Power rankings are a weird balance, because you’re going off real results and deep-rooted opinions and feelings.

For example, I, as we all do, know in my heart that the Toronto Maple Leafs will do something really funny and their season will end in wild fashion.

But they’re also really good right now, so it is what it is. That is the balance of the power rankings — they aren’t the NHL standings, but they aren’t all about feelings, either.

If there were rankings based on feelings, the Vancouver Canucks would be at the top, because there are more feelings about and around them now than nearly anyone.

On to this week’s balanced rankings.

1. Florida Panthers

The change of scenery for Sam Bennett has been really good for him. Also Eetu Luostarinen is turning out to be pretty good.

2. Washington Capitals

Every time Alex Ovechkin scores it’s a story, as he gets closer to the record for power-play goals.


3. Edmonton Oilers

They have the best points percentage in the league and Connor McDavid. Their penalty kill is also dominant. Tough to find flaws.

4. Toronto Maple Leafs

They had won 15 of their past 17 games entering Friday. They are 100 percent going to blow it later on, but for now the Leafs look great.

5. Minnesota Wild

Is Ryan Hartman entering the Hart Trophy conversation? Every time I look up he’s dominating games.

6. Tampa Bay Lightning

Yeah, the Lightning are fine. Even without Nikita Kucherov. But we already knew that, didn’t we?

7. Calgary Flames

Maybe the Flames are entering their era after all. Rasmus Andersson is doing everything he can to enter the top-defensemen conversation.

8. Carolina Hurricanes

They lost to the Senators and have been on a bit of a slide since losing in Seattle last week.


9. Colorado Avalanche

Jonas Johansson’s performance against the Leafs was a vibe killer, but the Avalanche are still a force, and Nathan MacKinnon is back.

10. Pittsburgh Penguins

Some day the Penguins will be fully healthy, and it will be scary.

11. Boston Bruins

Jake DeBrusk requested a trade and then scored a goal. The Bruins are weird this season. Their goaltending hasn’t been good, and the vibes around the trade request have been odd.

12. New York Rangers

Will Igor Shesterkin be a legitimate Vezina Trophy contender? Sure feels like it right now.

13. St. Louis Blues

The Blues tried their darndest to be the first team to have an emergency backup goalie play this season. Also, Jordan Kyrou? Seems like he can play.

14. Anaheim Ducks

Are we in a Sonny Milano era? Kind of feels like we’re in a Sonny Milano era. At least he and Trevor Zegras really work together.


15. Nashville Predators

Released the worst jersey in the NHL this season.

16. Dallas Stars

This week the Stars became the first NHL team to score before the game’s first 75 seconds in four consecutive games. Weird stat, but the Stars might be good again.

17. Vegas Golden Knights

The vibes are still off. It felt like the Knights were about to go on a run and be the Knights again, but then they lost two in a row.

18. Detroit Red Wings

There are some elements to Detroit’s game that are … fun? Lucas Raymond is a genuine pleasure to watch.

19. Winnipeg Jets

The Jets played officially the weirdest game of the season when they outshot the Coyotes 46-15 and lost. So congrats to them.

20. New Jersey Devils

Did not release the worst jersey in the NHL this season.

21. Columbus Blue Jackets

The Blue Jackets allow 34.5 shots per game, third-most in the league. Not giving themselves much of a chance right now.


22. Los Angeles Kings

The Kings’ penalty kill at 74.6 percent is pretty brutal. Just kind of a meh team right now.

23. Seattle Kraken

The injury bug hit when it was starting to look like the Kraken could climb back into contention.

24. San Jose Sharks

Erik Karlsson decided to be a version of Good Erik Karlsson again, and it has made all the difference in the world.

25. Philadelphia Flyers

The annual falling of the Philadelphia Flyers is here.

26. Chicago Blackhawks

Maybe Derek King did save their season? At least they’ve been competitive with seven wins in their past 10 games, and Marc-Andre Fleury has been better.

27. New York Islanders

I just feel bad. They had to be on the road forever and now have a new arena. Then COVID-19 decimated them, and the league wouldn’t postpone games until it had already spread a bunch.

28. Buffalo Sabres

Who would have known an Aaron Dell and Dustin Tokarski duo might not be so great in net?


29. Vancouver Canucks

They beat Ottawa and Montreal in back-to-back games to save their season, I guess? Good timing with the schedule.

30. Ottawa Senators

The Senators beat the Hurricanes and got demolished by the Canucks in the same week, and that’s Senators hockey, baby.

31. Montreal Canadiens

The Habs finally cleaned house in the front office, so we’ll see if that gives them a spark.

32. Arizona Coyotes

They’re 4-3-1 in their past eight games, so maybe this is unfair. But they are so far out of contention and have drama with their arena.