Another week has passed by which means it’s time once again for NHL power rankings. This week, they are many teams that are streaking, one way or the other, which makes for some interesting movement this week. As always, a loss or win doesn’t necessarily mean that one team will be ranked higher than a team they beat or lost to. Without further ado, here we go.
Numbers in parentheses reference last week’s rankings and all stats are current as of 1/30.
No.32: Montreal Canadiens (+0)
The Canadiens are on a three-game losing streak. They are also 1-6-3 in their last ten. That’s all the justification needed. Next.
No.31: Arizona Coyotes (+0)
The Coyotes are on a five-game losing streak, which made things interesting between Montreal and Arizona. They are 3-6-1 in their last ten. The moral of the story, both these teams are horrendous. Next.
No.30: New Jersey Devils (-5)
The Devils are also on a losing streak of four games which drops them to 30. Their goals against per game still sit at an average of 3.40, but they are now seventh-worst in that category. At least Jesper Bratt will be heading to the All-Star Game.
No.29: Philadelphia Flyers (+1)
The Flyers have finally won a game.. It’s a miracle ladies and gentlemen. That doesn’t change the fact that they are tied for ninth-worst in goals against per game averaging 3.34 goals, and sixth-worst in goals for per game averaging 2.50 goals. Say goodbye to Claude Giroux, Flyers fans.
No.28: Seattle Kraken (+2)
The Kraken move up this week out of the bottom three for the first time in a while. They are still struggling with their offense. Averaging 2.61 goals per game, eighth-worst in the league. That is an improvement but man their defense is a wreck averaging 3.52 goals against per game, the fourth-worst in the league.
No.27: Ottawa Senators (+1)
The Senators move up a spot this week to 27. Their defense has made a massive improvement, however, averaging 3.39 goals against per game, which is eighth-worst but it is still an improvement from last week. Losing Drake Batherson will be a tough pill to swallow for this team offensively so watch for those numbers to come down.
No.26: Buffalo Sabres (+1)
The Sabres also move up a spot this week. Their offense has actually suffered a setback averaging 2.60 goals per game seventh-worst in the league, but their defense has improved slightly averaging 3.42 goals against, but they still sit sixth-worst despite that small improvement.
No.25: New York Islanders (-1)
The Islanders fall a spot this week to 25. On a two-game losing streak, they have one of the best defenses in the league tied for fifth-best in the NHL in goals against per game averaging 2.65 goals but is averaging 2.38 goals per game, third-worst in that category. It’s a tale of two sides for the Island Boys.
No. 24: Columbus Blue Jackets (+2)
The Blue Jackets are on a two-game winning streak and move up two spots this week. Their offense has been slowly but surely getting better, but their defense has gotten worse now averaging 3.59 goals against per game, third-worst in the NHL.
No.23: Chicago Blackhawks (+0)
The Blackhawks stay put this week. They are 5-3-2 in their last ten, but their defense has taken a slight step backward dropping into the bottom ten in goals against per game. They are
tied for ninth-worst in that category with the Flyers averaging 3.34 goals.
No.22: Winnipeg Jets (-6)
The Jets have been struggling and struggling hard. While statistically, they are a middle-of-the-pack team, they are 3-5-2 in their last ten games, which puts them down six spots this week, but it shouldn’t be long before they’re back closer to 17.
No.21: Detroit Red Wings (-1)
The Red Wings continue to slide down this week a spot to 21. Their defense has declined quite a bit, now fifth-worst in goals against per game averaging 3.44 goals. Their offense is still tied for ninth-worst in goals for per game, but the average has increased to 2.73 goals.
No.20: Vancouver Canucks (+1)
The Canucks stay put this week, but they could be heading for a big slide down next week. Their defense has completely turned around behind the strong net play of Thatcher Demko averaging 2.68 goals against per game, the eighth-best in that category in the NHL. However, their offense continues to struggle, averaging 2.43 goals against per game, fourth-worst in that category.
No.19: San Jose Sharks (-3)
The Sharks make the second biggest decrease on the rankings so far falling down to 19. Their defense is slowly but surely crawling closer to getting in that bottom ten range for goals against per game, but their offense is still in rough shape tied for ninth-worst in goals for per game with the Red Wings averaging 2.73 goals, which is an increase albeit ever so slightly.
No.18: Dallas Stars (+0)
The Stars stay in place this week at 18. The main thing holding this team back is their offense. It’s been getting better as of late which is a good sign. Tyler Seguin looks to be playing better since moving back to center, and Joe Pavelski is heading to the All-Star game as the Central Divison captain. Which is rightfully so with 48 points in 41 games for Pavelski.
No.17: Edmonton Oilers (+6)
It is truly amazing what a four-game winning streak can do for a team. The Oilers’ situation was looking grim but they’ve started to turn things around. Both their goals for and against per game sit at 3.30 goals on average, but one is top ten in the league while the other is near the bottom ten. If the Oilers want to be back in contention again, they need to improve their goaltending, plain and simple.
No.16: Calgary Flames (+3)
The Flames shoot up the rankings this week after their cooldown one week ago. Their offense has gotten better, but the true improvement has been in their defense. Already one of the best in the league, they improved to the second-best in the league in goals against per game averaging 2.48 goals.
No.15: Los Angeles Kings (-1)
The Kings kick off the top 15 this week, falling one spot. Their offense is still in the middle of the league statistically, but their defense is right outside the top ten in goals against per game thanks to the renaissance of Jonathan Quick, who looks like the goalie he was during the Kings’ magical Stanley Cup run.
No.14: Boston Bruins (-3)
The Bruins stay in the top 15 this week, barely. They do take a big slide. Not necessarily through any fault of their own but there are quite a few teams that are hot in front of them. However, they are also statistically a more middle-of-the-pack team. By the way, check out Jack Gaffney’s Bruins All-Time Team.
No.13: Anaheim Ducks (+2)
The Ducks climb their way up to 13 this week. A middle-of-the-pack team statistically, the Ducks are also on a two-game winning streak. Also, Trevor Zegras continues to impress and Troy Terry will be heading to Vegas for the All-Star Game.
No.12: Washington Capitals (+0)
For the third week in a row, the Capitals stay at 12. Washington has been struggling to find form recently and their offense has slipped out of the top ten in goals per game. But their defense is still strong, sitting at seventh-best in goals against per game averaging 2.67 goals. In the weekly Ovi Watch update, Alex Ovechkin is now seven goals away from tying Jaromir Jagr for third in all-time goal scoring.
No.11: Vegas Golden Knights (+2)
The Golden Knights just barely miss out on getting back into the top 10 this week. Their offense is struggling as of late now tied for eighth-best in goals for per game averaging 3.31 goals.
No.10: Nashville Predators (-2)
The Predators fall out of the top ten this week through no fault of their own. There are plenty of hot teams in the league right now. Juuse Saros continues to strengthen his Vezina Trophy case as the Predators are currently ninth-best in goals against per game averaging 2.69 goals.
No.9: Pittsburgh Penguins (-7)
The Penguins become the latest victim of hot teams. Their massive drop is more because of the end of their winning streak than anything else. Tristan Jarry has continued to be phenomenal too, so this shouldn’t be a long turnaround until the Pens are back in the top five.
No.8: St. Louis Blues (+0)
No.7: New York Rangers (-2)
The Rangers fall out of the top five this week. Despite how anyone feels about the no-goal call at the end of their loss to the Wild, the Rangers can’t depend on Igor Shesterkin to win them every game. They need to score more plain and simple. Also, congratulations to the king, Henrik Lundqvist on his number retirement. Well deserved.
No.6: Tampa Bay Lightning (-4)
For the first time in quite some time, the Lightning isn’t second this week falling to sixth. The main reason for this is all of the top five teams are on different winning streaks. Their offense is still elite, but their defense could do with a little touching up.
No.5: Toronto Maple Leafs (+2)
The Maple Leafs come back into the top five this week. On a three-game winning streak, the Leafs are heating up at the right time and getting contributions from everyone. Their offense is in the top five in goals for per game, and their goals against per game is just on the outside of the top five.
No.4: Minnesota Wild (+6)
Well, hello again Minnesota. On a five-game winning streak currently, the Wild are hot. They have gotten a point in every game they’ve had since the Winter Classic. Let that sink in. The Winter Classic was a wakeup call for this team, and they took it very seriously. Also, how impressive has Matt Boldy been?
No.3: Florida Panthers (+1)
The longest reigning top team in the power rankings this year have found their way back into the top three this week. On a three-game winning streak, their defense has suffered a bit because of their struggles as their goals against per game is now outside of the top ten. But their offense is still lethal, and Andrew Brunette should get some consideration for the Jack Adams Award.
No.2: Carolina Hurricanes (+4)
Here they are, rocking like the Hurricanes. Back in the number two slot, the Hurricanes are also riding a four-game winning streak. On defense, they still reign supreme in goals against per game, averaging 2.93 goals and they’re still top five in goals for per game.
No.1: Colorado Avalanche (+0)
The Avalanche are on a ten-game winning streak. That’s the argument. Plus they are also on top of the league in goals per game averaging 4.14 goals. Losing Nathan MacKinnon will certainly sting, but the Avs have enough on offense where that shouldn’t be a problem. Taking them off the top spot could prove to be a difficult task, especially at Ball Arena.
Follow Carson Babbini on Twitter @cbabs1120
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