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NHL Power Rankings: Maple Leafs take top spot

Profile Picture: Robert Criscola

January 29th, 2021

We’re just over two weeks into the 2021 NHL season, but some of the true Stanley Cup contenders have already begun to separate themselves from the pack.

Let’s count down the Top 10 teams in hockey.

1. Toronto Maple Leafs

Whether the Canadian division is soft, or if things are just coming together for the Maple Leafs, Toronto is more than deserving of the No. 1 spot on this list. They’ve won seven of their first nine games.

Mitchell Marner is off to an incredible start, as he’s one off the league lead in points held by Connor McDavid (14).

2. Vegas Golden Knights

Max Pacioretty and his club are off to a hot start – he has a league-leading six goals while his team has gone 5-1-1 out of the gate – but COVID-19 issues have the Golden Knights’ season on pause.

Free agent pickup Alex Pietrangelo would have missed Thursday’s “revenge game” against the Blues regardless, as he was recently added to the COVID list.

3. Boston Bruins

A 1-1-1 beginning was a bit troubling for the Bruins, but they’ve won four straight since, over quality teams in the Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins.

Brad Marchand leads the club with 10 points.

4. Tampa Bay Lightning

The Lightning slide into this power ranking on a two-game losing streak and a five-period (plus partial overtime) scoreless streak, but that only slightly diminishes the defending champs’ 3-0-0 start.

Steven Stamkos has six points in five games.

5. Dallas Stars

The start of their season was delayed due to a COVID outbreak, but the defending Western Conference champion Stars have won their first four games and have an NHL-leading plus-13 goal differential.

Anton Khudobin has been incredible between the pipes, producing a 0.99 GAA and a .958 save percentage.

6. Montreal Canadiens

Perhaps the most pleasant surprise of the season thus far, the Canadiens are 5-0-2 through seven games.

Free agent acquisition Tyler Toffoli has been even better than advertised, amassing six goals in that span.

7. Washington Capitals

The Capitals have shown up every night this season, going 5-0-3 through their first eight games.

Their most recent effort against the New York Islanders on Thursday night turned heads, as Washington dug themselves out of an early 3-0 hole by scoring five times in the second period en route to a 6-3 triumph.

8. Winnipeg Jets

The Jets have been winning on the ice (5-2-0) and in the trade market this year, as they finally relived themselves of their Patrik Laine headache when they swapped with the Columbus Blue Jackets for Pierre-Luc Dubois.

Winnipeg is hopeful Dubois will make his debut on Sunday.

9. St. Louis Blues

It’s a little early to draw significant conclusions from the Blues’ 4-2-1 start, but St. Louis fans have to be happy with the production from 22-year-old center Jordan Kyrou, who’s averaging a point per game.

10. Colorado Avalanche

A 3-3 start wasn’t exactly inspiring for the Avalanche, picked by many as the 2021 Stanley Cup Champions. But a two-game sweep of the San Jose Sharks (10-3 aggregate score) had to be a confidence-booster for this club.

Mikko Rantanen is part of a crowded co-league lead with six goals to his credit.

Bubble Teams: Florida Panthers, Philadelphia Flyers

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