The Western Conference leading Blues are 10-2-1 in their last 13 games. They hold a six point lead over Vancouver for the top spot in the Western Conference and a five point cushion in the race for the President’s trophy.
The Flyers are 8-1-1 in their last 10 after erasing a two goal deficit and ending the Penguins 11 game winning streak Sunday. Ilya Bryzgalov was once again terrific shutting down Crosby and company. If he can keep his confidence this high down the stretch and into the playoffs, the Flyers will be the team to beat in the Eastern Conference.
The Penguins have been red hot but giving up 2 un-answered goals in Philly and losing in overtime keeps them below the Blues and Flyers. With a healthy Crosby and Letang the Penguins will be a lethal team in the Eastern Conference, especially in the playoffs. Expect them to battle it out for the top spot in the Atlantic Division with the Flyers.
The Canucks 4-3 win over Columbus Saturday was just their second in six games. They looked like a team with little left to play for before the playoffs. And with the Blues atop the Western Conference and the Canucks monster lead in the Northwest, there really is not much left for the Canucks to play for in the regular season.
Finally the Rangers are finding themselves at the bottom of our top 5 Power Rankings list, after leading the pack for the past 8+ weeks. The offense has dried up a bit and are 2-5-0 in their last seven, when they have scored just 16 goals during that span. They have a tough week ahead of them, play New Jersey, Detroit and Buffalo.
Nashville Predators (42-22-8)
The Preds had lost two in a row on the West Coast before their come from behind victory over Anaheim on Sunday, which lifted them into a tie with the Red Wings for the fourth seed and home ice advantage in the first round. Both teams have 10 games remaining, and the Preds own the tiebreaker with more regulation and overtime wins.
Chicago Blackhawks (40-25-8)
Chicago dominated Washington in a 5-2 home win Sunday night for its third win in a row. Patrick Kane and Marian Hossa are picking up the slack in Jonathan Toews’ absence. Corey Crawford appears to have reassumed the starting job with his strong play. Tough game this week against Vancouver.
Detroit Red Wings (44-24-4)
The Wings’ road woes continue as they were beaten in San Jose in OT Saturday. They are 16-20-2 away from Joe Louis Arena and 1-5-1 in their past seven overall. Getting healhthy in time for the playoffs will keep the Wings alive this post season. If not, they wont survive the first round of the playoffs.
New Jersey Devils (41-26-5)
The Devils were spanked 5-2 by Pittsburgh at home Saturday but have still won five of seven. Ilya Kovalchuk has surged to sixth in points in what might be his best all around season.
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