NHL Power Rankings, Who’s At The Top Right Now
The NHL Power Rankings for this week show no significant changes at the top, as the Colorado Avalanche, who have won ten straight games, remain in first place, followed by the Florida Panthers and Carolina Hurricanes. Thus far, the season has been interesting, with significant injuries, additions, and youth making an immediate impact. As the season develops, we learn about each team’s strengths and weaknesses.
The Avalanche are now on a six-game winning streak and, don’t look now, but they are assembling a goalkeeper corps. Darcy Kuemper ranks second in the NHL in goals saved above average at five-on-five over the last two weeks with 4.06.
2. Florida Panthers
All season, Florida has been forced to test the depths of it. The Panthers have faced significant injuries (to Aleksander Barkov, Sergei Bobrovsky, Anthony Duclair, among others), a club-wide outbreak of COVID-19, and patches of uneven goaltending. Still, they have fought to remain a top team in the NHL. That is the energy that Florida will require in 2022.
3. Toronto Maple Leafs
If there is one fear about the Maple Leafs at the moment, they haven’t played much hockey recently. Indeed, they have appeared in just three games since Dec. 14, making them a difficult squad to rank.
The good news is that they have appeared to be rather formidable when they have played. With players like John Tavares and William Nylander impressing thus far, perhaps this is the year they finally crack the second round.
4. New York Rangers
The Rangers have dropped to third place in the Metropolitan Division despite a seven-game winning streak and one of the franchise’s best 25-game starts (17-5-3). They scored nine goals in five games after scoring an average of four goals per game in their previous seven triumphs.
Tristan Jarry, Jake Guentzel, Evan Rodrigues, and combinations of players are what separate Pittsburgh. This type of partnership can catapult the Penguins to new heights.
5. Tampa Bay Lightning
The Lightning responded from a humiliating 5-1 loss to the Anaheim Ducks with a tremendous 7-1 victory over the San Jose Sharks, but they appear to be streaky and losing big of late. This is one of the reasons they remain below the NHL’s top five power rankings.
Despite their abundance of offensive talent, the Bolts have a +26 goal difference and a respectable.709 win percentage, despite having played more games than their divisional opponents. However, they will need to regain their consistency if they repeat as Stanley Cup champions.
However, like the Penguins, they may reignite their fire at any time, which keeps them in the NHL’s top ten power rankings.
Brad Marchand vs. the Carolina Hurricanes is the burgeoning rivalry no one anticipated. After they scored a touchdown and a PAT against the Bruins, Marchand essentially told the Canes that they needed to improve their social media game.
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