NHL Power Rankings Week 16: Southern Teams on the Move

This week, Tampa Bay and Nashville make their moves while the West reshuffles itself again. In the same order it did last week. Strange.

Eastern Conference


This Week Last Week Rationale
Rating
Flyers_medium 1 1
The Flyers enter the break in first place in the NHL with 71 points. They've gone 8-2-0 in their last 10 games. They have a league-best 1.43 five-on-five ratio, and a league-best plus-44 goal differential. Yes, they're in first here too.
2.002
 Bruins_medium
2
2
Boston isn't far behind Philadelphia in 5-on-5 (1.42) or goal differential (plus-39), but they are ten points back in the standings (61 points). The two-point lead they have on Montreal is worrisome, but the Bruins are much better than the Canadiens.
1.739
 Penguins_medium
3
3
The Penguins are in the middle of life without Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, yet they are still 6-3-1 in their last ten. They lost some ground to the Bruins, but they are still among the league's elite.
1.575
Capitals_medium
4
4
Washington went 2-0-1 last week, but they continue to lack consistency. Only scoring 7 goals in three games may have led to 5 out of 6 points last week, but that won't happen often.
1.305
Canadiens_medium
5
6
The Canadiens are in 7th in the East, but they've jumped over the injury-riddled Rangers this week. Going 1-1-1 isn't enough itself, but a 7-1 thumping of Ottawa went a long way.
1.230
Rangers_medium 6
5
New York had a busy week, going 1-2-2 (though they won both shootouts) to get 6 out of 10 possible points. Not bad for a team treading water until they get healthy again.
1.185
Lightning_medium
7
9
The Lightning finally make a move up the power rankings. An even goal differential and a 0.91 five-on-five ratio are still less-than-optimal, but they've come a long way from earlier in the year. Going 2-0-2, getting all 8 possible points helps. A 7-1 win over Atlanta helps even more.
1.106
Panthers_medium 8
8
The Panthers went 1-1-2 last week. The only game where they didn't get points was against New Jersey, which definitely hurts. A 4-3-3 record in their last 10 just isn't cutting it. They may be a good 5-on-5 team, even a great 4-on-5 team, but their atrocious power play is keeping them from winning.
1.058
Thrashers_medium 9
7
Atlanta was the big loser this week, to Tampa's benefit. Why? A 7-1 loss to Tampa Bay was essentially the reason these two teams swapped places, and Atlanta is barely hanging on to a playoff spot at this point.
0.979
Sabres_medium 10
10
The Sabres went 3-1-0 last week, including a big win over Boston, but they are are four points out with two games in hand. The playoffs are within reach, but they'll need to continue improving and get some luck from those ahead of them.
0.978
Hurricanes_medium 11
11
Carolina is now only a point out of the playoffs with two games in hand. They're improving, and they have a good chance to leap over Atlanta in the coming weeks.
0.949
Maple_leafs_medium
12
12
We get to the bottom of the East with Toronto, as everyone above them are very much alive in the playoff race. Going 1-4 last week must have been embarrassing, but after starting the week with a 7-0 loss to the Rangers, it couldn't have been worse than that game.
0.645
Senators_medium 13
13
You know things are bad when your only All-Star representative, upon hearing that he's going, asks "How?". But try looking on the bright side, Down Goes Brown style.
0.554
Islanders_medium
14
14
The Islanders were able to hold the Capitals and Penguins to a combined 3 goals last week, but lost both games. The state of Islanders hockey is depressing.
0.503
Devils_medium 
15 15
The Devils continue winning. It's strange. The Flyers and Penguins combined for only 1 goal against the Devils, who are... still 20 points out of the playoffs.
0.433

 

Western Conference


This Week Last Week Rationale
Rating
Canucks_medium
1 1
The Canucks continue to be the best team in the West, even though they lost two shootouts last week. No need to worry, they followed it up with a 7-1 thumping of Dallas.
1.805
Red_wings_medium
2
2
Detroit tried to get Evgeni Nabokov through waivers to help them out, but it didn't work. And it probably wouldn't have helped when you only score one goal against Chicago.
1.447
Stars_medium
3
3
Dallas may have a relatively marginal goal differential (8) but they have solid 5-on-5 play, a very good power play, and an average penalty kill. Improve the PK a bit and the Stars will join the ranks of the elite.
1.324
 Predators_medium 4
7
The Predators make a jump, but a 1-1-1 week is not why they did. The crowded West allows for teams to make quick movements, but Nashville is in 4th place, has a plus-16 goal differential, and is 7-3 in their last 10.
1.278
Blackhawks_medium 5
4
Chicago took advantage of an injured Red Wings club before losing to Philadelphia and Minnesota. They still have a superb goal differential and a solid 5-on-5 ratio, but they just can't consistently secure points.
1.230
Coyotes_medium 6
6
Phoenix remains in 6th place in the West despite two one-goal losses to L.A. and Edmonton. They'll need to improve their special teams play to above average before they can play with the West's elite, though.
1.199
Avalanche_medium 7
5
The Avalanche were the big losers this week, getting outscored by 7 goals. Big losses to Nashville and Boston set them back, but they are still within striking distance of 5th place in the West.
1.190
Kings_medium 8
8
The Kings are in 11th place despite going 2-1 last week. They're three points out of the playoffs with a game in hand, but they have a superb goal differential and the same 5-on-5 ratio as Detroit. Wait for this team to make a run.
1.120
Wild_medium 9
10
A strange thing happened this week: The four teams ranked 9, 10, 11, and 12 shuffled in the exact same way they did last week. Yes, the West is just that close.
1.055
Sharks_medium 10
12
The Sharks move up a pair of spots, but they are within two points of sixth place, with a game in hand. Going 1-0-1 last week helped, getting all 4 points possible, though.
0.966
Blues_medium 11
9
The Blues only got one point out of a possible six, and they drop as a result. Their poor power play and below average 5-on-5 ratio need to improve if they want to get out of 13th place.
0.930
Ducks_medium
12
11
Anaheim may be in 5th in the standings, but they are relying heavily on their power play for offense. They also have the most games played in the league, so their place in the standings is inflated. The worst 5-on-5 ratio of any playoff team is a bad sign.
0.915
Flames_medium 13
13
Looking at 5-on-5 ratio, Calgary is 17th best in the league. Look at penalty killing, and they are 16th. But their 24th ranked power play and 25th best points per game ratio are hurting them. A lot.
0.892
Blue_jackets_medium 14
14
Sadly, personal favorite Matt Calvert was sent back to the AHL today. But it's because Matt Calvert doesn't take breaks. He'll be back in Columbus next week to impress once again.
0.873
Oilers_medium
15 15
The Oilers continue to be decent at 5-on-5, but their awful special teams and miserable goal differential will keep them in the basement once again.
0.632

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