Oct. 25, 2016
Week 3 2016-17 NHL Power Rankings
Canadian NHL teams have been tearing it up in the 2016-17 NHL season, but will any of these teams be in the NHL Power Rankings this week?
10. Detroit Red Wings: The Detroit Red Wings are off to a great start in the young season. Most of it is because the Red Wings are sending off the Joe Louis Arena. The Red Wings were 3-0-0 last week. But they currently go into these rankings on a four-game winning streak and are playing at a better pace than they were last week.
9. Minnesota Wild: As expected, the Minnesota Wild have improved in Bruce Boudreau's first season. Despite losing to the New York Islanders, the Wild are getting better. The goaltending has gotten better. Zach Parise has been good. But Parise has to continue to be a better player for this team to make this team special in the postseason.
8. Florida Panthers: The Florida are still in these rankings despite losing Nick Bjugstad, and Jonathan Huberdeau to injuries. But Colton Sceviour and Jon Marchessault have stepped up in their absence. Nine points between these two. I want to see more on the offensive side, but the Panthers still have a deep team, which will keep them in these rankings next week.
7. Tampa Bay Lightning: It was interesting last week, with comebacks as the theme. But the Lightning jumps up two spots this week. The only downside was a defeat to the Colorado Avalanche. Still, the Lightning is balanced on offense, and getting production from all of its players. All players have played in every game this year, but four of those players need to get points. Ben Bishop hasn't been himself, but they do have Andrei Vasilevskiy.
6. Washington Capitals: The Washington Capitals have started great in their games and have not given up a goal in the third period. But I have some bad news; the Caps are killing themselves in the second period. The team has given up six goals in the second period. Hopefully, this team figures out the second-period issues.
5. Vancouver Canucks: Okay, I have been impressed with this Canucks squad. I expected this team to be a bottom tier team in the NHL this season, but the Canucks sit in third place in the Western Conference. However, there are some concerns. Last week, I mentioned how this team was playing well. This week? It's a different story. Jacob Markstrom has been great, but can he continue his momentum? It's something we have to wait and see.
4. New York Rangers: The New York Rangers are off to a great start in their young NHL season. Led by a new depth in forward, the Rangers are playing good hockey early in the season. Their defense still has issues, but Henrik Lundqvist is the best in the world. If anyone wants to challenge me, King Lundqvist has shut out the Washington Capitals and the Arizona Coyotes. It's still a question if the offense can play well, but until then, the Rangers are in these rankings.
3. St. Louis Blues: The St. Louis Blues answered questions about the Western Conference jinx after starting out strong in their NHL season. Their lone setbacks are against teams like the Canucks, and Edmonton Oilers. Even though they have given up four goals to the Calgary Flames, the defense ranks second in fewest goals allowed. However, the Blues are tied for third with 19 goals scored.
2. Edmonton Oilers: The Oilers got the reality check they needed after playing the Buffalo Sabres. Since then, Cam Talbot has been great, getting his first star of the week. There is a little bit of concern on Connor McDavid, but they have improved in that area. The biggest question is if the Oilers can continue to play defense. Talbot could help them in the short term, but the Oilers need to continue to win games. The Oilers face a tough challenge tomorrow night against the Washington Capitals. Let's see if they pass this latest test.
1. Montreal Canadiens: Welcome back Carey Price because the Habs are in first place this week. While the Canadiens still have some weaknesses, Price has overcome those weaknesses, if not, all of those weaknesses. If Price does get injured, Al Montaya performed well as people did not expect that. For this week, congrats to the Habs on getting first place in these rankings.