NHL Power Rankings
by Joe Paciella - 11/16/2007
We're a little more than a month into this year's NHL season. Here's how each club stacks up for Doc's NHL power rankings.
1. Ottawa Senators - These boys are off to one of the best starts in NHL history, due to a stout defense and a top three offense.
2. Detroit Red Wings - Even thought it's early, Detroit is right in the mix for the Presidents trophy on the heels of a nine-game winning streak.
3. Carolina Hurricanes - The NHL's most potent offense has the 'Canes right near Ottawa for the lead in the East.
4. Colorado Avalanche - 18 points at home have the Avs close to the top of the West.
5. Montreal Canadians - A hot power play is keeping the Habs in contention.
6. San Jose Sharks - Goaltender Evgeni Nabokov is second in wins this year, keeping the Sharks close to the top. He's played every game though, and at some point he's going to need a rest.
7. New York Rangers - Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist has been standing on his head to keep the Blue Shirts from slipping into the middle of the pack.
8. Philadelphia Flyers - Philly has protected Broad St., posting a record of 6-0-1 in their first seven at home.
9. Chicago Blackhawks - This current six-game road trip will show what this club is made of.
10. Minnesota Wild - After starting fast with five straight wins, the Wild have struggled mightily since the middle of October.
11. New York Islanders - The Isles boast one of the league's best home records and as a result are in contention in the East.
12. Columbus Blue Jackets - A good defense and one of the best penalty kills in the league have the Blue Jackets in the mix for a playoff spot.
13. Nashville Predators - Goaltender Dan Ellis has surprised some with his stellar netminding (1.35 goals against average) to keep the Predators going.
14. Boston Bruins - The good news is they ended their four-game slide with a win over Buffalo. The bad news is they have games upcoming against Toronto, Montreal, the Islanders and Philadelphia.
15. Anaheim Ducks - The pre-season favorite to win the Stanley Cup is off to a rocky start, due in part to a tough time away from home.
16. Los Angeles Kings - The Kings came on strong in the second half of October. Their next few games are winnable, so we could begin to see a surge here.
17. Dallas Stars - The Stars need to get some wins at home before a tough East Coast road trip that stretches into December, which includes games against the Rangers, Islanders and Flyers.
18. Tampa Bay Lightning - Until their defense matches their offense, this club will remain on the outside track of a Stanley Cup run.
19. Toronto Maple Leafs - Their abysmal goals against total will have to get better if they are to have any chance.
20. Vancouver Canucks - At his current pace, goaltender Roberto Luongo will not come anywhere near his stellar goals against average or win total of last season.
21. New Jersey Devils - To be a winning team in the NHL, more goals need to be scored than allowed. Jersey is not doing that, as they have been outscored by an average of a half a goal per game.
22. Calgary Flames - Being one of the league's most penalized teams, the Flames need to stay out of the box, especially since they are near the bottom in penalty killing percentage.
23. Pittsburgh Penguins - Sidney Crosby, one of the league's top scorers, can't carry this team by himself.
24. St. Louis Blues - A big win against Detroit may have the Blues back on track.
25. Atlanta Thrashers - If you are going to be one of the worst defensive teams in the league, you can't also be in the middle of the pack in goals scored if you want to go to the postseason.
26. Edmonton Oilers - A 5-8-0 October and a rough start to November have the Oilers looking up at just about everyone in the league.
27. Florida Panthers - The only bright spot seems to be Olli Jokinen and his league-leading seven power play goals.
28. Buffalo Sabres - A terrible November doesn't get any easier, with another game against Ottawa and three against Montreal.
29. Phoenix Coyotes - When it rains, it pours. The Coyotes are giving up over four goals a game in their losses as compared to under two in their wins.
30. Washington Capitals - The Caps have only won twice through seven games at the Verizon Center. A bad home record spells certain disaster for any team in any sport.