SB Nation's NHL Power Rankings, Week 9: Newcomers Abound In Top 10

After a week away from the No. 1 spot, the San Jose Sharks are back in their rightful place. The New Jersey Devils have also rebounded from a down week and are back in the top three. Yet the Blackhawks continue to be the NHL's best team over the past few weeks, and apparently losing just one game is enough for voters to knock them off the top.

Surprises of the week: Three newcomers this week, as Nashville, Atlanta and Boston find their way into the top ten.

PLEASE READ: Western Conference rankings are determined by votes from Western Conference bloggers, Eastern Conference bloggers for Eastern rankings. The Top 10 Power Rankings are determined by a separate vote of Western and Eastern Conference bloggers.

NHL Top Ten Power Rankings
Rank Last Wk Team Record Comments
1 2 San Jose Sharks 18-6-4 4-1-0 in their last five and have rebounded from their slight slump of a few weeks ago.
2 1 Chicago Blackhawks 16-6-3 At 8-1-1 in their past ten, the Hawks are still the NHL's hottest team.
3 6 New Jersey Devils 17-6-1 The winning streaks continue as the Devils have once again emerged as the league's best defensive team (2.13 goals allowed per game)
4 3 Washington Capitals 16-5-6 With another injury to Ovechkin, the Capitals will be put to the test once more.
5 4 Pittsburgh Penguins 19-9-0 Sidney Crosby (5G, 3A) led the Pens to straight wins over the Rangers.
6 5 Calgary Flames 17-6-3 The Flames ride a four-game winning streak to 2nd in the West.
7 8 Buffalo Sabres 15-7-2 The surprising Sabres get past a bump in the road and lead a tight race in the Northeast division.
8 - Nashville Predators 15-10-1 With a healthy lineup, good chemistry among the defense pairs, and a strong sophomore season in goal by Pekka Rinne, the Preds are pulling out close-fought games on a regular basis.
9 - Atlanta Thrashers 14-7-3 7-1-2 in their last ten? An NHL-best +24 goal differential? Yeah, the Thrashers are surprising.
10 - Boston Bruins 13-8-5 Still winning, with just one regulation loss in their past ten games.


Western Conference

Biggest Winner:  Nashville Predators (+5)

Biggest Loser: Detroit Red Wings (-4)

Western Conference Power Rankings
Rk (Prv) Team Record SB Nation Blog
1 (1) Chicago Blackhawks 16-6-3 Second City Hockey
2 (2) San Jose Sharks 18-6-4 Fear The Fin
3 (3) Calgary Flames 17-6-3 Matchsticks and Gasoline
4 (9) Nashville Predators 15-10-1 On the Forecheck
5 (8) Los Angeles Kings


Battle of California
6 (6) Dallas Stars 12-8-7 Defending Big D
7 (10) Phoenix Coyotes 15-11-1 Five For Howling
8 (4) Detroit Red Wings 13-9-4 Winging It In Motown
9 (7) Colorado Avalanche 15-8-5 Mile High Hockey
10 (11) Vancouver Canucks 14-12-0 Nucks Misconduct
11 (5) Columbus Blue Jackets 13-9-4 The Cannon
12 (12) St. Louis Blues 10-10-5 St. Louis Game Time
13 (15) Anaheim Ducks 10-11-4 Battle of California
14 (14) Minnesota Wild 10-12-3 Hockey Wilderness
15 (13) Edmonton Oilers 10-13-4 The Copper & Blue


Eastern Conference

Biggest Winner: Atlanta Thrashers (+4)

Biggest Loser: Philadelphia Flyers (-6)

Eastern Conference Power Rankings
Rk (Prv) Team Record SB Nation Blog
1 (4) New Jersey Devils 17-6-1 In Lou We Trust
2 (1) Washington Capitals 16-5-6 Japers' Rink
3 (2) Pittsburgh Penguins 19-9-0 PensBurgh
4 (7) Boston Bruins 13-8-5 Stanley Cup of Chowder
5 (9) Atlanta Thrashers 14-7-3 Bird Watchers Anonymous
6 (5) Buffalo Sabres 15-7-2 Die By The Blade
7 (6) Ottawa Senators 13-7-4 Silver Seven
8 (8) Tampa Bay Lightning 10-7-8 Raw Charge
9 (3) Philadelphia Flyers 13-10-1 Broad Street Hockey
10 (12) New York Islanders


Lighthouse Hockey
11 (10) New York Rangers 13-13-1 Blueshirt Banter
12 (11) Florida Panthers 10-12-4 Litter Box Cats
13 (13) Montreal Canadiens 12-12-2 Habs Eyes On The Prize
14 (15) Toronto Maple Leafs 6-12-7 Pension Plan Puppets
15 (14) Carolina Hurricanes 5-17-5 Canes Country
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