Top 10 NHL Teams Entering Week 22
An overview of the week to come.
With the NHL trade deadline at 3 p.m. on Monday, teams will be looking to improve there roster before the stretch run. How will teams play with there new assets after that? The NHL playoffs aren't far away and they begin on April 11. The regular season ends on April 7. Here are this week's top 10 teams:
10. Minnesota Wild: The Minnesota Wild are starting to make some noise in the Western Conference. They have currently leapfrogged up to the number three spot currently in the Central Division. Minnesota is currently on a four-game winning streak and they are 7-1-2 in their last ten games. The Wild have different players stepping up and goaltender Devan Dubnyk has been very good. His record so far this season is 26-11-5 with a .919 save percentage and a 2.55 GAA, along with four shutouts. Backup Alex Stalock has also been very good for the Wild so far this season. His record is 9-9-2 with a .916 save percentage and a 2.76 GAA, along with one shutout. Eric Staal leads the Wild with 59 points (30 goals and 29 assists). Mikael Granlund has scored 17 goals and recorded 32 assists so far this season. Minnesota's record so far this season is 35-20-7 with 77 points. Last week's ranking: not ranked.
9. Washington Capitals: Washington is back in the lead in the Metropolitan Division at the moment, but both the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Philadelphia Flyers are currently one point back of them. Braden Holtby continues to struggle, but the Capitals offence has been carrying them. The Capitals only have a plus 10 goal differential so far this season (194 goals scored/184 goals given up). They could use some help on defence at the trade deadline. Ovechkin continues to light the lamp for the Capitals and he has scored 38 goals so far this season. Washington's record so far this season is 35-20-7 with 77 points. Last week's ranking: 9.
8. Philadelphia Flyers: Someone needs to call the fire department because the Flyers have won five consecutive games and they are 9-0-1 in their last ten games. Philadelphia continues to get production from the top line. Nolan Patrick is starting to come along a little bit. He has scored a goal in each of his last four games and that is a good sign for the Flyers since he was the number two overall pick. Patrick has only scored nine total goals this season. They traded for goalie Petr Mrazek from the Detroit Red Wings and he has played well for them so far. Mrazek won both of his starts against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday Night (W, 2-1) and Saturday Afternoon on the road against the Ottawa Senators (W, 5-3). Mrazek has made 44 out of 48 saves so far in Philadelphia. Their record so far this season is 33-19-10 with 76 points. Last week's ranking: 8.
7. Boston Bruins: Boston had a rough 4-3 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs on the road on Saturday Night. Boston has been going through a cool down period right now. They have lost two in a row and only won six-out-of-10. Brad Marchand had a game-winning overtime goal on Monday Afternoon against the Calgary Flames (2-1). Marchand has scored 24 goals and recorded 34 assists so far this season. Boston's record so far this season is 37-15-8 with 82 points. Last week's ranking: 5.
6. Pittsburgh Penguins: Pittsburgh dominated the Carolina Hurricanes 6-1 on Friday Night and lost a heartbreaker after being down three goals to the Florida Panthers 6-5 on Saturday Night. Evgeni Malkin is playing at an MVP like level right now and he has scored 36 goals and recorded 40 assists so far this season. Malkin is six points behind Tampa Bay's Nikita Kucherov for the most in the NHL. The Penguins have scored 206 goals so far this season and they have given up 187 goals. Pittsburgh acquired Derrick Brassard from the Ottawa Senators in a trade on Friday. Pittsburgh's record so far this season is 36-23-4 with 76 points. Last week's ranking: 3.
5. Toronto Maple Leafs: Toronto defeated Boston 4-3 on Saturday Night and it was a huge win for the Maple Leafs. Ron Hainsey scored the game-winning goal with under 1:30 remaining in regulation. The Maple Leafs are just four points behind the Tampa Bay Lightning for first in the Atlantic Division. Auston Mathews continues to lead by example and Toronto has scored 213 goals so far this season which is the third most in the NHL. Their record so far this season is 39-20-5 with 83 points. Last week's record: 6.
4. Winnipeg Jets: The Jets just acquired Paul Stastny from the St. Louis Blues. He will help them on the penalty kill and provide some more depth for the Winnipeg Jets. The Jets continue to cause problems for opponents. They will be a threat come playoff time. Winnipeg has scored 208 goals and given up 164 goals so far this season. The Jets have scored the fourth most goals in the NHL so far this season. Winnipeg's record so far this season is 37-16-9 with 83 points. Last week's ranking: 4.
3. Vegas Golden Knights: The Golden Knights have scored 215 goals so far this season and that is the second most in the NHL. Vegas has only given up 166 goals and the Golden Knights have the second best goal differential in the NHL at 49. Will the Vegas Golden Knights make a move at the deadline or will they stay pat? William Karlsson continues to be a threat offensively. He has scored 33 goals and recorded 22 assists so far this season. Vegas's record so far this season is 41-16-4 with 86 points. Last week's ranking: 1.
2. Nashville Predators: The Predators are a team that's on a mission right now. They just acquired Ryan Hartman from the Chicago Blackhawks and he will help this offense out. Nashville has won four consecutive games and they are 6-2-2 in their last 10. Pekka Rinne posted another shutout on Sunday Afternoon in a 4-0 win against the St. Louis Blues. Rinne's record so far this season is 32-9-4 with a /929 save percentage and a 2.27 GAA, along with six shutouts. The Predators lead the league in points scored by defenseman with 152. Nashville's record so far this season is 38-14-9 with 85 points. Last week's ranking: 7.
1.Tampa Bay Lightning: Tampa Bay is the best team in the NHL, but they might make a trade before the deadline. Nikita Kucherov leads the league in points with 82 (33 goals and 49 assists). Steven Stamkos has scored 24 goals and recorded 46 assists so far this season for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Brayden Point continues to be a surprise for Tampa Bay this season with 25 goals and 29 assists. Andrei Vasilevskiy's record so far this season is 36-12-2 with a .927 save percentage and a 2.34 GAA, along with seven shutouts. Tampa Bay has scored 223 goals so far this season and they have given up 167. They have the best goal differential in the NHL (56). The Tampa Bay Lightning's record so far this season is 42-17-3 with 87 points. Last week's ranking: 2.