Weekly NHL Power Rankings: Where things stand after NHL trade deadline
The Boston Bruins are not only still the team to beat they ended up getting even better on paper, while the Carolina Hurricanes and New Jersey Devils try to keep pace with them.
Now that the NHL Trade Deadline is over it is time to check back in with our weekly NHL Power Rankings, and there is not much change at the top with the Boston Bruins still owning the top spot. The past week was simply a case of the rich getting even richer as the NHL’s best team also added Dmitry Orlov and Tyler Bertuzzi to an already loaded lineup to keep them in the top spot.
The Carolina Hurricanes are still lurking around just behind them, and while their trade deadline performance was maybe not quite as impactful as we thought, Jesse Pulujarvi and Shayne Gostisbehere were still strong additions.
We take a look at all of those teams and more in this week’s rankings.
Where does your team sit entering the stretch run of the 2022-23 NHL season?
To this week’s NHL Power Rankings!
1. Boston Bruins. Orlov has already made a huge impact in his first handful of games, and I like rolling the dice on Bertuzzi as a rental. The other piece of news for Boston at the deadline was the brand new contract extension for David Pastrnak. Lot of solid business there by the Bruins.
2. Carolina Hurricanes. I expected Carolina to make a bigger blockbuster move at the deadline given their salary cap space and the absence of Max Pacioretty, but this is still a rock solid team from top to bottom. I just wonder if they will run into the same problem they seem to run into every postseason where the lack of top-tier finishers causes the offense to dry up at the wrong time.
3. New Jersey Devils. They got Timo Meier, another star still in the prime of his career that is still under team control for another full season, without giving up Dawson Mercer, Yegor Sharangovich, Luke Hughes, Simon Nemec, or Alexander Holtz. What a steal. This team has a chance to make some serious noise over the next two years.
4. Vegas Golden Knights. Not convinced Jonathan Quick is going to solve their goaltending questions, but they added some forward depth (Ivan Barbashev, Teddy Blueger) without having to give up anything. They are also really starting to click right now and emerging as a top contender in the Western Conference again.
5. Toronto Maple Leafs. You could sense the desperation for them to win at the trade deadline with all of those. When Ryan O’Reilly is healthy (he is out at least four weeks) they should have some outstanding center depth. Jake McCabe was a great addition on defense, but what does Luke Schenn do for them?
6. Tampa Bay Lightning. Still love their roster on paper and they should still be a factor in the playoffs — again — but they have been a mess for the past two weeks. We are all bored with their success, but are they also bored right now? They know they are in the playoffs, they know who they are playing. What is the motivation right now? Not saying they are taking their foot off the gas on purpose, but professional athletes are human as well. If any team can “flip the switch” it is this team.
7. Dallas Stars. Their top-end players are as good as anybody. They needed scoring depth. I like Max Domi and Evgenii Dadonov as players that can help fix that. The other big thing they need is for starting goalie Jake Oettinger to stay healthy. Different team without him in the lineup.
8. Los Angeles Kings. I love everything about them except for their goaltending, and I am still not sure if Joonas Korpisalo was enough of an upgrade. Also not sure what other options they had. At least they tried to address it.
9. Colorado Avalanche. When this team is healthy, which has not been the case at any point this season, the Western Conference is going to be in for a rude awakening. Lars Eller was not a blockbuster addition, but he is a nice player to add.
10. Minnesota Wild. They have two capable goalies (and Filip Gustavsson is very quietly outplaying Marc-Andre Fleury by a SIGNIFICANT margin — and one of the best top lines in hockey. They also made some intriguing pickups at the deadline despite having a complicated salary cap situation. Gustav Nyquist is the addition that could really make a big impact when he gets healthy. Real sleeper team in a wide open Western Confernce.
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