Flames, Jets make big jumps up NHL Power Ranking
After a brief hiatus from the top spot in our Power Rankings, the defending Stanley Cup champion Vegas Golden Knights are back on top.
Despite an average 1-1-0 week, Vegas’ overall results and strong underlying numbers give the team a slight edge on the competition – for now. The Golden Knights rank second in goal differential and eighth in expected goal differential. The 12-2-1 Knights kick off a five-game road trip Tuesday in Washington.
The Vancouver Canucks are the highest-ranked Canadian team for a second straight week, falling one spot to fourth overall. The slight drop has less to do with their performance, 3-1-0 last week, and more to do with top teams around them.
The Canucks are solid and goal and are playing strong defensive hockey. Vancouver’s 4.40 goals per game is the best in the NHL, but far outpaces its 3.19 expected goals per game which ranks 18th. That differential of 1.21 goals between process and results is by far the biggest in the league and, as it normalizes in a larger sample, the Canucks will need to lean on their defensive play to continue to win games at a similar rate.
After winning two of three games last week, the Winnipeg Jets climbed six spots to crack the top 10 on our list. Kyle Connor and Mark Scheifele are filling the scoresheet as of late, each with eight points in their last three games. Connor’s 11 goals rank third in the NHL, two back of Leafs sniper Auston Matthews for the league lead.
The Ottawa Senators are up seven spots, from 22nd to 15th thanks to wins against Toronto and Calgary. The Senators lost in regulation to the Canucks, but they outplayed Vancouver for a majority of that game, outshooting them 30-16 in a 5-2 loss.
The Senators are performing well offensively and defensively, but the team continues to be plagued by subpar goaltending. Ottawa is allowing 0.54 goals above expected per game this season, 28th in the league.
The Toronto Maple Leafs are up one spot from 21st to 20th on our list. The Leafs won three of four games last week, but the underlying numbers are still shaky for a team that is reliant on outscoring its defensive shortcomings.
Toronto made an adjustment to its fourth line, sitting Ryan Reaves in favour of Bobby McMann in its most recent game against the Canucks and saw immediate results, with Noah Gregor and David Kampf both finding the scoresheet. Another week like the one we just saw, and the Leafs should move farther up our list.
The Calgary Flames take a step in the right direction this week, climbing to 23rd from 30th on our list. The Flames are coming off a mediocre 1-1-0 week but are a team whose process has been better than its results.
Calgary ranks 29th in goal differential and points percentage, 23rd in expected goal differential and on our list. Neither screams playoff team, but we expect the Flames to move up in the standings over the coming week.
The Montreal Canadiens are up two spots from 26th to 24th. If every game went to 3-on-3 overtime, the Habs would be at the top of our list. Montreal is a perfect 4-0 in overtime this season, including an OT win against the Bruins on Saturday night.
The Habs are still giving up a ton of chances, ranking 29th in expected goal differential but when their goalies can keep games close, Montreal has proven to be a dangerous team.
Lastly, the Edmonton Oilers are up three spots from 29th to 26th. Edmonton is hoping a convincing win over the Seattle Kraken Saturday night, coupled with a coaching change, will prove to be a turning point in their season.
Jay Woodcroft is out, Kris Knoblauch is in. The Oilers sit 31st in goal differential and fifth in expected goal differential. A majority of that anomaly comes in how much the team has underperformed offensively relative to the chances it has created. While goaltending deserves much of the blame for the team's poor start, don’t be surprised to see positive regression offensively. This team is going to start scoring more and winning more as a result.
NHL Power Ranking - November 13
|RK||Team||Last Week||Record||Avg. Goal Diff||xGoal Diff||PT%|
|1||Vegas Golden Knights||2||12-2-1||1.53||.43||.833|
|2||Los Angeles Kings||1||8-3-3||1.14||1.01||.679|
|5||New York Rangers||6||11-2-1||1.14||.18||.821|
|11||Detroit Red Wings||13||8-5-2||.40||.18||.600|
|14||St. Louis Blues||25||7-5-1||.08||-.10||.577|
|18||New Jersey Devils||5||7-3-1||0||.39||.682|
|20||Toronto Maple Leafs||21||8-5-2||0||.02||.600|
|21||Tampa Bay Lightning||8||6-5-4||-.07||.02||.533|
|28||New York Islanders||18||5-5-3||-.62||-.88||.500|
|30||Columbus Blue Jackets||27||4-7-4||-.73||-.83||.400|
|32||San Jose Sharks||32||2-12-1||-3.20||-2.01||.045|