Calm Your Jets! NHL Power Rankings Week 3
By Kevin Mejia
BIGGEST JUMP: Arizona Coyotes, 12
BIGGEST DROP: New York Rangers, 12
- Colorado Avalanche (7-1-1) (NO MOVEMENT) – A hard loss to the Pens in the second game of a 5 game roadie didn’t seem to faze the Avs as they defeated Florida and Tampa Bay on back to back nights. The Avs got outplayed in their first regulation loss to the Blues. Nathan MacKinnon has amped his point streak up to 9 games. The Avs will look to get back in the win column with a back to back of Vegas and Florida in store this Friday and Saturday.
- Boston Bruins (6-1-2) (NO MOVEMENT) – The Bruins are doing what the Bruins do best; racking up points in the standings. Capturing 4 of 6 points over the past week is phenomenal. Splitting a home and home with the Maple Leafs is a success. David Pastrňák has lit up the league for 10 goals on the campaign, including this dynamo goal versus the Leafs. Tuukka Rask is proving his Boston haters wrong with a .944 save percent.
- Buffalo Sabres (8-1-1) (UP 2) – Buffalooooooooooo!! After being handed their first regulation loss by Anaheim, the Sabres have rattled off 3 consecutive wins, 2 of which came against San Jose in a home and home. Sandwiched in between the Ducks game and Sharks set was a 3-nil match versus the Kings. Goalie Carter Hutton’s stat line thus far: 6-0-0, .943 save percent, 1.65 goals against average. Unreal. Captain Jack Eichel leads the way with 14 points while Rasmus Dahlin continues to rack up points.
- Edmonton Oilers (7-2-1) (UP 3) – A crafty week for the Oilers as they ventured to a 2-1-1 record since last Wednesday. Connor McDavid showed why he is the BEST PLAYER IN THE NHL with a dazzling goal versus the Flyers; part of a 5-point night for McDavid. James Neal quietly sits with 9 goals at the moment. The Oilers currently sit on a 2-game losing streak with losses to Winnipeg and Minnesota. A true test of this Oilers team comes tomorrow night against the Capitals.
- Washington Capitals (7-2-2) (UP 8) – Blah blah blah Capitals shmapitals… WHY ARE YOU WATCHING HOCKEY RIGHT NOW D.C.? The Nationals just won a game in the World freaking Series! Max Scherzer pitched 5 innings with 7 strikeouts while only allowing 2 earned runs. 20-year-old Juan Soto hit a massive home run off Astros’ ace Gerrit Cole. Soto finished the game 3 of 4 with 3 RBI. Stephen Strasburg takes the hill versus Justin Verlander tonight. Defenseman John Carlson leads the NHL with 20 points.
- Vegas Golden Knights (7-4-0) (UP 4) – Vegasssss baby! Flip a coin and there’s a chance that it’ll land on heads 3 out of 4 times. That’s what Vegas did this past week. A shutout by Marc-André Fleury against his former team led a stellar performance for the Golden Knights. A wacky 6-2 loss to the Flyers was immediately washed away by a victory in Chicago last night. Mark Stone continues to produce with 14 points. Vegas plays Colorado in a great matchup Friday.
- Carolina Hurricanes (6-3-0) (DOWN 4) – Welp. That west coast tour did not go as planned. The Canes finished the 3-game set versus the Kings, Sharks, and Ducks by dropping the last two by a combined 5 goals (1 empty net goal allowed). James Reimer had a .810 save percent versus the Sharks while Petr Mrázek got pulled after allowing 4 goals on 13 shots in his start versus the Ducks. The Canes still managed to outshoot their opponents by a combined 64-42. The goaltending will rebound.
- Vancouver Canucks (6-3-0) (UP 8) – Vancouver is showing that they are a legit threat in this league. Even though 2 of their 3 wins in the past week were against teams below .500, the Canucks have won convincingly. Most recently, the Canucks rallied from a 2-0 deficit to win 5-2. Captain Bo Horvat recorded a hat trick in the process. Elias Pettersson has 10 points in 9 games. Thatcher Demko and Jacob Markstrom both have save percentages over .930. Vancouver is for real.
- Pittsburgh Penguins (6-4-0) (UP 2) – An unconvincing week for the Penguins. Barely beating the Avs in overtime, defeating a bad Stars team, and then losing to the Golden Knights and Panthers. Brandon Tanev scored what might have been the luckiest goal of all time against the Avs. Matt Murray has been playing league average goaltending, which bodes well for this team. Sidney Crosby, Kris Letang, and Jake Guentzel will have to carry this team if they want to make the playoffs. The trio has a combined 33 points.
- Arizona Coyotes (5-2-1) (UP 12) – Phil Kessel is an Arizona Coyote!!! The Yotes put up a strong week going undefeated in 3 games against Nashville, Ottawa, and New York (Rangers). Outshooting their opponents in 2 of the 3 games (outshot by Ottawa, partially due to score effects), the Coyotes have shown that their defense is a brick wall. Nick Schmaltz quietly has 9 points in 8 games to lead this young team. Darcy Kuemper is playing Vezina caliber goaltending. Look out for this team.
- Nashville Predators (5-3-1) (DOWN 7) – Music City is getting loud. The offense continues to hum at a great pace. After losing 2 games in a row to Arizona and Florida, the Preds got back on track with a 6-1 stomping of the Ducks. The Preds offense is putting up a massive 4.22 goals per game. Filip Forsberg being out with a lower body injury hasn’t slowed this team down whatsoever. Matt Duchene is earning his money while Ryan Ellis leads the team with 12 points.
- Toronto Maple Leafs (5-4-2) (DOWN 6) – Big time yikes for the Maple Leafs. They have one of the hardest schedules in the league, as shown by this week, having two back to backs. The first back to back was a couple of hard losses to Columbus and Boston. On the flip side, the Leafs did defeat the Bruins at home in overtime on Saturday night. Jonathan Tavares suffered a broken finger a week ago versus the Capitals and will at least be out for another week.
- Anaheim Ducks (6-4-0) (DOWN 1) – A .500 week for the Ducks. A 2-game win streak was followed with a 2-game losing streak. The Ducks are night and day when they get any offense. If the Ducks made any acquisition for scoring (#BRINGBACKBOBBY) it would improve this roster tenfold. Score more than 3 goals and John Gibson will carry this team to victory. John Gibson sits at a .927 save percent. The Ducks will go as far as Gibson can take them.
- Florida Panthers (4-2-3) (UP 5) – Florida has played relatively well over their past 3 games, going 2-0-1. Wins versus Nashville (in shootout) and Pittsburgh (regulation) show that this team has what it takes to make the playoffs. Blowing 3-1 and 4-3 leads to Colorado stings but salvaging a point helps a bit. Sergei Bobrovsky put up a .920 save percent versus the Pens, which is what he must do for this team. Aleksander Barkov has 8 assists on the season but has yet to score a goal.
- St. Louis Blues (4-2-3) (DOWN 7) – The Blues have gone 1-1-1 on a 4 game homestand that started this past Thursday versus Vancouver. During those 3 games, the Blues have outshot their opponents every game. After the homestand concludes, the Blues will head to Boston in a Stanley Cup Final rematch Saturday night. Vladimir Tarasenko continues to dominate as he dropped a 3-point performance versus the Avalanche Monday night. St. Louis just needs to play more consistent hockey to prove themselves.
- Montreal Canadiens (4-3-2) (UP 4) – After 113 shots in 127 games Victor Mete finally has an NHL goal, while rookie Nick Suzuki took 7 games to score his first. A 1-goal loss to the Wild stalled a 2-game win streak, but the Canadiens should not be overly concerned. Backup Keith Kinkaid played below average (.879 save percent) in the loss to Minnesota, but certainly stood tall with this dynamite save. Montreal will right the ship tomorrow night versus the Sharks.
- Tampa Bay Lightning (4-3-1) (DOWN 8) – Another week of hockey, another week of confusion from the Lightning. The Bolts beat the mighty Bruins in a shootout and got slaughtered by the Avs, 6-2. Andrei Vasilevskiy seems to be the key to this team, as he recorded a .919 save percent versus the Bruins while posting a .750 versus the Avalanche. Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov combined for 1 point in those two games as well. The Lightning play the Pens tonight and the Preds Saturday.
- New York Islanders (5-3-0) (NO MOVEMENT) – Look out. The Islanders are hitting their stride as they find themselves with a 4-game win streak dating back to October 12th versus the Florida Panthers. The Isles have won these 4 games by a combined 5 goals (4 goals not including one empty netter), so this might be a glimmer of false hope. 3 of the 4 games went to overtime, with 1 of those 3 heading to a shootout. Prove me wrong. The Isles play the Coyotes tomorrow night.
- Calgary Flames (5-5-1) (DOWN 5) – Head coach Bill Peters is officially on the hot seat. Calgary needs to get a mental checkup. This team plays wildly inconsistent. After a 5-1 drubbing of the Red Wings, the Flames dropped a must win game versus the Kings. A show me game versus the Capitals proved to be a backbreaker for the Flames, as they lost 5-3. The big guns in Calgary have slowed down a bit. A coaching change might be in the works.
- Columbus Blue Jackets (4-3-2) (UP 4) – What a difference a week can make. Columbus played in 4 games over 6 days and came out with 6 of a possible 8 points. Joonas Korpisalo played in 3 of the 4 games, recording a save percent of .918, which is just enough to carry this weakened Blue Jackets squad. Sonny Milano may have scored the goal of the year in their 3-2 win versus Dallas. Coming from behind in 2 of their games, the Blue Jackets have stepped up.
- Winnipeg Jets (5-6-0) (NO MOVEMENT) – Shockingly, the Jets only sit 2nd to last in total goals allowed, with 36. Also a shock, the Jets have allowed just 6 goals over their past 3 games. Head coach Paul Maurice might be working magic with this lousy Jets blueline. Connor Hellebuyck might also be a reason for this slowed pace of goals against, as he now sits at a .929 save percent. The Jets must play consistently to win; a matchup with the Flames Saturday will be one to watch.
- Los Angeles Kings (4-5-0) (UP 4) – Alright Drew, we get that the Flames are just another team and not a rival… but after laying a massive hip check on Matthew Tkachuk folks might suggest otherwise. Check yourself Drew. It’s a rivalry. The Kings have won 2 straight games. Anže Kopitar scored a goal with 14:08 remaining in the third versus the Jets to push the Kings to a stingy 3-2 win. The Kings play the Blues tomorrow night in a physical Western Conference matchup.
- Philadelphia Flyers (3-3-1) (DOWN 8) – The Flyers tried their best versus the Oilers, however, they allowed Connor McDavid to score 5 points while the Flyers couldn’t finish on 52 shots. Coming home to Dallas and losing is rough but beating Vegas at home Monday night was a confidence booster for this team. Brian Elliot may need to take over as the starting keeper, as Carter Hart has looked lost in his 5 starts, posting a .890 save percent. Travis Konecny continues to roll with 10 points.
- San Jose Sharks (3-6-0) (UP 1) – A wacky week for the Sharks. Beating an elite Hurricanes team off the back of an Evander Kane hat trick says a lot about the potential of this team. A home and home with Buffalo did not go as well as planned, as they only got 1 of a possible 4 points with a loss in overtime. With 2 goaltenders with save percentages under .900, the goalie situation can only get better, right? Montreal and Toronto await on a back to back.
- New Jersey Devils (2-4-2) (UP 5) – 2 hug(h)e(s) wins over the last two games for the Devils. Jack Hughes scoring his first NHL goal against his brother Quinn and the Canucks is fitting. Mackenzie Blackwood has stopped 54 of 56 shots during this abrupt 2 game win streak for the Devils. The Devils only have 2 more games remaining this month, as they will be playing the Coyotes and Lightning, who will both be coming off the first halves of back to back games. A potential 4-game win streak is in the works.
- Dallas Stars (3-7-1) (UP 1) – After breaking out of a 5-game slump, the Stars find themselves the winners of 2 straight games. Bear in mind these wins come against the Flyers and Senators. Old man Corey Perry carried the Stars to a victory over the Flyers, recording points on 3 of the 4 Star’s goals. Ben Bishop’s game seems to be improving, as he now sits at a .913 save percent. Roope Hintz’s breakout year continues as he has 7 points in 11 games.
- Minnesota Wild (3-6-0) (UP 2) – The Wild are… heating up? The crew from Minnesota has won 2 in a row, beating Montreal and Edmonton. A 4-0 shutout loss versus Montreal forced a players only meeting, which could be marked as a turning point for the Wild this season. Alex Stalock helped shutout the Oilers as Devan Dubnyk went down with an injury. Eric Staal got off the schneid with his first 2 goals of the season against the Oilers. Will Minnesota right the ship? Who knows?
- Chicago Blackhawks (2-3-2) (NO MOVEMENT) – Things are looking down for the Blackhawks. A narrow win versus the Blue Jackets has been followed with 2 losses in a row to Washington and Vegas. Patrick Kane’s 8 points in 7 games pace will not be enough for the Blackhawks to sniff the playoffs. The Corey Crawford era might need to come to an end, as he has posted a .891 save percent in 4 contests. On the contrary, Robin Lehner has a .943 save percent in 3 games.
- New York Rangers (2-4-1) (DOWN 12) – Showtime at MSG has been… cancelled! After a 2-0-0 start to the season, the Rags have gone 0-4-1. A pair of 5-2 and 3-2 losses isn’t easy to handle for the boys on Broadway. Mika Zibanejad has cooled off with 3 points over his last 5 games after a hot start. Alex Georgiev is the future in net, as he has posted a .923 save percent in 3 games this season. The Rags play in-state rival Buffalo tomorrow.
- Detroit Red Wings (3-6-0) (DOWN 7) – Tough week for the Red Wings. The offense was insufferable only scoring 4 goals in 3 games. Goalie Jimmy Howard is 1-3 on the season with a .898 save percent. The top 3 scorers of Anthony Mantha, Tyler Bertuzzi, and Dylan Larkin all have at least 7 points. The next highest scorer has 4 points for the Red Wings. The Wings are nothing much to write home about.
- Ottawa Senators (1-6-1) (NO MOVEMENT) – Stay bad, Ottawa. The Sens were lucky to record 1 point in their last 3 games. The Golden Knights outshot the Sens 54-39, while the Stars outshot them 43-20. Not shocking, the Sens outshot the Coyotes. Going down 2-0 within the first 10 minutes of a game is never a good start. Don’t be shocked if this team loses 6 more in a row. This team is currently riding a 4-game losing streak.
Penguins Photo Credit: Joe Sargent
Sabres Photo Credit: (Photo by Rob Marczynski/NHLI via Getty Images)
Canucks Photo Credit: (Photo by Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images)
Panthers Photo Credit: (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
Devils Photo Credit: (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) and (Photo by Andy Marlin/NHLI via Getty Images)
Blue Jackets Photo Credit: (Photo by Jamie Sabau/NHLI via Getty Images)