NHL Power Rankings Week 18: The Stars and Avalanche Plummet; Top Teams Still On Top

This week, the Stars finally fall, the East's tightening playoff race results in some shuffling, teams are quickly being unofficially eliminated, and Buffalo looks better despite overreactions.

Can't wait until next week gets even crazier.

 

Eastern Conference


This Week Last Week Rationale
Rating
Flyers_medium 1 1
The Flyers have been sitting atop the Eastern Conference all season, and now they traded for winger Kris Versteeg. And Nikolay Zherdev continues to rot in Coach Laviolette's doghouse. Is it time to trade him? 1.871
 Bruins_medium
2
2
Boston has lost three games in a row now, but are staying above the Penguins due to their injuries. When Tyler Seguin is a healthy scratch, I think things will be okay for the Bruins.
1.682
 Penguins_medium
3
3
The Penguins got beat down by the Islanders on Friday, but won two overtime games to bookend their week. Despite their injuries, they're still treading water.
1.342
Capitals_medium 4
5
Washington moves back to the #4 spot, but they have a way to go to catch the Lightning or Penguins.
1.219
Canadiens_medium 5
4
The Canadiens lost two shootouts last week, but are still jockeying with Washington for the privilege of facing Pittsburgh in the first round.
1.167
Lightning_medium 6
6
Tampa Bay maintains their hold on 2nd place in the East despite continuing to have a negative goal differential. And negative 5-on-5 ratio. But they have gotten 15 points in their last 10 games, so watch out for them.
1.150
Sabres_medium 7
8
The Sabres look poised to move into 8th in the East, despite some people in Buffalo calling Ryan Miller a "run-of-the-mill netminder." Those people are very, very wrong.
1.071
Rangers_medium 8
7
New York boasts a very good goal differential (if it was included in the calculations, they'd be 5th in the East), but a middling 5-on-5 ratio. They've also only gotten 7 points in their last 10, so they will need to turn it around soon in order to hold off Carolina and Buffalo.
1.058
Panthers_medium 9
9
The Panthers are in the middle of a fire sale (evidenced by trading Michael Frolik at his lowest value). Could the under-appreciated pair of Stephen Weiss and Tomas Vokoun be next?
0.928
Thrashers_medium 10
10
Atlanta just over-paid for Dustin Byfuglien, and now they may be relocating. But Phoenix is an example of Gary Bettman's refusal to allow teams to relocate.
0.924
Hurricanes_medium 11
11
The Hurricanes were a trendy pick to sneak into the playoffs, and while they're still in good position in the bubble, they will need to beat out two of Atlanta, Buffalo, and NY Rangers. It's possible, but they shouldn't be confident. Ten points in ten games isn't going to be good enough.
0.920
Maple_leafs_medium
12
12
Toronto may be giving up on the season (Joffrey Lupul in, Kris Versteeg out?), but they continue to get better. And the James Reimer love is in full swing.
0.771
Devils_medium 13
13
The Devils were never as bad as they appeared at the beginning of the season (even if it was fun to laugh at them), and now they're showing it. But don't get ridiculous. They aren't making the playoffs.
0.615
Islanders_medium 14
15
New York extracted revenge on the Penguins, which crossed the line into intent to injure. But they were in the news for something that happened on the ice (without Rick DiPietro) for the first time in awhile.
0.589
Senators_medium
15 14
The Senators somehow got a second round pick for Chris Kelly. What else can they pull off this deadline?
0.537

 

Western Conference


This Week Last Week Rationale
Rating
Canucks_medium
1 1
The Canucks cling to the top spot in the NHL, but 16 points in their last ten games is pretty damn good. Even with all their injuries on defense.
1.871
Red_wings_medium
2
2
Detroit continues to stay at the top of the Western standings, and they just got good news: Brad Stuart is back from injury.
1.479
Coyotes_medium 3
5
The Coyotes jump to their spot in the standings, but getting 10 points in five games, after only getting 2 in the previous 5 has a lot to do with that.
1.229
Kings_medium
4
7
Los Angeles may sit in 9th place in the West, but they are only two points out of 3rd place with a game in hand. They are not a team one would like to face in the playoffs.
1.211
Blackhawks_medium 5
4
The Blackhawks sit in 11th, but they have a higher 5-on-5 ratio than six of the teams in front of them. They need to start getting more points, and we've been waiting for that to happen all year, but... it has to, right?
1.209
Predators_medium 6
6
Nashville sits in 4th place, and they have a game in hand on the four teams below them. They will have to fall pretty far to drop out, but ten points in ten games is less than good.
1.175
Stars_medium 7
3
The Stars finally fall. Only collecting five points in their last ten games has put them in a precipitous fall. And there are good arguments for why the Stars should trade Brad Richards.
1.119
Flames_medium 8
12
Calgary has gotten 16 points in their last ten, putting them in 8th place in the West. But they have played more games than anyone, so they will have to continue winning at a ridiculous clip to make the playoffs.
1.108
Sharks_medium 9
8
The Sharks are only one point out of the Pacific lead despite having a negative 5-on-5 goal ratio. But the charity point is creating something like a Japanese subway cramming in the West. So the Sharks are in 5th.
1.098
Wild_medium 10
9
Minnesota has climbed into 10th in the West, but is their surge for real?
1.039
Blue_jackets_medium 11
11
The Blue Jackets continue to question whether they have to make a trade at the deadline, but they probably shouldn't give up any youth since they just aren't good enough to make any impact in the playoffs.
1.007
Ducks_medium 12
14
Anaheim has solidified their spot in the playoffs thanks to other teams catching them in games played and falling out of the playoff picture fast. Getting 14 points in ten games helps too.
0.971
Blues_medium 13
13
The Blues are quickly plummeting down the standings, and their season will likely need a prolonged winning streak to extend past 82 games. It's unlikely, and they are already thinking about unloading players.
0.957
Avalanche_medium 14
10
Colorado has fallen so far (3 points in ten games) that their season is almost certainly over. And after the Peter Forsberg debacle, they now have to question whether to fire their coach or not.
0.903
Oilers_medium
15 15
The Oilers are not the Senators. That's good, right?
0.590

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