NHL Power Rankings

Power rankings are updated every Tuesday throughout the NHL season.

Rank   Team Record   Change   Comment
1 Montreal Canadiens Montreal Canadiens 16-4-2
▲ 1
This is simply the most talent the Canadiens have had in many years. If head coach Michel Therrien can keep the group focused, the sky’s the limit.
2 New York Rangers New York Rangers 15-7-1
▲ 1
Rangers fans may be tough and cynical, but at the end of the day, they have to be appreciative of the NY team for which expectations were rather low when the season began.
3 Chicago Blackhawks Chicago Blackhawks 14-6-3
▼ 2
They were not stopped by the salary cap, but a recent injury to Jonathan Toews may slow them down a bit. An upper-body injury has forced the team captain to miss the last two games.
4 St. Louis Blues St. Louis Blues 12-7-3
▲ 3
After a brief lull, the Blues have returned to playing reliable, solid hockey. Forward Vladimir Tarasenko is on pace to score 40 goals again this season.
5 Washington Capitals Washington Capitals 13-6-2
Forward Justin Williams only has two goals in 21 games. If Williams gets back to the form that earned him 59 goals over the past three seasons, the Caps will benefit greatly.
6 Boston Bruins Boston Bruins 12-10
▼ 2
David Backes is on pace to score 20 goals in his first season with the Bruins. This added scoring punch, combined with great goaltending from Tuukka Rask, should work out well.
7 Columbus Blue Jackets Columbus Blue Jackets 11-5-4
▲ 3
Solid team play and reliable goaltending have quietly pushed this small-market franchise into a spot amongst the elite teams of the Eastern Conference.
8 Ottawa Senators Ottawa Senators 14-7-1
▲ 4
With a record of 7-2-1 in the last 10 games and riding a four-game win streak, the Sens are becoming a force in the Eastern Conference.
9 Pittsburgh Penguins Pittsburgh Penguins 13-6-3
▼ 3
Forwards Chris Kunitz (lower-body injury) and Patric Hornqvist (concussion) are out of the lineup. It could be a tough holiday season.
10 New Jersey Devils New Jersey Devils 10-6-5
▲ 1
It took him a while to get going, but forward Michael Cammalleri is now rolling - he has four goals and four assists in his last three games.
11 Los Angeles Kings Los Angeles Kings 12-9-1
▲ 3
Riding a five-game win streak, the team is finally getting healthy, and goaltender Peter Budaj is becoming more and more reliable with every game. Kings now have sights set on a Pacific Division lead.
12 Tampa Bay Lightning Tampa Bay Lightning 13-9-1
▼ 4
As good as the Lightning are, they’re simply not that great of a regular season team. A little more focus and resolve during the regular season might get them over the hump come playoff time.
13 San Jose Sharks San Jose Sharks 12-9-1
▼ 4
The reigning Western Conference champs are very close to claiming the top spot in the Pacific division. The recent signing of defenseman Brent Burns to a multi-year deal was a must for the Sharks.
14 Edmonton Oilers Edmonton Oilers 12-9-2
▲ 2
The Oilers still lead the Pacific Division, but are not playing nearly as well as they did at the start of the season. It’s gut-check time.
15 Anaheim Ducks Anaheim Ducks 10-8-4
Both Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry recently ended long goal-scoring droughts. Forward Jakob Silfverberg (seven goals in 22 games) has been a pleasant surprise.
16 Minnesota Wild Minnesota Wild 11-7-3
▲ 1
The Wild awakened from their slumber at just the right time to prevent the Predators from overtaking them in the Central Division. It should be a good battle for the rest of the season.
17 Nashville Predators Nashville Predators 10-8-3
▲ 3
In his last six games, defenseman P.K. Subban has two goals and four assists. Not surprisingly, his play has elevated the team. Preds are now back in the playoff race.
18 Florida Panthers Florida Panthers 11-10-1
▼ 5
The coaching tenure of Gerard Gallant ended rather abruptly, but there is no reason to doubt the wisdom of GM Dale Tallon, as he was the chief architect of the recent Chicago Blackhawks dynasty.
19 Dallas Stars Dallas Stars 9-8-5
▼ 1
Still playing a mediocre brand of hockey, the Stars are still showing no real signs of consistency. Come playoff time, they may wind up on the outside looking in.
20 Toronto Maple Leafs Toronto Maple Leafs 9-8-4
▲ 1
Leafs fans remain cautiously optimistic. In the end, the Leafs may be the team to fill that playoff spot the New York Islanders are giving up.
21 Winnipeg Jets Winnipeg Jets 10-12-2
▼ 2
The Jets are still not an elite team, but there is more skill to go along with the physical play. If the Jets can find a balance, they could become quite tough to beat.
22 Carolina Hurricanes Carolina Hurricanes 9-8-4
It has been a very slow burn, but these Hurricanes are beginning to play good hockey. They have a record of 6-3-1 in the last 10 games.
23 Philadelphia Flyers Philadelphia Flyers 10-10-3
The Flyers are still the most puzzling team in the NHL. There is little rhyme or reason as to when and why they play so well or so poorly on any given night.
24 Detroit Red Wings Detroit Red Wings 10-10-2
This transitional season continues to be a struggle, but Wings are showing a great deal of pride; they refuse to go quietly.
25 Calgary Flames Calgary Flames 10-13-2
▲ 2
Flames must at least be thankful for goaltender Chad Johnson, who has stepped up and filled the void left by Brian Elliott’s curiously bad play between the pipes.
26 Vancouver Canucks Vancouver Canucks 9-11-2
▲ 2
Although their record may not be terrific thus far, upon closer examination, the building blocks for the future are firmly in place.
27 Colorado Avalanche Colorado Avalanche 9-10-1
▼ 2
Still teetering on the edge, once forward Gabriel Landeskog (lower-body injury) and goaltender Semyon Varlamov (upper-body injury) are back in the lineup; good things may begin to happen.
28 Arizona Coyotes Arizona Coyotes 8-10-2
▲ 2
Although their record may not be terrific thus far, upon closer examination, the building blocks for the future are firmly in place.
29 New York Islanders New York Islanders 7-10-4
▼ 3
Florida Panthers head coach Gerard Gallant was recently relieved of duty. This begs the question: How much longer will Islanders head coach Jack Capuano be allowed to pilot his sinking ship?
30 Buffalo Sabres Buffalo Sabres 7-9-5
▼ 1
Rumor has it that sensational young forward Jack Eichel (high ankle sprain) may soon return to the lineup for the first time since Oct. 7. This will at least make the Sabres a lot more fun to watch.


About The Ranker:

Charles Smith Jr. spent his entire childhood in southern California before joining the military. Although passionate about all sports, his main focus is on ice hockey—a sport he has played and/or coached since 1975. In 1994, Mr. Smith created the sports talk show ‘INSIDE SPORTS,’ and also became a credentialed member of NHL media. All his latest articles and webcasts are available online at  www.Officialinsidesports.com 

You can reach Charles at Charles@Officialinsidesports.com and follow him on Twitter at @TheInsideSports

More From CBS Connecticut

WTIC Holiday Stores 2016
Hear WTIC Podcasts
The Latest UConn News

Listen Live