[SPORTS] NHL Power Rankings – October 20th, 2010.

DJ on ICE: Hockey coverage with DJ Sullivan

Team TW LW Record
Washington Capitals 1 4-1-0 After an opening game loss to Atlanta, the Caps have ripped off 4 straight including a 7 goal performance against the Devils.  Alex Ovechkin learned how to share over the summer.  He has 4 assists to go along with 4 goals jumpers for sale.
Toronto Maple Leafs 2 4-0-1 The Leafs are off to a 4-0-1 start.  Clarke MacArthur is enjoying a change of scenery in Toronto.  Phil Kessel is enjoying having another scorer on the team.  Kessel and MacArthur have 5 goals apiece.
Nashville Predators 3 3-0-1 One of 2 teams to remain unbeaten in regulation.  Have been relying on rookie netminder Anders Lindback.  Tough tests ahead in the form of Pittsburgh, Dallas, & Detroit.
Chicago Blackhawks 4 4-2-1 Looks like they kept the right pieces.  Marian Hossa has 7 goals in as many games.  Even with all the player losses the Hawks remain one of the league’s most talented teams.  Only losses have come to Detroit (3-2) and Nashville in OT.
Dallas Stars 5 4-1-0 Two of their wins have come via shootout.  The Stars suffered their first loss 5-4 to Tampa Bay on Monday.  Brad Richards has an astonishing 8 assists while Brenden Morrow has 5 tallies for Dallas.
Detroit Red Wings 6 3-1-1 Detroit is the Pittsburgh Steelers of the NHL.  They’re decent even when missing a piece, and scary good when firing on all cylinders.  Injuries to Johan Franzen (concussion) and Brian Rafalski (knee) haven’t slowed down this machine of a team.  Sophomore G Jimmy Howard has a 1.59 GAA.
Los Angeles Kings 7 3-1-0 Two wins against Vancouver have served notice to the league that this isn’t the same old Kings.  These  Kings have a nice mix of physical play (Dustin Brown, Ryan Smyth), playmaking (Kopitar) and defense (Jack Johnson, Drew Doughty)
Montreal Canadiens 8 3-1-1 The Habs have done well against the bottom half of the league.  And they look to continue to do so with upcoming games against NJ, PHX, OTT, & NYI.  Carey Price is under heavy scrutiny in MTL since the Habs shipped out Jaroslav Halak.  He’s in a win-win situation…He had better keep winning or it will get ugly in Montreal.
Vancouver Canucks 9 2-2-1 High expectations haven’t led to wins as the Canucks dropped two to the Kings.  Roberto Luongo needs to return to world class form if the Canucks are to compete for The Cup.  The Sedins are in good form; each has 7 points.
Pittsburgh Penguins 10 4-3-0 Paul Martin, Alex Goligoski, and Mark Letestu are all scoring goals.  Now if the Pens can just get Marc-Andre Fleury to stop some goals.  Oh yeah, they have those Malkin and Crosby guys too.
Florida Panthers 11 2-2-0 Tomas Vokoun has two shutouts in 4 games.  Games that the Panthers won 3-0 and 6-0.  Two one goal road losses are keeping the Panthers from moving up… for now.  David ‘John-Wilkes’ Booth and Rostislav Olesz lead the offensive charge with 5 points each.
New York Rangers 12 1-2-1 Rookie Derek Stepan has been a pleasant surprise, scoring a hat trick in his first NHL game.  Marian Gaborik’s dislocated shoulder will set the Rangers back.  Players like Ryan Callahan & Alex Frolov will have to step up to keep the Rangers from slipping while Gaborik heals.
New York Islanders 13 3-1-2 John Tavares sent the Leafs to their first loss of the season.  Other than Dough Weight and Rick DiPietro, the roster is a bunch of no-names.  Kyle Oksopo who is injured (shoulder) and John Tavares could soon be household names on an improving Isles team.
Boston Bruins 14 2-1-0 It’s good to have two good goalies.  Tuukka Rask was pulled in favor of Tim Thomas, who has shined in net.  The Bruins have 2 games vs. The Caps that will serve to show where this team really stands.
St. Louis Blues 15 2-1-2 The Blues are happy to have Jaroslav Halak in net.  OT loss to Chicago Monday night.  St. Louis has potential, but still has to overcome Chicago, Nashville, and Detroit in perhaps the NHL’s best division.
Edmonton Oilers 16 2-2-0 Edmonton was picked last and they haven’t been terrible.  The ‘Bulin Wall’ has backstopped the young squad to a better than expected start.  Jordan Eberle stole the fire from fellow rookie Taylor hall with a highlight reel goal vs. Calgary on opening night.
Colorado Avalanche 17 4-2-0 John Michael Liles is an assist machine (8).  RW Chris Stewart has 5 goals and Paul Stastny has 7 points (2+5).  Other than that this team is average.
San Jose Sharks 18 1-1-1 I’ve got a feeling the Sharks won’t be down here long.  The Sharks must prove they have AN answer in net; in either Antero Nittymaki or Antti Niemi.  Ryan Clowe, Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, and Dany Heatley lead a powerful offense.
Tampa Bay Lightning 19 4-1-0 Good teams don’t lose 6-0 to the Florida Panthers.  However they have won all their other games.  Vinny Lecavalier is hurt.  Steven Stamkos, As. Louis and Co. must keep winning to earn their way up the rankings.
Atlanta Thrashers 20 3-2-0 Atlanta lost Ilya Kovalchuk and gained a bunch of new players.  They’re most famous for having a fainting goalie.
Minnesota Wild 21 1-2-1 Minnesota is blessed with 3 solid Centremen (Koivu, Cullen, Madden).  The Wild have potential to be good, but probably not great.
Phoenix Coyotes 22 1-2-1 The Coyotes have the best Polish player in the NHL, Wotjek Wolski.  And not much else.  Shane Doan is serving a 3 game suspension.  Ilya Bryzgalov must stay strong for the Coyotes to repeat last year’s success.
Anaheim Ducks 23 2-3-1 The Ducks have gotten gradually worse since their Stanley Cup win in ‘07.  With defensive acquisitions Toni Lydman, Andy Sutton, Paul Mara, and Andreas Lilja the Ducks hope to shore up a shaky defense to go along with a good offense.
Columbus Blue Jackets 24 2-2-0 Kristian Huselius and RJ Umberger (3 goals each) look to compliment Rick Nash and bring the Blue Jackets out of obscurity.
Carolina Hurricanes 25 2-2-0 Too bad the Canes can’t play all their games in Finland.  0-2 in North America this season.  Other than Eric Staal the Canes are supremely average in all areas.
Calgary Flames 26 2-2-0 Where’s the fire?  Olli Jokkinen has no goals and leader Jarome Iginla has only one.  With Mikka Kiprusoff in net and the talent on this roster this team should be in the playoffs.
Philadelphia Flyers 27 2-2-1 Tough to win without a legitimate goaltender.  Rookie G Sergei Bobrovsky is doing his best without a healthy Chris Pronger (knee).  Danny Briere has 4 goals for the Flyers.
Buffalo Sabres 28 1-4-1 After a promising opening night victory against Ottawa the Sabres have struggled.  Ryan Miller is still stopping pucks, but so are opposing netminders.  Thomas Vanek has no goals, Jason Pominville is injured and Sophomore D-Man Tyler Myers is slumping.
New Jersey Devils 29 1-4-1 The Devils had to play several games with 3 fewer men on their roster due to injuries (Brian Rolston, Anton Volchenkov) and salary cap issues.  Brodeur’s #’s look sub-par, 3.18 GAA, .887 SV%.  The Devils only victory came against Buffalo, who also stinks.
Ottawa Senators 30 1-4-1 Sergei Gonchar hasn’t been the answer the Sens were looking for and Alex Kovalev has yet to score in 6 games.  Toss in an injury to G Pascal Leclaire and you’ve got the worst team in the league.

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