NHL Power Rankings – Week 12

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Welcome to the next installment of HockeyClan’s weekly NHL power rankings. Each week throughout the season, HockeyClan ranks every team in the National Hockey League from top to bottom.

Who’s #1? Who’s rising? Who’s falling? It’s week 12 in the NHL season. Stay tuned each week for updates in our power rankings!

Mikhail Sergachev #98 of the Tampa Bay Lightning splits the defense of Brendan Gallagher #11 and Jeff Petry #26 of the Montreal Canadiens during the second period at Amalie Arena on December 28, 2017 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)

1-Tampa Bay Lightning (27-7-2) 23rd in the league on the kill! Fortunately, Tampa is tops in offense (134 GF), tops on the power play (25.7%) while yielding second-best 87 goals allowed. Wins: FLA, WAS, PIT, DET, STL, CBJ, PIT, CAR, DET, FLA, CBJ, LA, SJ, ANA, DAL, CHI, BUF, SJ, NYI, COL, WIN, STL, AZ, COL, OTT, MIN, MON Last: 1

2-Nashville Predators (22-9-5) 6-2-2 over their last 10 games. Top-eight in every single category (115 GF, 7th; 96 GA, 5th; 25% PP, 3rd; 82.9% PK, 8th) all the while committing a league-high 511 penalty minutes. Wins: PHI, DAL, COL, PHI, CHI, ANA, LA, CBJ, PIT, WAS, COL, WIN, MON, STL, CHI, ANA, BOS, DAL, VAN, EDM, CAL, STL Last: 2

3-New Jersey Devils (22-9-5) Five-game winning streak vaults Devils into the top tier for the first time this season. Brian Boyle has been everything and more in Jersey. Wins: COL, BUF, TOR, NYR, TB, OTT, OTT, AZ, VAN, FLA, CHI, MIN, VAN, DET, COL, CBJ, LA, DAL, ANA, NYR, CHI, DET Last: 8

4-Vegas Golden Knights (25-9-2) 9-0-1 in their last 10 games! Winners of six straight including 3-2 triumph over LA Friday night. Time to give credit when credit’s due. Wins: DAL, AZ, AZ, BOS, BUF, STL, CHI, COL, OTT, WIN, VAN, LA, ANA, SJ, AZ, AZ, ANA, PIT, DAL, NAS FLA, TB, WAS, ANA, LA Last: 10

5-Los Angeles Kings (22-11-5) Little bit of a bump in the road, dropping last two, but this is still one of the best defensive teams in the league with third-best 88 goals allowed and NHL-best penalty killing unit (87%). Wins: PHI, SJ, BUF, NYI, CBJ, MON, OTT, MON, BOS, TOR, ANA, FLA, ANA, DET, WAS. STL, CHI, MIN, OTT Last: 3

6-Winnipeg Jets (21-11-6) Offense wins championships and the Jets are putting the puck in the net at a remarkable rate. Fourth-best 124 goals-for, fourth-best power play converting 23.4% of the time, but now Mark Scheifele is out 6-to-8 weeks. Wins: EDM, VAN, CAR, MIN, PIT, MIN, DAL, DAL, AZ, AZ, PHI, NJ, LA, ANA, MIN, VGK, OTT, VAN, STL, NAS, EDM Last: 7

7-Toronto Maple Leafs (23-14-1) Arizona native Auston Matthews nets first goal in his home state against Coyotes. 107 goals allowed (14th) still a concern for Babcock’s bunch. Wins: WIN, NYR, CHI, MON, WAS, DET, LA, ANA, VGK, MIN, BOS, BOS, NJ, MON, CAR, CAL, EDM, CAL, PIT, EDM, CAR, NYR, AZ Last: 5

8-St. Louis Blues (23-14-2) Just four wins in their last 10. But the Blues are too talented to drop out of the upper echelon just yet. Wins: PIT, DAL, NYI, NYR, CHI, COL, CAL, CAR, CBJ, LA, TOR, NJ, AZ, EDM, VAN, EDM, MIN, MON, DAL, DET, BUF, VAN, WIN Last: 4

Related: NHL Power Rankings Week 10

Tier Two

Sonny Milano #22 of the Columbus Blue Jackets celebrates with teammates on the bench after scoring a goal in the first period during the game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at PPG Paints Arena on December 27, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

9-Columbus Blue Jackets (22-13-3) Injuries are starting to mount as Jax drop out of upper tier for the first time in several weeks. Is this really the second-worst power play unit (11.8%) in the league? Wins: NYI, CAR, NYR, MIN, WIN, BUF, WIN, BOS, FLA, DET, MON, NYR, BUF, CAL, OTT, CAR, ANA, NJ, AZ, NYI, TOR, PHI Last: 6

10-Washington Capitals (23-13-3) 6-2-2 over their last 10 as Caps continue to be among the toughest outs in The League, especially at home where they are 15-5 at Capital One Arena. Wins: OTT, MON, NJ, DET, EDM, NYI, BOS, AZ, PIT, EDM, MIN, OTT, TB, TOR, CBJ, SJ, CHI, NYR, COL, BOS, ANA, DAL, BOS Last: 10

11-San Jose Sharks (20-11-4) Winners of three straight and 6-2-2 over their last 10. Brent Burns (6-19-25) starting to find his groove on best defensive team in the league (85 goals allowed). Wins: BUF, MON, NJ, NYR, BUF, TOR, NAS, ANA, VAN, LA, AZ, WIN, PHI, FLA, CAR, OTT, CAL, VAN, LA, CAL Last: 15

12-Boston Bruins (20-10-6) Arguably the hottest team in the league taking 16 out of a possible 20 points over its last 10 games (7-1-2). Getting it done defensively with fourth-best 92 goals allowed and fifth-best PK (83.8%). Wins: NAS, AZ, VAN, SJ, VGK, MIN, LA, SJ, NJ, PIT, TB, PHI, AZ, NYI, DET, CBJ, BUF, WIN, DET, OTT Last: 19

13-Dallas Stars (20-15-3) Have dropped three of their last five. Free Agent goalie Ben Bishop continues to be a work in progress. Wins: DET, COL, AZ, AZ, CAR, CAL, VAN, BUF, NYI, EDM, MON, CAL, VGK, CHI, CHI, COL, NYR, NYI, CHI, NAS Last: 12

14-Pittsburgh Penguins (19-16-3) Many a favorite to repeat as Stanley Cup champions, the Pens are now tied with the Canes for the second-to-last in the Metro. Still, its best not to bet against Sid. Wins: NSH, WAS, FLA, NYR, FLA, EDM, WIN, EDM, AZ, BUF, OTT, TB, PHI, BUF, BUF, NYI, AZ, CBJ, CBJ Last: 11

15-New York Islanders (20-13-4) 12-3-3 at Barclays Center. Isles may not want to go to Belmont Park. (Yes, they do). Wins: BUF, SJ, NYR, SJ, AZ, NAS, VGK, COL, STL, CAR, TB, PHI, PHI, OTT, VAN, FLA, WAS, LA, WIN, BUF Last: 13

16-New York Rangers (20-13-4) Have cooled off after November-December surge, but Rangers are now plus-14 in goal differential — thanks in large part to The Return of the King. Wins: MON, NSH, AZ, VGK, TB, FLA, CBJ, BOS, EDM, OTT, CAR, DET, VAN, CAR, PIT, NJ, LA, BOS, ANA, WAS Last: 18

Related: NHL Power Rankings Week Nine

Tier Three

Minnesota Wild defenseman Jared Spurgeon (46), center, is congratulated after scoring in the first period to tie the game at 1-1 during the Central Division game between the Dallas Stars and the Minnesota Wild on December 27, 2017 at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. (Photo by David Berding/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

17-Minnesota Wild (19-15-3) Former Sharks castaway Alex Stalock has filled in admirably for injured Devan Dubnyk. Wild continue to be one the best in the State of Hockey with an 11-4-2 record at Xcel Energy Center. Wins: CHI, CAL, NYI, MON, PIT, MON, PHI, PHI, NAS, BUF, COL, VGK, STL, ANA, SJ, CAL, TOR, OTT, DAL Last: 16

18-Chicago Blackhawks (17-14-5) Are just not playing sound defensive hockey at the moment. Lack of accountability and now their best player — Corey Crawford — is back on the shelf with an upper-body injury. Wins: PIT, CBJ, MON, NSH, AZ, PHI, MIN, CAR, NYR, PIT, FLA, ANA, BUF, FLA, AZ, WIN, MIN Last: 14

19-Calgary Flames (18-15-4) 9-11 at home but 9-4-4 on the road seems strange. After a White Christmas, a post-season berth tops goalie Mike Smith’s Santa Wishlist. Wins: WIN, ANA, LA, VAN, NSH, WAS, PIT, NJ, DET, STL, PHI, WAS, COL, AZ, MON, VAN, VAN, STL Last: 17

20-Anaheim Ducks (16-14-8) Welcome back Ryan Kesler. His in-your-face style of play is exactly what Quacks need right now. Don’t sleep on the Ducks. This is a team built for post-season success. Wins: AZ, NYI, MON, PHI, TB, CAR, VAN, BOS, FLA, SJ, STL, OTT, CAR, STL, NYI, PIT Last: 20

21-Carolina Hurricanes (17-12-7) Don’t look now but the Canes have won five of their last six, including three straight. Staying out of the sin bin has been key, too, with league-low 225 PIMs. Wins: MIN, EDM, CAL, TOR, FLA, CBJ, DAL, BUF, NYI, NAS, FLA, VGK, BUF, CBJ, NAS, BUF, MON Last: 24

22-Philadelphia Flyers (15-14-8) Shades of previous 10-game losing streak whispering sweet nothings in the hallowed hallways of Wells Fargo Center. Have dropped three straight and four of their last five. Wins: SJ, ANA, WAS, FLA, EDM, TOR, STL, CHI, CAL, EDM, VAN, TOR, BUF, DAL, DET Last: 22

23-Edmonton Oilers (17-18-2) Finally starting to show signs of breaking out of this winter slumber with four wins over their last five. McDavid and Co. starting to find their groove and it’s not too late. Wins: CAL, CHI, DAL, NJ, NYI, NJ, VGK, DET, BOS, AZ, CAL, MON, CBJ, MIN, SJ, STL, MON Last: 29

24-Montreal Canadiens (16-18-4) Losers of three straight and just 3-6-1 over their last 10. Not exactly what les bleu, blanc et rouge envisioned. Wins: BUF, FLA, NYR, OTT, WIN, CHI, VGK, BUF, BUF, CBJ, OTT, DET, DET, NJ, VAN, CAL Last 21

Related: NHL Power Rankings Week Eight

Tier Four

Florida Panthers goalie James Reimer (34) watches for the puck during the NHL hockey game between the Florida Panthers and the Arizona Coyotes on December 19, 2017 at Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

25-Florida Panthers (16-16-5) Winners of four straight have Cats back in the race thanks to James Reimer who has performed better than expected after Roberto Luongo went down. Wins: TB, STL, WAS, ANA, BUF, DAL, SJ, TOR, NJ, NYR, WIN, DET, AZ, MIN, OTT, PHI Last: 26

26-Colorado Avalanche (17-16-3) Still competitive on a nightly basis behind Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog. Respectable 112 goals-for ranks 10 in the league. PK is still a liability, however, with sixth-worst 83.5% shutdown rate. Wins: NYR, BOS, BOS, ANA, DAL, CHI, CAR, PHI, WAS, DET, DAL, WIN, FLA, PIT, FLA, PIT, AZ Last: 25

27-Vancouver Canucks (16-17-5) Mired in a 2-7-1 stretch over their last 10 games. Sedins still a force with the man-advantage, converting 21.4% of the time (8th in NHL). Wins: EDM, OTT, BUF, DET, MIN, WAS, PIT, CAL, LA, PHI, PIT, NAS, TOR, CAR, SJ, CHI Last: 23

28-Detroit Red Wings (13-16-7) Losers of three straight and just 3-5-2 in last 10, but you really have to like how captain Henrik Zetterberg is facing the music. Wins: MIN, OTT, AZ, VGK, FLA, AZ, EDM, VAN, CAL, BUF, WIN, TOR, NYI Last: 27

29-Ottawa Senators (11-16-8) Losers of four straight and it seems only a matter of time before perennial Norris Trophy candidate, Erik Karlsson, is shipped out of Canada’s capitol. Wins: VAN, CAL, EDM, TOR, PHI, DET, COL, COL, NYI, NYR, MON Last: 28

30-Buffalo Sabres (9-20-8) Minus-43 goal differential and now they’ll take their game outside in the Winter Classic at CitiField. Can’t get any colder, can it? Wins: ANA, BOS, DET, AZ, WAS, EDM, COL, OTT, PHI Last: 30

31-Arizona Coyotes (9-26-5) Minus-49 goal differential is NHL-worst. And if it couldn’t get any uglier, Zac Rinaldo was suspended six games for sucker punch. Wins: PHI, CAR, MON, OTT, TOR, LA, NJ, WAS, COL Last: 31

* records and rankings through 12/28

 

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Main Image: Brian Campbell #51 and Ryan Miller #30 of the Buffalo Sabres defend the net against Jordan Staal #11 of the Pittsburgh Penguins during the NHL Winter Classic at the Ralph Wilson Stadium on January 1, 2008 in Buffalo, New York. The Sabres will battle the New York Rangers in the 2018 Winter Classic 10 years later at Citi Field in Queens. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

 

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