NHL power rankings: Heat rises as the Flames move into the top 10

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Perhaps I’ve underestimated how much movement can still happen in these power rankings during the middle of the season. The top end seems to be more or less solidified, but all the intertwining hot and cold streaks are still allowing a fair amount of teams to swap places, including several teams rising – or dropping – three or more spots this week.

I’ll be ranking teams not just on their results in the standings but also on how they’ve looked in several stats as well. Otherwise, I’d just copy and paste the standings, right? No fun in that. The rankings are an aggregate of six different stats: points %, 5-on-5 goal differential, 5-on-5 xGF/60, 5-on-5 xGA/60, power play xGF/60, and shorthanded xGA/60, all coming courtesy of Natural Stat Trick. But, to ground the rankings a bit, no team can be above a team that’s more than five points ahead in the standings, regardless of the aggregate.

1. Boston Bruins

Record: 33-5-4 (.833%, 1st)
5v5 Goal Differential: +40 (2nd)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.81 (t-7th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.28 (3rd)
PP xGF/60: 9.12 (8th)
PK xGA/60: 6.19 (1st)
5v5 PDO: 102.8
Previous Week: 1st (0)

Even in a week where the Bruins only played two games, and lost in regulation in one of them, none of the other teams came close to catching up to them in the standings and the power rankings. It certainly helps that the only chance any team had of making significant ground was the Leafs on Saturday, but with the Bruins winning on a late goal, they managed to go 11 points up on their division rival.

2. Carolina Hurricanes

Record: 27-9-8 (.705%, 2nd)
5v5 Goal Differential: +23 (5th)
5v5 xGF/60: 3.21 (1st)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.04 (1st)
PP xGF/60: 8.92 (11th)
PK xGA/60: 6.96 (3rd)
5v5 PDO: 99.6
Previous Week: 2nd (0)

The Hurricanes continue to sputter a little bit, as they saw their losing streak fall to four games at the start of last week with a loss to the Devils and ended last week with a shootout loss to the Canucks. In between those losses though were a couple of wins over the Blue Jackets and Penguins, so they managed to hang on to the second spot as a result.

3. New Jersey Devils

Record: 28-12-3 (.686%, 3rd)
5v5 Goal Differential: +37 (3rd)
5v5 xGF/60: 3.15 (2nd)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.33 (5th)
PP xGF/60: 9.33 (4th)
PK xGA/60: 7.47 (8th)
5v5 PDO: 101.3
Previous Week: 4th (+1)

The Devils are back to being hot, as they come into this week on a four-game winning streak, including victories over the Hurricanes, Ducks, and Kings last week. That moves them back up onto the podium, although a poor week from the Leafs certainly helped them there.

4. Toronto Maple Leafs

Record: 26-11-7 (.670%, t-5th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +24 (4th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.8 (t-9th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.31 (4th)
PP xGF/60: 8.86 (12th)
PK xGA/60: 6.55 (2nd)
5v5 PDO: 101.5
Previous Week: 3rd (-1)

The Leafs didn’t have the best week by their standards, as after starting it off with a win over the Predators, they dropped two straight on the road, including their first regulation loss to the Red Wings in more than five years and an important loss to the Bruins. They were without Auston Matthews for two games, so with him being back in time for the loss to Boston, I’d imagine the Leafs go back to normal this week.

5. Dallas Stars

Record: 25-12-7 (.648%, 9th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +14 (t-7th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.75 (13th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.55 (t-14th)
PP xGF/60: 10.65 (1st)
PK xGA/60: 7.5 (t-9th)
5v5 PDO: 101.4
Previous Week: 6th (+1)

The Stars also didn’t have a week to write home about, as they dropped two of three as well, but with the loss to the Rangers coming in overtime, it rounds them out to an average 1-1-1 record on the week. They have been without Roope Hintz in the lineup, so that’s been a big hit to their results and will likely mean they get better once he returns.

6. Vegas Golden Knights

Record: 28-14-2 (.659%, 8th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +1 (19th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.73 (14th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.38 (8th)
PP xGF/60: 9.05 (9th)
PK xGA/60: 7.19 (5th)
5v5 PDO: 99.9
Previous Week: 5th (-1)

The Golden Knights only got into two games last week, beating the Panthers before dropping a Saturday night game against the Oilers. Playing at about the same level as the Stars drops them down a spot as a result, and the fact that the Golden Knight’s 5-on-5 play hasn’t been good lately has hurt them as well.

7. Winnipeg Jets

Record: 29-14-1 (.670%, t-5th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +14 (t-7th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.59 (t-18th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.59 (18th)
PP xGF/60: 8.96 (10th)
PK xGA/60: 7.46 (7th)
5v5 PDO: 101.7
Previous Week: 8th (+1)

The Jets didn’t have the prettiest start to the week with their 7-5 loss to the Red Wings, but they rebounded quickly with three strong wins over the Sabres, Penguins, and Coyotes to finish it off. They managed to move up a spot thanks to those wins, not so much for improving the Jets’ standing in the aggregate but because it gave them enough of a gap over the Flames to let the five-point rule kick in.

8. Calgary Flames

Record: 21-14-9 (.580%, 13th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +9 (t-11th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.84 (5th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.34 (6th)
PP xGF/60: 7.98 (18th)
PK xGA/60: 7.09 (4th)
5v5 PDO: 98.7
Previous Week: 13th (+5)

The Flames are the highest risers in this week’s rankings after capturing five of a possible six points last week, along with their excellent on-ice play lately adding to this team’s outlook. They could have been even higher too, as the aggregate had them above the Golden Knights and the Jets, but the five-point rule keeps them contained for now.

9. Tampa Bay Lightning 

Record: 27-13-1 (.671%, 4th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +13 (10th)
5v5 xGF/60: 3.02 (4th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.51 (13th)
PP xGF/60: 7.96 (19th)
PK xGA/60: 8.02 (16th)
5v5 PDO: 100.8
Previous Week: 10th (+1)

At the very least, the Lightning seem to be making one of the races in the Atlantic Division exciting, as they made up a lot of ground on the Leafs with a three-game winning streak. That moves them up another spot in the rankings, although their play still isn’t quite to the level that we expect from them.

10. New York Rangers

Record:  24-13-7 (.625%, 10th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +9 (t-11th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.55 (22nd)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.48 (11th)
PP xGF/60: 10.38 (2nd)
PK xGA/60: 7.59 (11th)
5v5 PDO: 100.3
Previous Week: 7th (-3)

The Rangers dropped a few spots in this week’s rankings, but don’t let that fool you into thinking they’re struggling, as it’s mostly due to the teams above them just being a little bit hotter. While a loss to the Habs to end the week isn’t great, they still got two wins over the Wild and Stars to keep up with the other teams in this section of the rankings.

11. Minnesota Wild

Record: 24-14-4 (.619%, 11th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +5 (14th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.4 (24th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.23 (2nd)
PP xGF/60: 9.15 (7th)
PK xGA/60: 7.5 (t-9th)
5v5 PDO: 100.4
Previous Week: 9th (-2)

Much like the Rangers, the Wild also dropped a couple of spots more because of the teams above them being just a little bit hotter than their play. They lost in a shootout to those same Rangers to start the week but finished it off with wins over the Islanders and Coyotes.

12. Seattle Kraken

Record: 26-12-4 (.667%, 7th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +42 (1st)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.59 (t-18th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.45 (10th)
PP xGF/60: 5.92 (31st)
PK xGA/60: 7.73 (14th)
5v5 PDO: 103
Previous Week: 15th (+3)

No team is hotter than the Seattle Kraken right now, as they find themselves on an eight-game winning streak after taking all four of their games last week and even set a record by becoming the first NHL team to go 7-0 on a seven-game road trip. It should be no surprise that they moved up a few spots as well, although there’s still a bit of unsustainability to their game that keeps them from rising further.

13. Los Angeles Kings

Record: 25-15-6 (.609%, 12th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +2 (t-17th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.63 (t-16th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.36 (7th)
PP xGF/60: 7.64 (22nd)
PK xGA/60: 7.7 (13th)
5v5 PDO: 98.7
Previous Week: 11th (-2)

Much like a lot of the teams that have dropped in the rankings so far this week, the Kings did more so because of other teams being hot than them being cold. They started the week with wins over the Oilers and Sharks but saw their three-game winning streak come to an end due to a loss to the Devils.

14. Pittsburgh Penguins

Record: 21-15-6 (.571%, 15th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -4 (21st)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.82 (6th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.56 (16th)
PP xGF/60: 8.58 (13th)
PK xGA/60: 7.79 (15th)
5v5 PDO: 99.9
Previous Week: 14th (0)

The Penguins had a chaotic start to the week after they came back from down 3-0 just in the first period to beat the Canucks 5-4, but then followed it with two weak showings against the Jets and Canes where they couldn’t even get 35 percent of the 5-on-5 expected goals. They stay stationary as a result, although they would be a spot higher if not for the fact that the Kings have simply played four more games and gotten a sizeable point gap.

15. Washington Capitals

Record: 23-16-6 (.578%, 14th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +14 (t-7th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.63 (t-16th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.5 (12th)
PP xGF/60: 7.47 (23rd)
PK xGA/60: 8.33 (20th)
5v5 PDO: 100.9
Previous Week: 12th (-3)

The Capitals dropped down for the first time in a few weeks, and it was a significant drop thanks to the combination of only getting into two games and losing both of them. To make matters worse, both came against the Flyers, a team that they should probably beat if they want to keep in playoff contention.

16. Edmonton Oilers

Record: 24-18-3 (.567%, 16th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +2 (t-17th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.78 (11th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.65 (19th)
PP xGF/60: 9.99 (3rd)
PK xGA/60: 8.87 (27th)
5v5 PDO: 100.2
Previous Week: 18th (+2)

This might be the highest I’ve seen the Oilers on this list in a while, as they finally sneak into the top half thanks to what was overall a successful West Coast road trip. They dropped the first game to the Kings, but followed it up with three straight wins over the Ducks, Sharks, and Golden Knights, and even outscored the Ducks and Sharks by a combined margin of 13-3.

17. Florida Panthers

Record: 20-20-4 (.500%, t-23rd)
5v5 Goal Differential: +8 (13th)
5v5 xGF/60: 3.05 (3rd)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.58 (17th)
PP xGF/60: 9.22 (6th)
PK xGA/60: 7.69 (12th)
5v5 PDO: 99.7
Previous Week: 17th (0)

The Panthers had another week in which they chipped away at maybe making a playoff push, taking two of three with wins over the Avalanche and the Canucks. They don’t move up at all because they’re still that far behind the competition; otherwise, they would have been in 12th in the rankings.

18. New York Islanders

Record: 23-18-3 (.557%, 17th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +20 (6th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.57 (t-20th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.75 (23rd)
PP xGF/60: 8.22 (14th)
PK xGA/60: 8.13 (18th)
5v5 PDO: 101.9
Previous Week: 16th (-2)

The Islanders went back to their low-scoring ways this past week, scoring just four goals while allowing six, although that resulted in losing two of three games. That drops them down a couple of places as the Oilers are much hotter and the Panthers are finally within five points again.

19. Ottawa Senators

Record: 19-20-3 (.488%, 25th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -28 (29th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.81 (t-7th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.67 (20th)
PP xGF/60: 9.3 (5th)
PK xGA/60: 8.43 (22nd)
5v5 PDO: 97
Previous Week: 19th (0)

Last week was one that the Sens would surely like to forget, as they got shut out in both of their losses, got blown out 7-0 by the Avs in one of those losses, and their lone win came against a struggling Coyotes squad. There is some good news, though, as Josh Norris may be back as soon as this week after dealing with a shoulder injury that was expected to keep him out all season.

20. Colorado Avalanche

Record: 21-17-3 (.549%, 18th)
5v5 Goal Differential: 0 (20th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.57 (t-20th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.39 (9th)
PP xGF/60: 7.82 (20th)
PK xGA/60: 8.53 (24th)
5v5 PDO: 99.8
Previous Week: 20th (0)

The Avs stay in the 20th spot as they haven’t improved from where they stood last week, dropping their first two games of the week against the Panthers and Blackhawks before blowing out the Senators on Saturday. They also got the news that a lot of their key injured players still aren’t close to returning, so there’s still a lot of storm left for this team to weather.

21. Nashville Predators

Record: 19-17-6 (.524%, t-20th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +4 (15th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.8 (t-9th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.83 (t-25th)
PP xGF/60: 6.96 (25th)
PK xGA/60: 8.96 (28th)
5v5 PDO: 101
Previous Week: 22nd (+1)

It wasn’t the best Western Canadian road trip for the Predators, as after shutting out the Senators to start it off, they dropped two straight to the Leafs and Habs and followed it up with a loss at home to the Sabres. Ironically, they move up by passing the Sabres, as the play of the Predators has been slightly more sustainable than Buffalo’s.

22. Buffalo Sabres

Record: 21-18-2 (.537%, 19th)
5v5 Goal Differential: +3 (16th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.65 (15th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.71 (22nd)
PP xGF/60: 6.63 (26th)
PK xGA/60: 8.98 (29th)
5v5 PDO: 100.5
Previous Week: 21st (-1)

The Sabres had a similar week to the Preds, going 1-3 on the week as they lost to the Flyers, Kraken, and Jets before salvaging the week with that win over Nashville. With their hot streak of eight wins in nine games coming to an end with that three-game losing streak, it cools them down enough to drop a spot.

23. Detroit Red Wings

Record: 18-16-7 (.524%, t-20th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -7 (23rd)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.17 (29th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.7 (21st)
PP xGF/60: 7.75 (21st)
PK xGA/60: 8.37 (21st)
5v5 PDO: 100.4
Previous Week: 23rd (0)

If you looked at the Wings’ opponents this week, the Jets, Leafs, and Blue Jackets, you would have thought that they would lose the first two games and win the last one. Instead, it was the other way around, as they put seven goals past Connor Hellebuyck in a 7-5 win over the Jets and edged out the Leafs in a 4-1 victory before losing to the Blue Jackets.

24. Philadelphia Flyers

Record: 18-18-7 (.500%, t-23rd)
5v5 Goal Differential: -5 (22nd)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.33 (26th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.77 (24th)
PP xGF/60: 5.44 (32nd)
PK xGA/60: 8.46 (23rd)
5v5 PDO: 99.8
Previous Week: 27th (+3)

The Flyers continue to ruin their draft standing, as they won all three games last week and have now won seven of their past eight games. That moves them up three spots in the rankings, although some of that is more due to having the five-point rule on a couple of teams below them.

25. St. Louis Blues

Record: 21-20-3 (.511%, 22nd)
5v5 Goal Differential: -15 (25th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.43 (23rd)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.84 (27th)
PP xGF/60: 6.19 (28th)
PK xGA/60: 8.74 (26th)
5v5 PDO: 99.8
Previous Week: 24th (-1)

The Blues didn’t do a whole lot to help their chances of sneaking into the playoffs last week, barely beating the Flames in overtime to start a back-to-back with them before then dropping the second game to the Flames and following it up with a loss to the Lightning. They drop a place as a result, as well as with how hot the Flyers have been.

26. San Jose Sharks

Record: 13-23-8 (.386%, 28th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -19 (26th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.77 (12th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.55 (t-14th)
PP xGF/60: 8.17 (15th)
PK xGA/60: 7.44 (6th)
5v5 PDO: 98.5
Previous Week: 25th (-1)

It was a typical week for the Sharks, beating a weaker team to kick it off with a 4-2 win over the Coyotes before then losing to two playoff teams in the Kings and Oilers, with the Oilers’ loss being a nasty 7-1 blowout. The Sharks also dropped another spot as the Flyers have been added to the massive list of teams that have that five-point rule in effect on them.

27. Vancouver Canucks

Record: 18-22-3 (.453%, 26th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -12 (24th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.37 (25th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.92 (29th)
PP xGF/60: 8.07 (17th)
PK xGA/60: 8.66 (25th)
5v5 PDO: 100
Previous Week: 26th (-1)

The Canucks had an ugly start to last week, as they saw a first-period 3-0 lead get blown before the first 20 minutes was over, and that piled on to a four-game losing streak that was ended by a 4-3 win over the Hurricanes. They still should have been ahead of the Blues, but like the Sharks above them, they’re held back by the five-point rule.

28. Montreal Canadiens

Record: 18-23-3 (.443%, 27th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -22 (27th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.31 (27th)
5v5 xGA/60: 3.01 (31st)
PP xGF/60: 6.16 (29th)
PK xGA/60: 9.42 (30th)
5v5 PDO: 98.9
Previous Week: 28th (0)

The Canadiens had an alright week considering how things have been for them lately, splitting their four games with a loss to the Kraken, a win over the Preds, a loss to the Islanders, and a win over the Rangers. Those wins and their points from earlier in the year are the only reasons they aren’t lower, as they ranked 30th in the aggregate.

29. Columbus Blue Jackets

Record: 13-27-2 (.333%, 30th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -39 (30th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.22 (28th)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.86 (28th)
PP xGF/60: 7.31 (24th)
PK xGA/60: 8.21 (19th)
5v5 PDO: 98.1
Previous Week: 29th (0)

The Blue Jackets continue to be a team that’s ugly on the surface, but not nearly as ugly as the other teams in these final few spots, but it’s a blessing that they keep losing at this point to help their chances at Connor Bedard. Last week saw them drop six spots to the Lightning and Hurricanes before they bounced back with a win over the Red Wings.

30. Chicago Blackhawks

Record: 11-26-4 (.317%, 32nd)
5v5 Goal Differential: -49 (31st)
5v5 xGF/60: 1.9 (32nd)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.93 (30th)
PP xGF/60: 6.55 (27th)
PK xGA/60: 8.04 (17th)
5v5 PDO: 97.3
Previous Week: 32nd (+2)

The Blackhawks split their two games last week, starting with a shocking 3-2 win over the Avalanche before seeing a goaltending meltdown in an 8-5 loss to the Kraken, a game that saw them down 6-1 after just the first period. However, their win played a big role in their ranking this week, as it got them out of the five-point rule jail behind the Coyotes and up a couple of places as a result.

31. Anaheim Ducks

Record: 12-27-4 (12-27-4 (.326%, 31st)
5v5 Goal Differential: -60 (32nd)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.15 (30th)
5v5 xGA/60: 3.53 (32nd)
PP xGF/60: 8.16 (16th)
PK xGA/60: 10.13 (32nd)
5v5 PDO: 97.4
Previous Week: 30th (-1)

There probably isn’t much more to say about how bad this Ducks team has been, but they may have even reached a new low last week. While a three-game losing streak is nothing out of the ordinary for them, getting outscored 19-5 in those three games might be, and they drop a place because of it.

32. Arizona Coyotes

Record: 13-25-5 (.360%, 29th)
5v5 Goal Differential: -24 (28th)
5v5 xGF/60: 2.01 (31st)
5v5 xGA/60: 2.83 (t-25th)
PP xGF/60: 5.94 (30th)
PK xGA/60: 9.95 (31st)
5v5 PDO: 99.8
Previous Week: 31st (-1)

Remember when the Coyotes were surprising and putting together some wins against teams like the Leafs and Bruins? That is very much in the past at this point, as they now have a nine-game losing streak, with all of them coming in regulation, and with that, they move into the lowest spot in the rankings.

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