
Sean rank: 17
Dom rank: 17

Sean: Did this precipitate an actual positive change for Shiv? Because the Sabres are close.

Dom: Tune in to HBO — errr Max??? — this Sunday to find out!

18. Ottawa Senators

Last Week: 18
Record: 39-35-8
Sean rank: 18
Dom rank: 18

Sean: What’s the biggest ask that would accelerate the Sens’ plan, I wonder. Are Shiv and her hated husband talking about Connor Hellebuyck?

Last Week: 19
Record: 38-27-17
Sean rank: 19
Dom rank: 19

Sean: Good luck to Craig Conroy, who should’ve already set up one of these.

20. Pittsburgh Penguins

Last Week: 20
Record: 40-31-11
Sean rank: 20
Dom rank: 20

Sean: I tapped the walls at the Penguins’ practice facility, and this was an actual selling point for Kyle Dubas.

Last Week: 21
Record: 38-37-7
Sean rank: 21
Dom rank: 21

Dom: Sorry, couldn’t pick just one here.

Sean: Third one works best for me.

Last Week: 22
Record: 35-37-10
Sean rank: 22
Dom rank: 22

Sean: Honestly not sure. Too low on gas to figure it out. Is that a draft lottery joke?

Dom: This is about signing Andrew Copp, Ben Chiarot and Ville Husso last summer for a combined price of $15.1 million.

Last Week: 23
Record: 37-38-7
Sean rank: 23
Dom rank: 23

Sean: Jimmy Cromwell, talking about Robert Thomas and company.

Dom: Don’t lump in Thomas with the actual waste on this roster!

Last Week: 24
Record: 42-32-8
Sean rank: 24
Dom rank: 24


Sean: Brian Cox is Barry Trotz!

Last Week: 25
Record: 31-45-6
Sean rank: 25
Dom rank: 25

Sean: Pretty self-explanatory here, I think. Habs gotta win at least a few games next season.

Last Week: 26
Record: 25-48-9
Sean rank: 27
Dom rank: 26

Sean: Hmm — one of Patrik Laine’s suits?

Dom: Or Patrik Laine in the defensive zone. Either or. (Editor’s note: Yes, we know Laine was much improved defensively this season.)

Last Week: 27
Record: 35-37-10
Sean rank: 26
Dom rank: 29

Sean: Is this a Tom Wilson reference? I kind of forgot about him.

Dom: Tom is one half of the couple that hates each other, so nothing specific to Tom Wilson — just the team as a whole. But yeah, it works for him too.

Last Week: 28
Record: 31-38-13
Sean rank: 28
Dom rank: 28

Sean: Maybe Danny Briere has been the Culkin this whole time! To the big boy chair, we go!


Sean: Keith Jones, opening each of his 500 interviews over the last couple weeks.

Last Week: 29
Record: 28-40-14
Sean rank: 30
Dom rank: 27

Sean: Good luck, as always, to Valley hockey fans.

Dom: Pack, what do we think of the new Twitter admin?

Last Week: 30
Record: 23-47-12
Sean rank: 29
Dom rank: 30

Sean: Worst unis in the league, going strong.

Last Week: 31
Record: 22-44-16
Sean rank: 31
Dom rank: 31

Sean: Doug Wilson filling out his roster in 2017?

Dom: Bingo.

Last Week: 32
Record: 26-49-7
Sean rank: 32
Dom rank: 32

Sean: This dude’s name is Connor, I think (not Cameron), and he’s supposed to be Connor Bedard. This one is good.


Sean: Yep.

(Top photo: Josh Lavallee / NHLI via Getty Images)