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NHL Power Ranking: The Oilers are back

Stuart Skinner stops Morgan Barron Stuart Skinner stops Morgan Barron - The Canadian Press

There is no change at the top of the Power Rankings this week, as the Los Angeles Kings retain their throne.

They went 1-1-0 during a light week, but they continue to show their stifling defence. The Kings have allowed two or fewer goals in each of their last seven games, winning all but one. The metrics continue to back up their play, as they lead the NHL in goal and expected goal differential. All is sunny in Los Angeles.

We do, however, have a new top Canadian team, with Vancouver retaining their top-five spot while Winnipeg falls.

Vancouver’s ridiculous scoring pace to open the season has started to cool off but they remain a top-10 team in expected goal differential, showing that the process is still worthy of being called a contender. A 4-1 loss to the Knights, however, is a stark reminder that top five in the NHL isn’t yet good enough to be one of the top two teams in the top-heavy Pacific, at least when looking at points percentage and the Power Rankings.

Edmonton is back. Winners of their past four by a combined score of 21-7, the results are finally starting to come for a team that ranks in the top three in expected goal differential yet still has a -5 goal differential.

Connor McDavid has scored in each of his past six games, including four multi-point efforts, and the goaltending has held up, allowing two or fewer in three of the four wins. The Oilers now get five days of rest before playing their next six games at home, starting Wednesday against the Hurricanes.

It was a tough week for the Jets. After climbing all the way up to fourth last Power Ranking, they’ve fallen a week-high nine spots, tied with the Lightning for the biggest drop.

Their offence has been quiet, scoring only three goals during a three-game losing streak, a total they matched against the Blackhawks on Saturday to snap said streak. This rank is closer to their actual performance, as they rank 17th in expected goal differential and 13th in points percentage.

Another overtime-heavy stretch for the Leafs, with five of their past six games decided in extra time – including all three this week, two of which they won. They still have just five regulation wins to their name, tied for second-fewest and ahead of only the Montreal Canadiens.

The Leafs feel a bit stuck in the middle right now: fourth in the Atlantic, 17th in goal differential, 18th in expected goal differential, and 16th in the Power Ranking, down one place from last week.

It was an interesting week in the nation’s capital, to say the least.

It started with the 167 penalty minutes and 12 misconducts in the messy Tkachuk Bowl 5-0 loss. It ended on another shutout, this time a 2-0 win against Seattle. The Senators haven't won back-to-back games in North America since the middle of October, with their two wins in the Global Series being their only winning streak in over a month.

Ottawa ranks 24th in points percentage, but with just 19 games played, fewest in the NHL, there is a path to climbing the rankings. Sooner or later though, they will have to get the results in line with their 10th-ranked expected goal differential, or it will be another trip to the lottery in Ottawa.

Calgary might be the most accurately ranked team of the week: 21st in goal differential, 21st in expected goal differential, 22nd in points percentage, and 22nd in the NHL standings all add up for 21st place in the Power Rankings.

All three of Calgary’s games this week were decided by a single goal, two of them in extra time. They did notch two impressive wins against the Golden Knights and Stars in overtime, two top-10 teams in our rankings.

Finally, we once again have Montreal bringing up the rear for Canadian teams.

The Habs got more bad news this week, announcing that forward Alex Newhook will be out 10-12 weeks with a high ankle sprain. He joins an already long list of players forced to watch from the press box that includes Kirby Dach, David Savard, Rafaël Harvey-Pinard, Jordan Harris, Arber Xhekaj, and Chris Wideman.

This won’t do anything to help their 30th-ranked goal and expected goal differentials. Montreal plays their next five games at home before going on another long, seven-game road trip over the holidays.


NHL Power Rankings - Dec. 4

RK Team Last Week Record Avg. Goal Diff  xGoal Diff PT%
1 Los Angeles Kings 1 14-4-3 1.57 1.07 .738
2 New York Rangers 3 18-4-1 .87 .24 .804
3 Vegas Golden Knights 7 16-5-4 .84 .49 .720
4 Detroit Red Wings 8 8-6-3 .78 .24 .559
5 Vancouver Canucks 5 16-8-1 1.28 .32 .660
6 Carolina Hurricanes 10 14-8-1 .22 .87 .630
7 Boston Bruins 6 17-4-3 .88 .16 .771
8 Dallas Stars 12 14-5-3 .77 .16 .705
9 Colorado Avalanche 2 15-7-2 .67 .58 .667
10 Florida Panthers 9 11-5-1 .46 .69 .676
11 Pittsburgh Penguins 14 11-10-2 .52 .58 .522
12 Edmonton Oilers 18 9-12-1 -.27 .81 .432
13 Winnipeg Jets 4 13-8-2 .48 .13 .609
14 Nashville Predators 13 12-12-0 -.04 .16 .500
15 New Jersey Devils 21 11-10-1 -.14 .47 .523
16 Toronto Maple Leafs 15 12-6-4 .05 .09 .636
17 Arizona Coyotes 23 12-9-2 .26 -.30 .565
18 Philadelphia Flyers 11 12-10-2 .04 .23 .542
19 Ottawa Senators 17 9-10-0 0 .31 .474
20 St. Louis Blues 19 12-10-1 -.22 .05 .543
21 Calgary Flames 22 10-11-3 -.33 0 .479
22 Minnesota Wild 29 8-10-4 -.41 -.01 .455
23 New York Islanders 24 10-7-6 -.35 -1.01 .565
24 Washington Capitals 20 12-7-2 -.43 -.26 .619
25 Tampa Bay Lightning 16 10-10-5 -.40 .04 .500
26 Seattle Kraken 25 8-11-6 -.72 -.30 .440
27 Columbus Blue Jackets 27 8-14-4 -.50 -.72 .385
28 Montreal Canadiens 28 10-11-3 -.79 -.82 .479
29 Buffalo Sabres 26 10-13-2 -.56 -.63 .440
30 Anaheim Ducks 30 10-14-0 -.75 -.53 .417
31 Chicago Blackhawks 31 7-16-0 -1.26 -.76 .304
32 San Jose Sharks 32 6-17-2 -2.12 -1.92 .280