11.06.2011

NHL Top-10 Power Rankings, November 5th

Presenting the first Breakaway Goal NHL power rankings. Records are current as of the publication date; NHL games still in progress as of now are not counted. Enjoy!


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RANKTEAMRECORDNOTES
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1Washington9 – 3 – 0The Capitals are scary deep, and only lost on Saturday to the Isles due to lapses by the defense and goaltending – both of which have been great for most of the games so far. On offense, the Caps appear to have returned to their 2009-10 might, with all four lines contributing and stars Ovechkin & Backstrom starting to heat up.
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2Dallas9 – 3 – 0Hard to fault Dallas, who has been winning thanks to timely contributions by the offense and the absolutely lights-out play of Kari Lehtonen, who with 9 wins leads the NHL in that category. The trick will be keeping it up over the course of a season, but they're doing well for now.
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3Toronto9 – 4 – 1Lead by the strong offensive skills of Phil Kessel, the Maple Leafs have had an impressive and surprisingly consistent start to their season, and finally appear to be turning the corner from being a bottom dweller to being winners; getting James Reimer back from injury will help as well. However, the Bruins still have the Leafs' number, as the their 2 wins over Toronto by a combined 13-2 score will attest.
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4Chicago8 – 2 – 3Playing poor opponents and winning close games has been Chicago's formula, and while it hasn't been as noticeable as the play of the Caps or Stars, the Blackhawks are back, for now, to being one of the NHL's top teams after a mediocre post-championship season in 2010-11.
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5Pittsburgh8 – 3 – 3After losing superstars Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin last season, the Pens strung together enough hard fought wins in close games to comfortably make the playoffs. This season, Malkin is back, and the winning continues. Getting Crosby back will only help a Pens team that can be truly scary when they're on their game.
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6Edmonton8 – 2 – 2Nikolai Khabibulin has returned to form, and is backstopping this Edmonton to a surprising start that has them first in their division and aiming for first in the NHL. Meanwhile, the Oilers' young guns are keeping the scoring going, with 2011 first overall pick Ryan Nugent-Hopkins being particularly impressive. Can this team keep it up?
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7Philadelphia8 – 4 – 2After briefly getting "lost in the woods", the Flyers are back to their usual levels of play, most recently with a 9-2 drubbing of the hapless Blue Jackets. Their goaltending has been, for the most part, solid, and the offense is still what you'd expect from Philadelphia.
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8Minnesota7 – 3 – 3Currently riding the hot play of goalie Josh Harding, who missed all of last season with an injury, the Wild are climbing the standings. Their offense needs to be better, though with superstar goalie Niklas Backstrom sitting on the bench, that might not be too necessary.
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9Buffalo8 – 5 – 0Buffalo is winning, but UFA signing Ville Leino has been downright pitiful, and needs to pick up his game. Buffalo can keep winning, as long as their goalies keep up their usual high standard of play.
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10NY Rangers6 – 3 – 3After a 2-2-2 start to the season, the Rangers are starting to get on a roll, and they should have no problem continuing their recent winning ways; their strong offense is backstopped by Henrik Lundqvist, one of the best goalies in the world. The return of star defenseman Marc Staal would help, though.

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