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Power Rankings: Bruins powered to top spot by NHL’s most dominant line

The Bruins take top spot this week as their point streak continues, but no team has made a bigger leap up the Power Rankings than the Flyers.

About the only thing that might be able to stop the Boston Bruins and their top line these days is Brad Marchand’s flying elbow. The Bruins have gone 17 games in a row in which they’ve earned at least a point and their top unit of Patrice Bergeron between Marchand and David Pastrnak is easily the NHL’s most dominant line on both sides of the puck.

But that could all come to a temporary halt if Marchand is suspended for his flying elbow to the head of New Jersey Devils winger Marcus Johansson Wednesday night. There was no penalty called on the play, which should come as no surprise because Marchand is sneaky about these things. But there’s nothing sneaky about the Bruins, who have been the league’s most dominant team in 2018 and, as a result, make their debut this season in the No. 1 spot in thn.com’s weekly Power Rankings. (Last week’s rankings in parentheses.):

THE CREAM OF THE CROP
1. Boston Bruins (5)
2. Vegas Golden Knights (8)
3. Tampa Bay Lightning (6)
4. Nashville Predators (1)
5. Winnipeg Jets (11)
6. Philadelphia Flyers (20)
7. Dallas Stars (10)
8. Calgary Flames (2)
9. St. Louis Blues (12)
10. Colorado Avalanche (3)

Bergeron has 6-10-16 totals in his past 10 games…If you’ve been waiting for Vegas to fall off a cliff, you should really stop doing that…Yanni Gourde, the rookie nobody talks about, is tied for second in goals among first-year players…The Predators have lost only once in regulation time so far in 2018…After back-to-back seasons of 78 and 74 points, Blake Wheeler is on pace for 90 this season for the Jets…Travis Konecny has 11 points in his past 13 games and back-to-back overtime game-winners for the Flyers…Yeah, they were against Buffalo and Florida, but the Stars have outscored their opponents 13-2 in their past two games…After missing six weeks with a broken foot, Jaden Schwartz could be back in the Blues lineup tomorrow night…Flames goalie Mike Smith has a 6-0-2 record with a 1.83 goals-against average and .945 save percentage since New Year’s Eve…The Avs’ 10-game winning streak was the second-longest in franchise history.

THE MUSHY MIDDLE
11. Minnesota Wild (14)
12. San Jose Sharks (9)
13. Washington Capitals (7)
14. Pittsburgh Penguins (4)
15. Anaheim Ducks (21)
16. Toronto Maple Leafs (16)
17. New York Islanders (23)
18. Columbus Blue Jackets (17)
19. New Jersey Devils (13)
20. Arizona Coyotes (31)

After registering just one assist in seven games after returning from back surgery, Zach Parise has goals in back-to-back games for the Wild…That Joe Thornton is out for “several weeks” with a knee injury is a huge blow to the Sharks’ playoff hopes. He’s been their best player of late…What’s wrong with Evgeny Kuznetsov of the Capitals? He has four goals in his past 20 games…Sidney Crosby’s next point will be his 1,080th and will put him alone at No. 2 on the Penguins’ all-time scoring list. Will he ever catch Mario Lemieux at 1,723?…Corey Perry scored his first non-empty net goal in the Ducks 6-3 win over the Rangers Tuesday night. It was his eighth of the year and he needs two more to match the total in millions of dollars he will be paid this season…Stubborn Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock has finally moved Leo Komarov to the fourth line, but says his stay there will be temporary…Teams that finish last in goals-against average, which is where the Islanders are now, rarely make the playoffs…The Blue Jackets were in Vegas for four days before losing 6-3 to the Golden Knights Wednesday night. They also sent Brandon Dubinsky home under mysterious circumstances. This doesn’t sound good. Stay tuned…Still no word on whether or not Taylor Hall will play in the Devils game tomorrow night against Nashville, and subsequently, the All-Star Game. He’s missed the past two with a hand injury…The Coyotes deserve to be in this spot. They’ve earned at least a point if five straight games and are 3-1-4 so far in 2018.

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VYING FOR THE PARTICIPATION BADGE
21. Buffalo Sabres (30)
22. Detroit Red Wings (29)
23. Los Angeles Kings (19)
24. Montreal Canadiens (24)
25. Vancouver Canucks (27)
26. New York Rangers (15)
27. Chicago Blackhawks (22)
28. Florida Panthers (25)
29. Carolina Hurricanes (28)
30. Edmonton Oilers (19)
31. Ottawa Senators (26)

The Oilers were putrid, but the Sabres played well enough to beat a lot of teams in this league in their 5-0 win in Edmonton Wednesday night. Jack Eichel has 5-9-14 totals in his past seven games…When the Red Wings don’t make the playoff this year, they can look at the number of points they left on the table. They’re 1-7 in 3-on-3 overtime this season. Oddly enough, they’re 3-1 in shootouts…That sound you hear is the once-promising Los Angeles Kings’ season circling down the drain…So Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin is apparently going to be active at the deadline? So how do you deal with that proposition as a Canadiens fan, with anticipation or dread?…Canucks rookie Brock Boeser had two goals, six shots and 10 shot attempts in the Canucks 6-2 win over the Kings Wednesday night…In the Rangers 6-3 loss to Anaheim Wednesday night, Henrik Lundqvist allowed a goal on the first shot of the game for the sixth time this season…Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville on his team’s fading playoff prospects: “That hole’s getting deeper.”…Goalie James Reimer left the Panthers 6-1 loss to Dallas Wednesday night after kicking out his leg on a play that looked eerily similar to the one that put Roberto Luongo on the shelf…Scott Darling was not supposed to give way to Cam Ward in the Hurricanes’ net down the stretch. That’s not what the Hurricanes had in mind when they used a third-round pick to get Darling, then signed him to a four-year deal worth $16.6 million…Oilers coach Todd McLellan, whose team gave up three power-play goals in its 5-0 loss to Buffalo Wednesday night, called his team’s penalty killing, “horrendous.”…The Senators were shut out for the eighth time this season in their 3-0 loss in St. Louis Wednesday night.

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