There’s a tight race in the Pacific with five teams within two points of one another. Arizona isn’t far behind either with their games in hand. While the Pacific may not have one dominant team yet, it’s going to be an exciting race. Here’s this week’s Pacific Division Power Rankings!
1. San Jose Sharks (8-4-3, 2-1-0) Last Week: 1
The Sharks have been playing really good hockey of late, having just one regulation loss in their last nine games. San Jose has been led by Brent Burns as usual with 18 points in 15 games, but they’ve also gotten 11 goals from Timo Meier to start the year. Erik Karlsson still hasn’t totally taken off with just 7 assists in 15 games, but when he does, look out.
2. Calgary Flames (9-6-1, 2-1-0) Last Week: 3
The Flames had a four game winning streak and five game point streak snapped with their 3-2 loss to Anaheim on Wednesday. The Flames have been a team of third period comebacks this year, having already won five games that way, including three in their streak. While some of that can be put on goaltending, they’ll still have to find a way to limit their time trailing if they want to sustain success long term this year.
3. Vancouver Canucks (9-6-1, 2-0-1) Last Week: 5
The Canucks continue to get ridiculous production out of runaway Calder leader Elias Petterson. He has 10 goals in the 10 games he’s played for and has been a huge part of Vancouver’s unexpected surge into the early-season playoff conversation. Vancouver had a three game winning streak snapped on Tuesday against Detroit, but now carry a four game point streak.
4. Arizona Coyotes (7-6-0, 1-1-0) Last Week: 2
Arizona came back to Earth with a 5-2 loss against the Philadelphia Flyers which ended their five game winning streak. The Coyotes have received solid goaltending from Antti Raanta to begin their season, and are finally starting to find the back of the net. Arizona doesn’t have a dominant scoring leader yet with Clayton Keller having only 10 points in 13 games, but Alex Galchenyuk has 5 points in 6 games since his return from injury.
5. Edmonton Oilers (8-6-1, 2-2-0) Last Week: 4
The Oilers had won five of six prior to two back-to-back losses against Washington and Tampa Bay which is no easy competition by any means. How Edmonton responds to these losses will be very interesting to watch, as they take on Florida on Thursday. Edmonton is obviously being led by Connor McDavid with 22 points in 15 games, but Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Leon Draisaitl have also provided a nice offensive boost this year.
6. Anaheim Ducks (7-7-3, 2-1-1) Last Week: 7
Anaheim shrugged off a disheartening 4-1 loss to Los Angeles on Tuesday with a crucial 3-2 win over the (at the time) division leading Calgary Flames. Anaheim has still been heavily reliant on their goaltending to bail them out this year, which it has, but that strategy is quickly starting to show cracks.
7. Vegas Golden Knights (6-8-1, 1-2-0) Last Week: 6
Vegas had yet another opportunity to get back to .500 with a visit to Toronto on Tuesday, but were unable to pull out a W despite outshooting the Leafs. Vegas has yet to pull above .500 this season and a big reason for that is that they’re struggling to score goals. The Knights are dead last in the NHL averaging only 2.20 Goals For per game. Their powerplay is also tied for last at a paltry 11.8%.
8. Los Angeles Kings (5-8-1, 1-2-0) Last Week: 8
The Kings hit rock bottom this week and fired head coach John Stevens and replaced him with Willie Desjardins for the time being. The Kings have looked old and slow early this season and have really struggled to score goals as well. With Jonathan Quick out long term, there doesn’t seem to be any reprieve for the Kings, and it looks like this core is finally at its end.