NHL Power Rankings: Where things stand after NHL trade deadline
In this week’s edition of the NHL Power Rankings we will be taking a look at where things stand in the league after the NHL Trade Deadline on Monday.
Try to look at it as a mixture of where teams are in the standings, how they are currently playing, and what their rosters look like after the additions and subtractions they’ve made.
The Avalanche hold on to the top spot, with the defending Stanley Cup champion Lightning right behind them.
Where does your team rank?
To this week’s NHL Power Rankings!
1. Colorado Avalanche. Already had what is arguably the best roster in the league. Carl Soderberg is a decent depth addition and Devan Dubnyk addresses the backup goalie situation. He may not be the player he was, but he is an upgrade over Hunter Miska and Jonas Johansson.
2. Tampa Bay Lightning. Creative work by Julien BriseBois to get David Savard at a quarter of his salary cap rate. Another strong deadline move for the second year in a row.
3. Carolina Hurricanes. A mostly quiet deadline but the Hurricanes did not need much. An outstanding team playing at an extremely high level this season.
4. Vegas Golden Knights. They did not make the big blockbuster move they have have been accustomed to making but Mattias Janmark can bring some offense to their bottom six.
5. Toronto Maple Leafs. Playing great hockey right now and they added some nice depth pieces in Nick Foligno and David Rittich. Not many weaknesses in that forward group with Foligno in the mix.
6. Washington Capitals. They paid a steep price for Anthony Mantha but he is a perfect fit for the Capitals style of play. He is also signed long-term, meaning the trade should save them salary cap space over the next two years as Jakub Vrana was due for a significant raise this offseason.
[Related: Mantha makes Capitals even bigger]
7. Pittsburgh Penguins. Jeff Carter gives Mike Sullivan a lot of lineup flexibility and options to work with. He can play wing, he can be the third line center, and he did not cost them much of anything.
8. New York Islanders. Kyle Palmieri is a great Anders Lee replacement. Maybe not the same type of player exactly, but a really good fit for the way the Islanders play.
9. Florida Panthers. There is nothing wrong with adding Brandon Montour or Sam Bennett, but given the salary cap space and their success this season I would have liked to have seen them go for a bigger score. Still an excellent team.
10. Boston Bruins. The expectations for Taylor Hall right now are as low as they have ever been, which explains the low price to acquiring him. I am expecting a big stretch run from him in a better situation.
11. Minnesota Wild. Bill Guerin and the Wild are rolling with the roster they have. The good news is it is a pretty good roster.
12. Winnipeg Jets. I am not sure Jordie Benn is enough of an upgrade to the defense to give them a chance against a team like Toronto in the playoffs. Or Connor McDavid.
13. Nashville Predators. Their recent surge took them out of the sellers market, but it did not really put them into the buyer market, either. Erik Gudbranson keeps changing teams for a reason.
14. Edmonton Oilers. Ken Holland’s comment about not being able to go all in every year just does not work for me. When you have Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl every year is an all in year.
15. Montreal Canadiens. Erik Gustafsson and Jon Merril give them a lot of bodies on defense, but it is debatable as to how much better it makes them. Eric Staal will be the player that makes or breaks the deadline for them. Besides their biggest addition to the lineup could be Cole Caufield.
[ProHockeyTalk’s 2021 NHL Trade Tracker]
16. St. Louis Blues. The Blues are banking on the idea that the roster they have can turn it around. Given their schedule that is going to be a challenge. If they do, they will have earned it.
17. New York Rangers. Other than trading Brendan Lemieux the Rangers stayed quiet. That is okay though because trading him opened the roster spot for Vitali Kravtsov.
18. Philadelphia Flyers. Scott Laughton is a nice player, but a five-year term for a third-liner is always risky.
19. Dallas Stars. Injuries and COVID have played havoc on their season. Their biggest advantage for the stretch run is the games in hand. But they have to win.
20. Chicago Blackhawks. They had a decent trade deadline in terms of collecting assets and some future picks, but it is hard to say they are better in the short-term for a playoff push.
21. Arizona Coyotes. They have the scheduling edge over St. Louis and San Jose in that playoff race. Can they take advantage of it?
22. San Jose Sharks. I don’t know that trading Devan Dubnyk hurts their playoff chances, but they also did not really do anything to improve them. Smart move to buy an extra draft pick in the Mattias Janmark trade.
23. Calgary Flames. Their trade deadline activity indicates they have thrown in the towel on this season. For good reason.
24. Vancouver Canucks. Not much to judge here lately. The most important thing is everybody being healthy. The trade deadline activity does not really impact the short-term or long-term outlook. The Tanner Pearson re-signing, though, is a curious move.
[Related: Winners And Losers Of The 2021 NHL Trade Deadline]
25. Los Angeles Kings. They could get hit pretty hard on cap recapture penalties if Jeff Carter retires after this season, but they have cap space to work with and picked up a couple of future assets. Re-signing Alex Iafallo is a nice move as he should fit in with their short-term future.
26. Columbus Blue Jackets. Getting two first-round picks for Nick Foligno and David Savard is great asset management. That is promising for the future. The remaining roster for this season is significantly weaker.
27. Detroit Red Wings. If they were going to trade Anthony Mantha, they managed to get a great return for him.
28. New Jersey Devils. They lost a lot from this current roster but Jack Hughes looks more and more like a star every game. So they have that going for them.
29. Ottawa Senators. The only thing that matters here is just continuing to see the young players develop.
30. Anaheim Ducks. They still seem to be stuck in that no-man’s land of needing to rebuild without fully committing to it.
31. Buffalo Sabres. They have played a lot better since the coaching change, but this is still a team that is way too far away from seriously contending.