NHL Power Rankings: 4/7/14

RANK

TEAM (Record)

LW

MOVEMENT

THE SKINNY

1

Boston (53-18-7)

1-1-1

The Bruins have met expectations this year because guys like Reilly Smith – and Jarome Iginla – have exceeded them. There isn’t a deeper team in hockey.
2

St. Louis (52-19-7)

2-2-0

Scuffling at the wrong time, the Blues need to rediscover their mojo before the playoffs begin. A busy week bringing games against four desperate teams is a good place to start.
3

Colorado (51-18-3)

3-0-1

∧ 3

Against four playoff-bound squads last week, the Avs picked up seven of eight possible points. Patrick Roy continues to build his case for Coach of the Year.
4

Chicago (51-22-5)

3-0-0

∧ 5

Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews are on the mend, and meanwhile, the Blackhawks are doing just fine without them. The defending champs look ready to hit the postseason running.
5

Anaheim (50-20-9)

2-2-0

∨ 2

The Ducks blew a chance to pad their Pacific Division lead last week, dropping games to Nashville and Edmonton over the weekend. Still, that comeback against Winnipeg was something to behold.
6

San Jose (49-21-9)

2-1-0

∨ 1

 A bit of a hiccup Saturday against Nashville – there are those Preds again – but the imminent return of Raffi Torres is a promising sign for the Sharks. Could he be in the lineup Wednesday against the Ducks!?
7

Pittsburgh (50-24-5)

2-2-0

∨ 3

What a win for the Pens Sunday night in Denver, who knocked off the red-hot Avs sans Crosby, Malkin, Kunitz, Orpik and Maatta. Still, so many injuries to so many key guys is a major concern entering the playoffs.
8

Montreal (45-27-7)

2-1-0

Barring a last-week miracle in Toronto, the Habs will be the lone Canadian squad in the postseason. Does that make them the nation’s team? Not so fast.
9

Los Angeles (45-28-6)

1-3-0

∨ 2

The Drew Doughty injury appears to be rather minor, which has to be a rather major relief for Kings fans. Outside of Jonathan Quick, there couldn’t be a bigger loss for L.A.
10

Tampa Bay (42-27-9)

1-2-0

Steve Yzerman, ever the face of composure, handled difficult circumstances in Tampa Bay this season with aplomb. The Lightning rewarded him on Monday.
11

Minnesota (40-26-12)

2-0-1

∧ 2

A statement week for the Wild, who sandwiched wins over L.A. and Pittsburgh around a hard-fought shootout loss to Chicago. Coach Mike Yeo isn’t pulling any punches as the playoffs near.
12

Detroit (37-27-14)

2-1-0

∧ 2

Without Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg, the Wings played their best hockey of the season over the past three weeks. Thank you Gustav Nyquist. Now, with Datsyuk back and Zetterberg on deck, is there anyone that wants a piece of Detroit?
13

N.Y. Rangers (43-31-5)

1-1-1

∨ 2

Remember what we said about Drew Doughty and the Kings? The same can be said of Ryan McDonagh and the Rangers. The Blueshirts dodged in a bullet in Vancouver.
14

Philadelphia (40-29-9)

1-2-1

∨ 2

Vincent Lecavalier is finally earning his keep, at about the same time the rest of the Flyers team decided to go on vacation. A bounce-back week is important for Philly as it gears up for the playoffs.
15

Columbus (40-31-7)

2-1-1

∧ 2

Two more shutouts last week for Sergei Bobrovsky, who continues to prove that last season was hardly a fluke. What a deal that was for Columbus.
16

Dallas (38-29-11)

2-2-0

If the Stars are edged out by the Coyotes for the second wild card spot in the West, they’ll rue Sunday’s loss to the Panthers for much of the summer. 4-1 on that five-game road trip would have felt much better than 3-2.
17

New Jersey (34-28-16)

3-0-1

∧ 4

Was there ever a more “Lamorielloian” team than this year’s Devils? They take the second fewest shots per game in the NHL, give up the fewest, and generally try putting you to sleep by the second period. And it’s “Lamorielloian” because it’s working.
18

Phoenix (36-28-14)

0-1-2

∨ 3

It’s easy to pull for the Coyotes to make the playoffs, but after dropping games to the Jets and Oilers last week, you have to wonder: do they really belong there?
19

Nashville (35-32-9)

2-0-0

Fans in Nashville have to be wondering where these Predators have been all season. Wins last week against Anaheim and San Jose made it three straight –  and six out of eight – for the suddenly high-scoring Preds.
20

Washington (35-30-13)

1-2-0

∨ 2

The Caps are 0-25-6 when they score two or fewer goals this season. You can’t survive in the NHL trying to outgun the opposition every night.
21

Vancouver (35-32-11)

1-1-0

∨ 1

Controversy just seems to follow John Tortorella. Can he and GM Mike Gillis coexist in Vancouver?
22

Ottawa (33-31-14)

2-2-0

Craig Anderson’s season is a microcosm of Ottawa’s: high expectations met by disappointing play.  
23

Calgary (31-38-7)

2-1-0

How ‘bout the Flames, 10-7 in their past 17? Calgary is putting a nice bookend on a mostly barren season.
24

Toronto (38-33-8)

2-1-0

∧ 6

A flicker of hope last week after wins over Calgary and Boston, but the lights went out Sunday against Winnipeg. BOOO!! they say in Toronto.
25

Carolina (34-33-11)

2-1-1

∨ 1

With Kirk Muller reportedly out as coach at the end of the season, might a franchise legend be behind the bench next year?
26

Winnipeg (33-31-13)

2-1-1

Is recent signee Connor Hellebuyck the long-term answer in goal for the Jets? His numbers this year for UMASS-Lowell suggest he certainly has a shot.
27

N.Y. Islanders (29-38-9)

2-1-1

∨ 2

Local firefighters slugging it out with local policemen in a charity hockey game. Could this happen anywhere else but Nassau Coliseum?
28

Edmonton (27-40-9)

2-2-0

The Oilers have followed a similar rebuild plan as teams like Pittsburgh and Chicago. So where has it gone wrong for Edmonton?
29

Florida (28-42-8)

1-3-0

∨ 2

He’s certainly not the player he once was, but Ed Jovanovski doesn’t love the game any less. You root for a guy like him.
30

Buffalo (21-48-9)

1-3-0

∨ 1

Back to the cellar for the Sabres, whose season has looked a lot like Christian Ehrhoff’s ear.

 

 

 

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