It been a largely high scoring week this week for the Canadian teams in the NHL. This week’s rankings have some upward movement by unexpected teams. Montreal and Vancouver move up while Calgary slips. Here are the power rankings for this week.
1) Winnipeg Jets: 17-7-4 2nd in Central Division. (2-2 in the past week) EVEN
The Jets stay even at the top of this week’s power rankings. Their high powered offence was in full force scoring 15 goals in four games. They did however get 12 goals scored on them. This team has an extremely high ceiling but will only go as far as consistent goaltending takes them. As long as Connor Hellebuyck maintains his great save% and can keep the Jets in games they will continue to win.
2) Toronto Maple Leafs: 17-10-1 2nd in Atlantic Division. (1-1 in the last week) EVEN
The Leafs recently finished their Canadian West Coast swing with a 2-1 record, their only loss coming at the hands of the Canucks. The Leafs have struggled with consistency lately but with solid goaltening and maybe the best young offensive core in the league they shouldn’t have to worry about that continuing. With games against the Flames, Penguins, Oilers and Flyers this week they will be plenty busy and will have to work hard to hang on to the two spot in my rankings.
3) Vancouver Canucks: 14-10-4 3rd in Pacific Division. (3-0 in the last week) + 1
The Canucks move up one spot this week and are neck and neck with the leafs to jump again. This is one of the most surprising teams in the entire NHL. Starting goalie Jacob Markstrom picked up his first career shut out on Tuesday against Carolina and is giving the team a chance to win night in and night out. If they keep playing like this they will continue to climb in the rankings.
4) Montreal Canadiens: 13-13-3 3rd in Atlantic Division. (3-1 in the past week) + 1
The Habs went 5-0 since Carey Price’s return until St. Louis ended that with a 4-3 victory on Tuesday. The Canadiens seems to have found their scoring touch as well. They fired in 21 goals in the past four games. 16 of those coming in two games against the Wings. The Habs still need a top four defenceman or two but the team seems to have finally bought in to what Claude Julien’s systems.
5) Calgary Flames: 14-12-1 One point back of final Wild Card spot. (1-2 in the past week) – 2
The Flames had a bit of a rough week. They gave up 12 goals in their three games which isn’t a good stat. This team has the potential to be one of the best teams in the Pacific Division but struggle with consistency. They look like a Stanley Cup contender one week and then fall three places back in a wild card race the next. Will the real Calgary Flames please stand up?
6) Edmonton Oilers: 11-14-2 Second Last in West. (1-1 in the past week) EVEN
The Oilers finished the week with one win and one loss. They managed to score a staggering 11 goals in two games but also gave up the same amount. I don’t see the Oilers gaining any ground with Cam Talbot out for the foreseeable future. They need to go somewhere else to find a goalie in the mean time if they want to gain some ground. The Oilers are running out of time if they are going to turn back into the team of last year.
7) Ottawa Senators: 9-10-6 Tied for 2nd last in the East (1-2 in the past week) EVEN
The Sens are struggling. They won just their second game in the last ten this week. They beat the Islanders 6-5 but then has a set back with a 5-0 loss to Winnipeg. I don’t know what the Sens need to do to turn it around. Craig Anderson isn’t giving the team the backstopping he did last year and the offence just isn’t where it needs to be. The Sens have been a historically streaky team so we will see if they turn it around and make a push but for now they stay in the seven spot in my rankings.
There is quite a few Canadian match ups this week so we should see a decent amount of movement going into next week. I expect the Canucks to keep climbing and the Oilers to fall. Keep an eye out next Wednesday for my third edition of the rankings. Thanks for reading.