NHL Power Rankings: Oilers, Wild, Maple Leafs keep climbing
In this week’s edition of the NHL Power Rankings the Carolina Hurricanes regain the top spot in their weekly back-and-forth battle with the Florida Panthers, the Edmonton Oilers inch their way to the top, and the Toronto Maple Leafs continue their recent climb.
At the other end of the spectrum it is a tough week for the Pittsburgh Penguins, and the Vancouver Canucks, while the Arizona Coyotes remain at the bottom.
We take a look at all of those teams and everybody in between.
Where does your team rank?
To this week’s NHL Power Rankings!
1. Carolina Hurricanes (Last Week: 2). Have they cooled off a little over the past week-and-half? Maybe. But they still have the league’s best record, best goal differential, and look like a real Stanley Cup challenger.
2. Edmonton Oilers (LW: 3). Still not sure how much I trust this team after the top two guys (Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl) but you can not ignore this start. They are banking points in a weak division. That will help them in the long run.
3. Minnesota Wild (LW: 6). They are off to one of the best starts in franchise history and only getting mediocre goaltending while Kirill Kaprizov has not really gone off yet.
4. Toronto Maple Leafs (LW: 9). With wins in eight of their past nine games that 2-4-1 start already seems like it was an eternity ago.
5. Washington Capitals (LW: 12). Alex Ovechkin is still unstoppable. They are on a roll without Nicklas Backstrom, T.J. Oshie, and Anthony Mantha in the lineup right now.
[Related: Ovechkin passes Hull for fourth place on NHL all-time goal scoring list]
6. Tampa Bay Lightning (LW: 7). Oh yeah, these guys. They are still pretty good in case you forgot. Even without Nikita Kucherov they are still on a 5-0-2 run over their past seven games.
7. Florida Panthers (LW: 1). Not going to worry too much about the recent losing streak. Every team hits a rut at some point. This is still an outstanding team.
8. St. Louis Blues (LW: 5). Vladimir Tarasenko is back to being an impact player. Being healthy helps.
9. Winnipeg Jets (LW: 11). They made some important additions to their defense and now this team looks like a sneaky contender. Kyle Connor is fantastic and Pierre-Luc Dubois might be having that breakout season.
10. New York Rangers (LW: 14). Their underlying numbers are lousy, but they have a great goalie and a couple of superstars. That will take you somewhere.
11. Vegas Golden Knights (LW: 16). Yeah, they are going to be fine. When they get healthy this will be a top-three roster on paper in the NHL.
12. Anaheim Ducks (LW: 20). John Gibson is having a much-needed bounce back season and Troy Terry -- Troy Terry?! -- is carrying the offense for the hottest NHL team right now.
13. Colorado Avalanche (LW: 18). Like Vegas, another contender that got off to a slow start that is starting to get things back on track. Do not worry about this team. At all.
14. Calgary Flames (LW: 4). Goaltending is the story here. Jacob Markstrom and Dan Vladar both have save percentages north of .934 and they have combined for five shutouts this season in only 15 games.
[Related: Are the Flames for real?]
15. Boston Bruins (LW: 17). Still do not like how dependent they are on the top line right now. That will have to change.
16. Nashville Predators (LW: 23). They are exceeding expectations so far. Juuse Saros is a big part of that. Just like he was a year ago.
17. Los Angeles Kings (LW: 23). Anze Kopitar and Jonathan Quick trying to show they still have it. Kopitar’s play this season is not a surprise. Quick’s play is.
18. New York Islanders (LW: 8). They are 27th in goals per game and sixth in goals against per game. Ah, yes. Islanders hockey.
19. Detroit Red Wings (LW: 19). For the first time in five years this team is worth watching. They are getting there.
20. Philadelphia Flyers (LW: 10). They have not had enough consistency from game-to-game. Except for the goalies. They have been great. This is like the bizarro Flyers team.
21. Columbus Blue Jackets (LW: 13). When Elvis Merzlikins plays, they are very good. When he does not play, they struggle. They will go as far as he takes them.
22. New Jersey Devils (LW: 22). It is a shame that Jack Hughes has missed almost the entire season so far because this could be an interesting team with him.
23. Pittsburgh Penguins (LW: 15). Their power play is crushing them. They are just 4-for-46 on the power play this season and have allowed two shorthanded goals.
24. Dallas Stars (LW: 25). Rick Bowness knows what the problem is. He just does not care to tell you.
[Related: Bowness confident he can fix Stars’ early-season woes]
25. Chicago Blackhawks (LW: 31). They are 3-0-0 under Derek King and have allowed only four goals. Quite a change from what we saw under Jeremy Colliton.
26. San Jose Sharks (LW: 26). Logan Couture can still produce at a high level, but this team has quickly fallen off after that 4-0 start to the season.
27. Vancouver Canucks (LW: 24). No excuse for a team with this type of young talent to be this bad with this bad of a salary cap situation. Poster child for poor roster management.
28. Buffalo Sabres (LW: 27). Wow, did that bucket of cold water arrive quickly.
29. Seattle Kraken (LW: 28). Goaltending was supposed to be this team’s strength, and it is the one thing that is absolutely crushing them right now.
30. Ottawa Senators (LW: 29). They have a fraction of a roster right now, which makes that game against Pittsburgh on Saturday night stand out even more.
31. Montreal Canadiens (LW: 31). Nick Suzuki is pretty much the only player playing to expectations right now.
32. Arizona Coyotes (LW: 32). They have played 15 games this season. They have scored zero or one goal in 10 of them. Not going to win many games that way.