NHL power rankings

Who is number one in power rankings?

Captain Steven Stamkos is leading the Lightning to the playoffs.

Captain Steven Stamkos is leading the Lightning to the playoffs.

Jacob Prail, Staff Writer

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It’s crunch time in the NHL, and teams making some last minute trades and are getting healthy. We are starting to see who is ready for the stretch that is the grueling 8 week Stanley Cup Playoffs. Let’s give the top ten in the league right now.

 

  1. Philadelphia Flyers: Ever since the Philadelphia Eagles won the Super Bowl, the Flyers have been on fire, riding off the surge of the win of the Eagles. The Flyers are getting healthy. Claude Giroux is currently third in scoring with 74 points and he has been the engine of this Flyers team. Sean Couturier has been excellently defensively and Shayne Gostisbehere has been an pain in scorers’ sides with constant poke checks but not only is he good defensively, he can also score for the Flyers. Brian Elliott is currently injured but Petr Mrazek from Detroit has been strong in his two showings for the Flyers. Let them stay hot and they can cause problems for Pittsburgh and Washington in the first round.

 

  1. Pittsburgh Penguins: Yes, they are never going to go away. They hang around and wait and get hot at the best possible time. Crosby has been Crosby, leading the team in assists with 48 and Malkin is the leading point and goal scorer for the Penguins with 76 points and 36 goals. The Penguins also have the best power play in the league right now and are 4th in goals per game at 3.2 goals a game. Matt Murray will be a wall in the stretch leading to the playoffs and has been playing solid all year. They are the team to keep an eye on because they have been there before and won before.

 

  1. Minnesota Wild: Minnesota has been on a hot streak recently, going 7-1-2 in their last ten games. They passed the slumping St. Louis Blues and the steady Dallas Stars into third place in the division. Eric Staal has been playing well as he is the leading goal scorer. But Devan Dubnyk has been playing lights out, coming up with clutch saves and keeping Minnesota in games. This team can be an underdog in the playoffs and they deserve your attention.

 

  1. Washington Capitals: They have been one of the best regular season teams in the league the last several years. But for Alex Ovechkin and company, they need a playoff win against Pittsburgh to get the Eastern Conference finals. But they run into the buzzsaw every year. No doubt this team can win it all one year, but this year isn’t their year. Brandon Holtby has been mediocre at best and his recent performance against the Lightning won’t win them the cup and with stars like T.J Oshie and Ovechkin, they might have a chance but I’m giving them a slim one.

 

  1. Toronto Maple Leafs: The Leafs have been at the top of the league since the beginning of the season. They have some ups and downs like most teams do, but the team has been very consistent. The duo of Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews has been working well for the Leafs. Marner leads the team in points and assists and Matthews leads the team in goals. But the play in net by Frederik Andersen has been very strong this season as well. This team is the Eastern conference sneaky play in the playoffs.

 

  1. Winnipeg Jets: This is a complete surprise; after missing the playoffs last year, they are coming back with a vengenge. They just acquired Paul Stastny from the St. Louis Blues, which the Jets won in this deal. Stastny will give the Jets a physical presence on the boards and add that to Blake Wheeler, who is having an outstanding season. This team can become deadly. The goaltending play from Hellebuyck has been sensational as well. This is a underrated team and if paired with Minnesota or Dallas in the first round, watch out because they can make some noise.
  2. Boston Bruins: They have taken a step back a bit since their hot run after the All Star break, but the Bruins are looking very good in all their games and the play of Marchand and Bergeron has been outstanding, especially Marchand. But even better is the rising play of Tukka Rask in net. He has been a goal stopper for them and in their run, he kept them in games and shut out some teams. Boston currently can beat Tampa in the playoffs so this is a team to watch out for.
  3. Las Vegas Golden Knights: AN EXPANSION TEAM. An expansion team is playing playing incredible, with play from James Neal, David Perron and Marc Andre-Fleury. Not only that, they also have the best home ice advantage in the league, losing only five games all year
  4. Tampa Bay Lightning: The Lightning just acquired Ryan McDonagh and T.J Miller from the Rangers. This is a huge difference maker for the Lightning. Now teams are going to have to deal with either Victor Hedman or McDonagh on the ice either paired with Mikhail Sergachev and Anton Stralman. Plus with the constant pressure that Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kuhcerov and Brayden Point can bring along with Yanni Gourde and Alex Killorn, they look like they can score a lot in a hurry. Not to mention they currently have the best rising goaltender in the league in Andrei Vasilevskiy.
  5. Nashville Predators: Now if Tampa Bay got better, who can beat them? Well, I have answers for you. It’s last year’s runner up, the Nashville Predators. They play with constant pressure on your scorers. Poking every puck out and with Mike Fisher returning, he was the heart and soul of the team last year and now he is back for the Predators to make another run into the playoffs. Subban is leading the team in points and is Arvidsson leading in goals. Also the Predators snagged another forward from Chicago, Ryan Hartman. On top of that, the Predators have the best goaltender in the league in Pekka Rinne. He is by far the best goaltender in the league and he is ready to redeem his Stanley Cup loss. As they lead the league in points, they are most dangerous team in the league at this moment.
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