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Power Rankings: Capitals emerging into a class by themselves

The Capitals haven't lost at home yet in 2017 and are on pace to win their second consecutive Presidents' Trophy, not that that's necessarily a good thing.

If the Washington Capitals keep up their current pace, they’ll win their second straight Presidents’ Trophy, which could pose the ultimate good news-bad news scenario for them.

On the one hand, the Capitals having home ice advantage through the playoffs would not be good news for their opponents. Not only do the Capitals have back-to-back shutouts at the Verizon Center, they have not lost at home yet in 2017 and have outscored their opponents 50-12 in 10 games.

On the other hand, the playoff success of the Presidents’ Trophy winners has not been great, something the Capitals know all to well. They’ve won the trophy twice and have one series victory to show for it.

Nonetheless, the Capitals are emerging into a class by themselves. And it should come as no surprise that they top’s weekly Power Rankings. (Last week’s rankings in parentheses.):


1. Washington Capitals (3)

2. Minnesota Wild (1)

3. Pittsburgh Penguins (3)

4. San Jose Sharks (2)

5. New York Rangers (14)

6. Chicago Blackhawks (20)

7. Columbus Blue Jackets (10)

8. New York Islanders (7)

9. Florida Panthers (12)

10. St. Louis Blues (24)

The Capitals have won 10 straight at home and, get this, have scored at least five goals in each of the past nine games at the Verizon Center…Charlie Coyle played center for the first time this season and he had three assists in a 4-2 win over Winnipeg Tuesday night…The Penguins are 7-11-2 when trailing after two periods. That’s the best record in the NHL…Sharks’ coach Peter DeBoer after his team blew a three-goal lead in the third period in a 5-4 overtime loss to Buffalo Tuesday: “I felt like Dan Quinn on Super Bowl Sunday.”…Henrik Lundqvist has played his way out of a slump. He’s won his past three and stopped a season-high 43 shots in a 4-1 over Anaheim Tuesday…Patrick Kane said Wednesday’s game against Minnesota is, “our biggest of the year.”…Seth Jones’ game-winner in the Blue Jackets 3-2 win over Detroit Tuesday night was his third overtime goal of the season…The Islanders stopped a streak of six straight extra-time losses when they beat Toronto 6-5 in overtime Monday night…The Panthers headed into their bye week with a healthy Jonathan Huberdeau and points in each of their past four games…Ken Hitchcock must be wondering where this was a week ago. In four games under Mike Yeo, the Blues have won three and registered back-to-back shutouts.


11. Edmonton Oilers (8)

12. New Jersey Devils (19)

13. Nashville Predators (17)

14. Anaheim Ducks (6)

15. Toronto Maple Leafs (22)

16. Montreal Canadiens (5)

17. Calgary Flames (23)

18. Carolina Hurricanes (18)

19. Tampa Bay Lightning (27)

20. Ottawa Senators (13)

Does anyone truly expect Jordan Eberle to be an Edmonton Oiler next season?…In his past nine games, Devils’ rookie Pavel Zacha has four goals and seven points. That’s as many points as he had in his first 37 games…Vern Fiddler was traded to the Predators from New Jersey last week and made his season debut for Nashville Tuesday night. It’s his second tour of duty with Nashville, but with a name like that, he should have never, ever left…Something that needs to be asked: What is wrong with Corey Perry?…Something that needs to be said: Since December, the Canadiens have been an average team that has been getting average goaltending…The Flames should feel good about themselves entering the NHL-mandated furlough. They’ve won three of their past four games…In Carolina’s 5-0 loss to Washington Tuesday night, Hurricanes goalie Eddie Lack allowed five goals on 28 shots in his first game back in three months after suffering a concussion…With a 5-0 win over Los Angeles Tuesday night, the Lightning won consecutive games for the first time since before Christmas…So much for coach Guy Boucher tightening things up in Ottawa. In the Senators past three losses, they’ve given up 16 goals. To make matters worse, they’ve been shut out twice in a row…In his past 19 games, Flyers’ captain Claude Giroux has two goals and is minus-15.


21. Philadelphia Flyers (21)

22. Colorado Avalanche (30)

23. Buffalo Sabres (28)

24. Los Angeles Kings (11)

25. Boston Bruins (9)

26. Detroit Red Wings (26)

27. Arizona Coyotes (29)

28. Winnipeg Jets (16)

29. Dallas Stars (15)

30. Vancouver Canucks (25)

In his past 19 games, Flyers’ captain Claude Giroux has two goals and is minus-15…Celebrate the Avalanche being ranked 22nd. They’ve won two in a row for the first time since November and will probably never be this high again this season…The much-maligned Evander Kane has four goals and nine points in his last seven games, including the overtime winner over San Jose Tuesday night…Kings goalie Peter Budaj was named third star of the week, then promptly gave up four goals on 15 shots in a 5-0 loss to Tampa Bay Tuesday night…Bruce Cassidy will make his season debut behind the bench for the Bruins Thursday night, more than 13 years after he last was a head coach in the NHL…The Red Wings were incensed that Brandon Dubinsky didn’t get a slashing penalty in overtime of their 3-2 loss to Columbus Tuesday night…If only every game could to a shootout for the Coyotes. Their 3-2 win over San Jose on the weekend was their fifth in the skills competition this season. They have only one shootout loss…Jets defenseman Tyler Myers is out six-to-eight weeks after surgery on a lower-body injury…Stars coach Lindy Ruff is in the last year of his deal and could be another good coach out of a job if they fail to make the playoffs…Sven Baertschi was lost to a concussion less than two minutes into the Canucks’ 4-2 loss to Nashville Tuesday night on a headshot by Cody McLeod. Interesting that the Canucks labeled it a concussion right away instead of an upper-body injury.



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