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NHL Power Rankings: Week Two

In this edition of NHL Power Rankings, sportswriters Lenny Rowe and Eric Russo compare the East and West to decide who the best teams in the league are. Where is your favorite team? Find out below:

1836693551.) Colorado Avalanche (5-0-0, 10 points)

The Av’s have been killing it opening up with a 5-0-0 record. They are solid on all fronts, including in net, where J-S Giguere and Semyon Varlamov have only allowed four goals in five games. Patrick Roy almost killed Bruce Boudreau, so there’s that too. – Lenny Rowe

2.)  San Jose Sharks (5-0-0, 10 points)

Time is running out for the Sharks’ Cup dreams. Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, and Dan Boyle are heading to the back nine of their careers, but they are off to quite the start (5-0-0). Oh, and they have rookie sensation Tomas Hertl – he has seven goals in five games, and might have scored the goal of the year. – Eric Russo

3.) St. Louis Blues (4-0-0, 8 points)

The Blues are on a tear, also opening up undefeated. They are second in the league with an average of 4.75 goals per game. This week will decide if the Blues are contenders or pretenders. — LR

4.) Pittsburgh Penguins (4-1-0, 8 points)

It’s the same old story for the Penguins (4-1-0). They’re a juggernaut offensively (third in the NHL in goals per game and power play percentage). But defensively they are average (15th in goals against), although Marc-Andre Fleury has been solid. Sidney Crosby has nine points in five games. –ER

5.) Boston Bruins (3-2-0, 6 points)

The Bruins couldn’t bury chances against the Red Wings, but look ahead to a two-game stretch in Florida. Besides a few defensive lapses, the Bruins could have pulled off the win at home. Look for less mistakes from the B’s this week. – LR

6.) Toronto Maple Leafs (5-1-0, 10 points)

The Leafs have just one loss (5-1-0) and they are showing they have some pretty good offensive firepower. They are fourth in GPG and sixth on the PP. Joffrey Lupul, Phil Kessel, and James van Riemsdyk are off to great starts. They also have the second-ranked penalty kill. — ER

7.) Chicago Blackhawks (3-1-1, 7 points)

Not an ideal start for the reigning champs. Their PK is the league-lowest at only 64.3%. The bright side is that Patrick Kane has four goals in five games. If Corey Crawford can rebound (which he will,) the Hawks will return to top form. – LR

8.) Montreal Canadiens (3-2-0, 6 points)

The Canadiens are doing it offensively and defensively. They are just 3-2-0, but they’re eighth in the league in GPG and fifth in GA (2.0). Defenseman P.K. Subban leads the team in points, with seven. — ER

9.) Anaheim Ducks (4-1-0, 8 points)

The Ducks are tied with the Hawks for the league-worst PK. Luckily, they are getting scoring from all fronts, and Jonas Hiller has re-emerged as the #1 goaltender … for now, If the Ducks can crack down defensively, they’ll move up in the coming weeks. — LR

10.) Detroit Red Wings (4-2-0, 8 points)

The Red Wings took down the Bruins on Monday and are 4-2-0, but they have struggled a bit offensively. They’re scoring just 2.7 goals a game and rank 21st on the PP. – ER

11.) Calgary Flames (3-0-2, 8 points)

I’m weary of the Flames, but they have not yet lost in regulation. They have scoring from all fronts, but who’s their goalie? Joey MacDonald (.897 SV%, 2.98 GAA) and Karri Ramo (.897 SV%, 3.69 GAA) haven’t exactly been brick walls. – LR

12.) Phoenix Coyotes (4-2-0, 8 points)

The Coyotes are off to a nice start. They’re 4-2-0, good for a second place tie in the Pacific Division. Though Mike Smith (3-2-0, 3.01 GAA) has struggled in goal. — ER

13.) Los Angeles Kings (4-2-0, 8 points)

I feel like this team might move up. Also, Ben Scrivens posted a 20-save shutout against Florida. I ripped Scrivens last year, but that IS impressive. It’s just a matter of Jonathan Quick shaking off his slow start. – LR

14.) Minnesota Wild (3-1-2, 8 points)

The Wild (3-1-2) are surrendering only two goals a game. Goalie Josh Harding has been impressive with a 3-1-0 record so far and a 1.06 GAA. No. 1 Niklas Backstrom is 0-0-2 with a 3.40 GAA. Matt Cooke leads this team in points with six… – ER

15.) Vancouver Canucks (3-3-0, 6 points)

I wouldn’t write this team off just yet. John Tortorella’s defense-first system might benefit Roberto Luongo in the long run. They’re also third in the league with a 90.5% PK. — LR

16.) New York Islanders (2-2-1, 5 points)

The Isles (2-2-1) are third in the Metropolitan division. They are in the top 10 in GPG (3.0), GA (2.4) and on the penalty kill (84.6). Michael Grabner has seven points in five games, while John Tavares has six. – ER

17.) Tampa Bay Lightning (3-2-0, 6 points)

A tough week ahead for the Lightning. They’ll face the Kings, Wild, Bruins, and Sabres. Valtteri Filppula (4), Teddy Purcell (3), and Steven Stamkos (4) lead the team in goals. Ben Bishop is 3-0-0, with a .928 save percentage, so that helps. – LR

18.) Ottawa Senators (1-2-2, 4 points)

Ottawa (1-2-2) is off to a disappointing start. After opening the season with a win, they have lost four straight games. They are 23rd in GPG (2.2), 22nd in GA (3.0), and 22nd on the power play (16.7%). Craig Anderson (3.17 GAA has struggled). Nothing is going right. – ER

19.) Columbus Blue Jackets (2-2-0, 4 points)

This team certainly has potential. They’ve lost some very close games early on, but I think they can move up. – LR

20.) Dallas Stars (2-2-0, 4 points)

The Stars (2-2-0) are just average. They are coming off of a 5-1 loss to Minnesota and are 22nd in GPG (2.3). With Tyler Seguin – who does have six points (two goals, four assists) in four games – and Jamie Benn, that has to be better. Former BU star Alex Chiasson has three goals and two assists through four games. – ER

21.) Carolina Hurricanes (2-2-2, 6 points)

Eric Staal is -5, Alexander Semin is -4, Jiri Tlusty is -3. The ‘Canes need to turn things around quickly. On the bright side, former Bruin, Anton Khudobin is 2-0-0 with a .929 save percentage. – LR

22.) Nashville Predators (2-3-0, 4 points)

Talk about offensive struggles, the Predators are potting just 1.8 goals a game and have a minus-6 goal differential. – ER

23.) New Jersey Devils (0-3-3, 3 points)

Finally, a team with a worse power play than Boston’s. They’ve only converted on 6.7% of their chances. I’m honestly surprised this team is not doing better. — LR

24.) Washington Capitals (2-4-0, 4 points)

This team should be better. They are 2-4-0, though Alex Ovechkin does have six goals and three assists in just six games. They should be on the move up the rankings soon. – ER

25.) Edmonton Oilers (1-4-1, 3 points)

Edmonton is in fourth place with 19 goals for. Problem is; they’ve had to pull 29 pucks out of their own net. Maybe they should hire a 7’2” 450lb. guy to play net. Just a thought. – LR

26.) Winnipeg Jets (3-3-0, 6 points)

The Jets (3-3-0) have a ton of young talent and should make some noise as the season continues. – ER

27.) Florida Panthers (2-4-0, 4 points)

The Panthers have been doing pretty well, all things considered. They smoked the Penguins 6-3 Friday night. The problem is, which one of their goaltenders will get the start against Boston on Thursday? – LR

28.) New York Rangers (1-4-0, 2 points)

What a disaster. New coach Alain Vigneault might not be long for the the Big Apple. The Blueshirts are 1-4-0, have lost three straight and have a minus-16 goal differential. They are scoring just 1.8 goals per game (27th) and are allowing a whopping five goals a game, dead last in the NHL. Henrik Lundqvist (1-3-0) somehow has a 4.21 GAA, which looks good compared to Martin Biron, who has a 7.65 GAA in two games. – ER

29.) Philadelphia Flyers (1-5-0, 2 points)

The Flyers are 7.4% on the powerplay, 78% on the PK, with the second lowest 1.33 goals per game. Claude Giroux has been very quiet in six games with only one point. Despite the losses, Steve Mason has been passable in net, with a .935 save percentage and 2.03 GAA in four games. Might be a good pick on your fantasy team. – LR

30.) Buffalo Sabres (0-6-1, 1 point)

Think things are bad in New York City? Take a trip upstate to Buffalo and the Rangers look like Cup contenders. The Sabres (0-6-1) are winless and have scored seven goals in their seven games. In hist first full season as head coach, Ron Rolston may be out of a job soon, too. – ER


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