It’s Friday and that means it’s time for our weekly Power Rankings. Using multiple variables we score teams out of 100 and rank them accordingly so you know who the contenders are, who the pretenders are and which way teams are trending. Forget polling a bunch of people, our scientific approach will have you impressing your friends when you tell them who’s moving up and who’s destined to fall.
#1 Tampa Bay Lightning
Calgary’s been gunning for their spot for weeks, but the Lightning quickly doused the Flames with a convincing 6-3 win. With four straight wins this week, Tampa easily stays on top of our Rankings for a 10th straight week. Can anyone catch them?
#2 Toronto Maple Leafs
With six wins in their last seven games, Toronto is now tied with three other teams for best of the rest behind Tampa Bay. They win the Super Computer’s favor with a +44 goal differential, second best in the NHL. With William Nylander seemingly heating up, scoring five points in the win streak, they could get even more dangerous, a scary thought for the rest of the East.
#3 San Jose Sharks
We highlighted the Sharks as a threat to take the top spot in the West last week. Fast forward to today and they’re in a three-way tie for first place in the conference, although Calgary still has a game in hand. That’s a good spot to be in for Peter DeBoer’s squad.
#4 Calgary Flames
The Flames had a shot at the Lightning, but four straight losses, including the head-to-head matchup, drop them out of second for the first time in seven weeks. They’re now a mediocre 4-3-3 in their last 10 games and have lost the Super Computer’s trust in the process.
#5 Nashville Predators
Three losses in four games this week, but the Preds barely hang on to a top 5 spots in our Rankings. The schedule doesn’t get easier in the immediate future, with road games against Vegas and Dallas up next, but they’re also just two points off the four-way tie for second in the standings. They’ll have to get back to winning quickly because teams behind them are heating up.
#6 Boston Bruins
We said Boston had an easy schedule last week and they’ve played like it, winning all three games and knocking on the door of the top 5. They start a five-game road trip tomorrow, starting off with two easy games against the Ducks and Kings, but the cupcakes will stop coming soon enough, as they visit the Sharks and Golden Knights next. Win out and they’re a lock to move into the top 5, but with Pastrnak sidelined with a thumb injury, it’s easier said than done.
#7 New York Islanders
The Islanders fell out of the Super Computer’s top 10 last week, but they forced their way back and established themselves as the best team in the Metro, finally edging Pittsburgh in the machine’s eyes. They’ve dominated defensively and have allowed one or fewer goals in four of eight February games.
#8 Winnipeg Jets
Starting off your week with a loss against the Senators is never good. Going 2-2-0 against four non-playoff teams is a bad look for a team that’s supposed to be among the league’s elite. As a result, the Super Computer drops them once again even though they’re tied for 2nd in the NHL. They won’t have to wait too long to get revenge on Ottawa though, as both teams play Sunday.
#9 Vegas Golden Knights
Another team coming off a rough week, the Super Computer still believes Vegas is better than their record indicates. Still, with just three wins in their last ten games, they’ll have to be more consistent to justify their spot in the top ten.
#10 St. Louis Blues
Without a doubt the hottest team in the NHL right now, the Blues continue their meteoric rise up the standings with their eighth straight win and are not only in the playoffs, but they’ve snatched a top-three spot in the Central division. Their revival in 2019 is spectacular and a lot of their success can be traced back to Vladimir Tarasenko’s renewed scoring touch and new starting goalie Jordan Binnington. With six of the next seven coming against teams currently in playoff position, they could establish themselves as bona fide contenders.
#11 Montreal Canadiens
In our last Power Rankings, we said Montreal could prove they belonged in the top 10 with strong showings against the Leafs and Predators. Two losses later, the Habs are not in the top 10 anymore. We warned them, but they didn’t listen.
#12 Pittsburgh Penguins
The first of four straight Metro teams in our Rankings, Pittsburgh gets the nod with two wins and a close contest against the Lightning. Still, they had to relinquish their crown as the best team in the division to the Islanders, who are really starting to pull away from the rest.
#13 Washington Capitals
The Caps posted one of the best wins of the week, crushing the Sharks 5-1 on Thursday, but with the Blues moving up, Washington is forced down a spot. They continue their road trip this week, with their next four coming on the road.
#14 Columbus Blue Jackets
The Blue Jackets were riding a four-game win streak heading into their matchup with the Islanders, but couldn’t pull off the statement win and instead were shut out 3-0. The future is hard to predict for this team since there hasn’t been any update to the Panarin or Bobrosky situation but the Super Computer feels confident enough about them to move them up one spot.
#15 Carolina Hurricanes
The last of the four straight Metro teams, the Hurricanes are on a roll lately and they finally get some love form the Super Computer, climbing back into the top half of the league. They’ve won seven of the last ten and are just three points off the last wild card spot. During those 10 games, new acquisition Nino Niederreiter has been buzzing, with 6 goals and 4 assists for his new squad. It’s fair to say Carolina has won the trade so far.
#16 Minnesota Wild
Things aren’t going so well in the State of Hockey. On top of losing their captain to injury last week, they recorded their first win of the month on Saturday before dropping the next two, giving them just four possible points in their last seven games. With the playoff field in the west so bunched up together, the Wild are at risk of quickly falling out of their wild card spot if they can’t get it going soon.
#17 Colorado Avalanche
The Avs just keep dropping and dropping. They lost the first three games of the week, twice in overtime to push their record in extra time to 1-10, to extend their losing streak to eight games, but they ended the week on a brighter note, beating the Jets 4-1 in Winnipeg. Could this win be the start of a turnaround?
#18 Dallas Stars
We were confident about Dallas last week after a pair of strong outings against Nashville but they were thoroughly underwhelming this week. Yes, they did shut out the Panthers, but a loss to Arizona and a beatdown at the hands of the Lightning don’t sit well with the Super Computer, who drops them back a spot.
#19 Buffalo Sabres
Three games, three 3-1 results for Buffalo, with two of them going their way. They remain within striking distance of the playoffs, but teams ahead of them are also heating up. They’ll have to keep this week’s momentum going if they want to make up ground in the wild card hunt.
#20 Florida Panthers
The playoffs are in all likelihood out of reach for Florida, but they’re not playing dead, with two close wins against the Capitals and the Flames in extra time this week. They’ve been heavily linked to Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky in the last few days/weeks, but it would be a questionable move to give up quality assets for two guys they could sign as free agents, especially since they’re not likely to mount any kind of playoff push.
#21 Philadelphia Flyers
One loss this week to the Pittsburgh Penguins gave the Super Computer some serious PTSD and it immediately shut down any thoughts of the Flyers moving up. The good news for the Flyers is they have a back-to-back coming up against the Red Wings but they follow that up with two games against top-ten teams, including the Lightning. The Super Computer might not be showing any love but at least Gritty loves WE.
#22 Vancouver Canucks
A .500 week including a shutout loss to the Ducks is not what the Canucks were looking for. They’re still tied for the last wildcard spot in the West but with two extra games played than the teams occupying those spots. The Canucks only have two games this week and will need two wins, especially in the game against Arizona who could creep up behind them if they aren’t careful. Luckily the Canucks have this guy pulling them along.
#23 Arizona Coyotes
Speak of the devil! Or should I say Coyote. We talked last week about how the ‘Yotes have been great at bouncing back this year and they did just that with two wins. Sadly, they were then shut out by the hottest team in the league in the Blues. With a big four-game week coming up, the Coyotes could place themselves right in the hunt for that last wildcard spot or they could fall right out of it.
#24 New York Rangers
The Rangers only went 1-2 this week and that dropped them to 24th in the standings, right where the Super Computer has decided they’ll stay. Their win came against the Leafs but they couldn’t have done it without a dominant performance from Alexandar Georgiev, our Weekend Warrior.
#25 Chicago Blackhawks
Wins against the teams below them and a loss against a team above them separate the Blackhawks from the bottom tier and that Super Computer respected that with a two-spot jump in our rankings. It’s still not sold on Chicago’s spot in the standings yet but it’s definitely keeping an eye out especially with Patrick Kane finding his MVP form. Games against the Red Wings and the Senators this week could see them separate themselves even more.
#26 Edmonton Oilers
Two games, three goals, and 0 wins. Not an ideal week for the Oilers. There’s lots of talk about Cam Talbot being moved to the Flyers but that won’t change their lack of depth. With four games against teams ahead of them in the standings this week, the Oilers could see them continue to fall.
#27 New Jersey Devils
Game by game, the Super Computer is losing hope on the Devils. Another awful week and the Devils are starting to look like they might give the Senators a run for last place. Without a miracle run, the Devils are essentially eliminated from the playoffs so falling further down the standings could be the ideal situation for them.
#28 Detroit Red Wings
You should count yourself lucky you don’t have to listen to the Super Computer when it gets a team right but credit where credit’s due. It was spot on with the Red Wings who moved up to 28th this week right where the Super Computer predicted. Once again, it’s leaving the Wings at 28th which seems pretty plausible seeing as the closest team behind them is the Kings who aren’t the most deadly team in the league.
#29 Los Angeles Kings
Oh no! Two straight teams for the Super Computer. Now we’re really going to hear it. Three games against top-ten teams this week doesn’t give the Kings much hope to move much this week which is why the Super Computer leaves them at 29th for another week.
#30 Anaheim Ducks
Well, it finally happened, the Ducks fired Randy Carlyle and the GM Bob Murray will take over behind the bench. In his first game as coach, the Ducks pulled out a shutout win against the Canucks. They win the feel-good story of the week as their goalie Kevin Boyle won his very first NHL start with a shutout. With a six-point cushion over the Sens for last place, the Ducks shouldn’t make it all the way to last but it could be in their near future.
#31 Ottawa Senators
The Senators gave the Jets reason to have a long hard look at themselves when they beat them 5-2 this week. Still no word on what the plans are with Matt Duchene and Mark Stone. At this point all the Sens can do is to try and play spoiler to teams who still have playoff aspirations.