FOXSports.com NHL power rankings
JAN 28, 2013 9:27p ET
1. Blackhawks 6-0 -0 +3
Chicago is off to the best start in franchise history, and all but two of its six victories to open the season came against teams that made the playoffs a season ago. Goaltender Corey Crawford has been stellar so far, as has the 'Hawks penalty kill, which is 22 of 23 after a 2-1 OT win over Detroit on Sunday.
2. Blues 5-1 -0 -1
The Blues finally lost (a 3-2 decision to Chicago on Jan. 22), and Vladimir Tarasenko, the early favorite for Rookie of the Year, hasn’t matched his three-point night from the second game of the season. That doesn’t mean the Blues are any less formidable.
3. Sharks 5-0 -0 +8
Patrick Marleau is slumping. The second player to open the season with four multigoal games in a row had only one in a 4-1 win over Vancouver on Sunday. The Sharks’ biggest threats are in sync, and injured defenseman Brent Burns hasn’t even played a game.
4. Bruins 3-0 -1 -1
Timmy who? It could be too early to forget about holdout/hermit Tim Thomas in net, but Tuukka Rask has been a solid No. 1 so far, minus a 4-3 OT loss to the Rangers on Jan. 23.
5. Penguins 3-2 -0 -3
If there’s need for concern with the Pens, it’s their goal differential. They are currently plus-1 through the first five games. Also, losses to the Maple Leafs and Jets aren’t good for a team expected to make another Cup run.
6. Devils 3-0 -1 +15
It’s way too early to talk about a repeat trip to the Stanley Cup final. The Devils haven’t lost yet in regulation, but they’ve faced either non-contenders ( Canadiens and Islanders) or sputtering teams ( Flyers and Capitals).
7. Rangers 2-3 -0 11
Maybe the signing of free-agent forward Jason Arnott appeared to be a panic move (Arnott reportedly didn’t pass the physical, so the deal is off). The Rangers have only four points through five games, but even in a 48-game schedule, it’s early.
8. Senators 3-1 -1 +6
Goalie Craig Anderson has yet to allow more than a single goal in regulation. Both Anderson’s and the Sens’ lone defeat came via 2-1 OT loss to the Pens on Sunday. The Sens have Vezina candidate in Anderson and the most goals scored in the Northeast Division.
9. Kings 1-2 -1 -4
L.A. finally put one in the win column, a 4-2 decision against Phoenix on Saturday. It’s still way too early to worry, though, especially for a team that had to scramble late even to make the playoffs last year before winning it all.
10. Wild 2-2 -1 --
Zach Parise certainly has made an impact even though the Wild have dropped three straight games. The team’s other big free-agent pickup last summer, defenseman Ryan Suter? He’s been a minus in all but one game so far.
11. Lightning 4-1 -0 -2
Martin St. Louis was the third of the NHL’s “Three Stars” of the week. His eight assists tie him for second in the league to power a Lightning team with the most goals scored per game in the league (4.8).
12. Canucks 2-2 -1 -5
It will be hard to trade goalie Roberto Luongo when new No. 1 Cory Schneider follows a shutout (against the Ducks on Friday) with a middling performance (four goals on 27 shots against the Sharks on Sunday).
13. Red Wings 2-2 -1 +5
Guess what’s almost as tough as losing defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom to retirement? Playing in a much-improved Central Division that the Red Wings once dominated and in a lockout-shortened schedule.
14. Predators 1-2-3 -2
Maybe there’s a breakaway specialist lurking somewhere. The Preds have lost all three shootouts they’ve been involved in, which obscures the fact they are 26th in the league in scoring.
15. Ducks 3-1 -0 --
Rookie goalie Viktor Fasth, who earned a shutout in his first start Sunday, finally gives the team an option when Jonas Hiller goes down with an injury. That is usually just a matter of time, unfortunately.
16. Flyers 2-4 -0 -8
The Flyers righted themselves after an 0-3 start with two wins a row but then regressed in a major way. Michael Leighton -- not starter Ilya Bryzgalov -- was in net for the drubbing, at least.
17. Capitals 1-3 -1 -5
Alex Ovechkin finally scored his first goal of the year, which came in the Caps’ first win of the season against the Sabres on Sunday. Joel Ward is clutch, but he shouldn’t be your team leader in goals (three).
18. Sabres 2-3 -0 -4
Losers of three in a row, it’s hard not to want to rush veteran forward Thomas Vanek back from injury. This does give the team a chance to see what it has in Mikhail Grigorenko, the Sabres’ first-round selection in the 2012 entry draft.
19. Coyotes 2-4 -0 -6
Goalie Mike Smith struggled before he was forced out last week with a lower-body injury. He remains day-to-day. Whenever he returns, the Coyotes need to see a lot more out him and the team's defensive corps.
20. Stars 2-2 -1 +4
Dallas gets Jamie Benn back in the lineup this week after the forward came to terms on a five-year deal. Not a bad thing for a team tied for 19th in scoring (11 goals) this season.
21. Jets 3-1-1 +6
The Jets' recent three-game winning streak would put them in the postseason if the season ended Sunday. Let’s not put the Jets in the “pretender” category this early with their young talent, but give it a couple weeks.
22. Hurricanes 2-2 -0 -2
Defenseman Justin Falk begins the week sidelined with an upper-body injury. He was on the top defensive line with Tim Gleason. That’ll put more pressure on goalie Cam Ward, who has struggled.
23. Avalanche 2-2 -0 --
The Avs need to fix their special teams quick. They allowed three goals on six opportunities against the Sharks over the weekend, and their power play had one goal through their first 12 chances.
24. Canadiens 3-1 -0 +2
The Habs have fared fairly well minus defenseman PK Subban, who remains a holdout. Andrei Markov has provided enough offense from the blue line with four goals in three games, including the OT winner against the Devils on Sunday.
25. Maple Leafs 2-3 -0 +4
Toronto squandered leads in back-to-back losses and has yet to win a game at home. Looks like that’s more than enough to reignite the calls to trade forward Phil Kessel.
26. Islanders 2-2 -1 +4
Center John Tavares scored his first goal since March over the weekend. His line will have to become much more productive (offensively and defensively) for the Isles to remain competitive.
27. Flames 1-2 -1 -2
Maybe getting Czechs Jiri Hudler and Roman Cervenka into the lineup will turn things around. The Flames won their first game (beating the Oilers in OT) in that duo's debut.
28. Oilers 2-2 -0 -11
As veterans Ryan Smyth and Ryan Whitney (who combined have one point and are minus-3) struggle, maybe it’s time for all that talent the Oilers have stockpiled via the draft to step up.
29. Blue Jackets 1-3 -1 -1
The Jackets enter the week on a four-game skid, with the last three losses coming in regulation. A bright spot? At least one player ( RJ Umberger) has a positive plus-minus.
30. Panthers 1-4 -0 -11
Florida enters the week on a four-game losing streak. The Panthers were outscored 18-3 in that stretch. Hard to believe this team won the Southeast Division last season.