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Thursday, June 6, 2024

NHL Energy Rankings: Kings emerge as severe Stanley Cup contenders in Western Convention

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The Bruins made NHL historical past on Saturday by reaching 50 wins quicker than some other workforce in league historical past. Some will say this preposterous common season will solely put extra stress on Boston within the first spherical of the playoffs, however there will probably be loads of time to consider that when the postseason arrives. For now, followers simply must get pleasure from this historic journey. — 58-12-5

Dougie Hamilton obtained some criticism for a down 12 months in 2021-22, however he has bounced again with a vengeance this season. Hamilton has tied his profession excessive in objectives (18) and set new profession highs in assists (45) and factors (63). He is finished all of that whereas posting a plus-24 aim differential at five-on-five, per Pure Stat Trick. 1 47-20-8

Carolina can not seem to catch a break in its pursuit of a Stanley Cup. After dropping Max Pacioretty to an Achilles damage earlier within the season, star ahead Andrei Svechnikov has suffered a season-ending knee damage. The Hurricanes will nonetheless be a formidable playoff opponent, but it surely’ll be very tough to interchange Svechnikov’s offensive manufacturing. 1 47-18-9

It’s an extremely small pattern measurement, however the Kings’ goaltending has been notably improved in March. By 5 video games, Joonas Korpisalo and Pheonix Copley have mixed for 4.79 objectives saved above common. That’s an encouraging signal, and if this Kings workforce will get dependable goaltending within the playoffs, it might win the Western Convention. 3 43-22-10

With Kirill Kaprizov out for 3 to 4 weeks with a lower-body damage, the Wild offense will get a significant take a look at. Even with Kaprizov within the lineup, the Minnesota offense was struggling to attain objectives. The remainder of the lineup should choose up the slack now that Kaprizov and his 39 objectives are on the shelf for the quick future. 1 44-22-9

On Thursday evening, 9 totally different Stars scored as they hung a 10-spot on the Sabres. Lately, Dallas has been criticized for an absence of offensive depth, however these considerations will in all probability vanish if the workforce retains posting double-digit scores. 4 41-20-14

Maple Leafs
With a aim in every of his final two video games, William Nylander now has 35 on the season, which is a brand new profession excessive. Nylander is taking part in at an elite degree, and he is among the most enjoyable gamers to observe within the NHL as a result of it is by no means boring when he is on the ice. As a lot as Nylander creates on offense, he may give a little bit bit again on the defensive finish, which is an thrilling combo. 1 44-20-10

Golden Knights
Jonathan Fast recorded a shutout of the Hurricanes in his third begin with the Golden Knights, stopping all 33 photographs he confronted. Fast is off to a 4-0 begin in Vegas, and he has helped them win a few video games wherein the workforce received outplayed. It’s going to be attention-grabbing if he retains this up lengthy sufficient to get playoff revenge in opposition to the Kings. 3 46-22-7

The Avalanche’s coaching room is beginning to attain capability. Ahead Artturi Lehkonen broke his thumb in Monday evening’s win over the Canadiens, and he’ll miss 4 to 6 weeks. Colorado has had unbelievably poor damage luck this season, and but the workforce continues to be able to incomes home-ice benefit within the first spherical of the playoffs. — 44-24-6

The early returns on Mattias Ekholm have been distinctive. Ekholm has solely performed seven video games in an Oilers uniform, however the workforce has a plus-9 aim differential and a 59.51% anticipated objectives share when he’s on the ice at five-on-five. Edmonton is way more imposing with Ekholm because the No. 1 defenseman. 1 44-23-9

The Rangers’ five-on-five recreation has been lagging of late, and that has led to some subpar outcomes on the scoreboard. During the last month, the Rangers rank twentieth in five-on-five anticipated objectives share (47.26%). That kind of quantity labored final season when Igor Shesterkin was having an out-of-body expertise, however that hasn’t all the time been the case this 12 months. 3 44-21-11

One of many important the explanation why the Panthers have been capable of climb the Jap Convention standings is that Aleksander Barkov has began to warmth up once more. Barkov has six factors in his final 4 video games, and he must preserve that up if Florida goes to get above the road by the point the common season ends. 3 38-31-7

Seattle has misplaced three straight video games, and it’s now only one level forward of the Oilers within the Pacific Division standings. To make issues worse, the Kraken’s lack of goaltending is rearing its head as soon as once more. Within the final month, Martin Jones and Philipp Grubauer have mixed to permit 6.54 objectives above common, per Pure Stat Trick. 1 41-25-8

After getting off to a powerful begin with the Islanders, Bo Horvat has cooled off a little bit bit. Horvat has only one help in his final six video games, and that’s unhealthy information for an Isles workforce that’s nonetheless preventing for its playoff life. Ilya Sorokin is greater than ok to make up for some offensive shortcomings, however Horvat has to get going once more rapidly. 2 39-28-9

Andrei Vasilevskiy has not been himself these days. Since Feb. 12, Vasilevskiy has made 11 begins, and his -1.19 objectives saved above common rank forty seventh in that span. That explains a few of Tampa’s current struggles, and it is arduous to see them getting far within the Jap Convention playoffs with out Vasilevskiy being on prime of his recreation. 1 44-26-6

Few groups had a greater weekend than the Jets. On Saturday, they triggered some hypertension in Winnipeg however pulled out an time beyond regulation win over the Panthers. On Sunday, the Jets went into Tampa Bay and defeated the Lightning in regulation. Winnipeg wanted to cease the bleeding, and it did precisely that. 2 42-31-3

Evgeni Malkin has been completely dishing these days with 9 assists in his final six video games. Malkin now has 70 factors in 66 video games, and he’s a lot nearer to peak efficiency than he was over the earlier two seasons. Pittsburgh will all the time have a shot when Malkin and Sidney Crosby are firing on all cylinders. 2 37-28-10

Alex Tuch returned to the Sabres’ lineup simply in time. On Monday, Tuch suited up for the primary time since Feb. 24 and scored a pair of objectives in a comeback win over the Maple Leafs. Buffalo will want extra of that from him to maintain its playoff hopes alive. 1 36-31-7

It looks like the Senators’ magic could have run out at this level. Within the final 10 days, Ottawa has misplaced to the Blackhawks, Canucks, and Flames by a mixed 12 objectives. These losses have all however knocked the Senators out of the Jap Convention playoff image. 6 37-33-5

Tommy Novak, a third-round choose in 2015, has emerged as a constant supply of offense for the Predators. After spending elements of 5 seasons within the AHL, Novak has tallied 13 objectives and 15 assists in 34 video games with Nashville this season. He is a motive the workforce has remained a float after being an aggressive vendor on the commerce deadline. 1 37-29-8

If you are going to reverse your playoff fortunes, you may’t be dropping video games to the Geese and Coyotes. That is what the Flames have finished within the final week, and it has put a significant dent of their playoff possibilities. Calgary has one month to point out one thing that it hasn’t proven in any respect this season. If that does not occur, Darryl Sutter’s seat will probably be awfully heat. 1 35-26-15

Vancouver has received 5 straight video games, and J.T. Miller appears to have discovered a little bit of a groove below head coach Rick Tocchet. Miller has 4 objectives in his final 4 video games, and he has the chance to complete robust in what has been an in any other case tough season for him. — 34-34-7

Evgeny Kuznetsov has actually struggled not too long ago, and that is unhealthy information for a workforce that’s already a little bit shorthanded. Since Feb. 26, Kuznetsov has only one level, and he hasn’t discovered the scoresheet in his final six video games. Washington is preventing an uphill battle, and it wants Kuznetsov to start out piling up factors sooner relatively than later. 1 34-33-9

Pink Wings
One in every of Steve Yzerman’s priorities within the offseason must be getting Dylan Larkin some assist. Larkin is the one participant with greater than 20 objectives on the season (25), and the following closest participant is Dominik Kubalik at 18. If the Wings need to contend, they want extra firepower up entrance. 2 33-33-9

If any Blues followers are searching for any positives from this season, it must be Jordan Kyrou’s manufacturing. Kyrou has an enormous contract extension kicking in subsequent season, and he has set a brand new profession excessive in objectives with 30. The workforce round him has been a little bit of a large number this season, however Kyrou has proven he can fill the following with a excessive diploma of regularity. 2 35-34-6

Juuso Valimaki has quietly emerged as a dependable defender for the Coyotes this season. He has two objectives and 24 assists in 63 video games this season, and his on-ice impacts have been very encouraging. Valimaki has posted a minus-1 aim differential and a 49.7% anticipated objectives share at five-on-five, per Pure Stat Trick. These are a few of the finest numbers on your complete workforce. 2 27-36-13

Final summer season, the Geese signed Ryan Strome to a five-year contract price a complete of $25 million, and that hasn’t precisely labored out for both aspect thus far. After tallying 21 objectives and 54 factors with the Rangers final 12 months, Strome has simply 11 objectives and 31 factors in 2022-23. 2 23-42-10

Chicago was driving a four-game dropping streak. It was in a nosedive and bettering its draft lottery possibilities by the day. Then the Blackhawks went and beat the Bruins on Tuesday? Do not ask me how, however they discovered a approach to outduel the most effective workforce within the NHL. 3 24-45-6

To not be outdone by the Blackhawks, the Canadiens have been nonetheless searching for their first win in March. That’s, till Tristan Jarry had one of many worst durations of his profession. Jarry single-handedly ended Montreal’s seven-game skid. 2 30-40-6

Blue Jackets
Johnny Gaudreau hasn’t scored a aim since Feb. 14, and he has simply six assists in his final 9 video games. Columbus is aiming for the No. 1 general choose, however the franchise must be at the least a little bit involved to see Gaudreau struggling so badly. Possibly sticking him on a line with Connor Bedard subsequent season will assist. 1 23-43-8

The Flyers are getting in on the tanking motion too. They’ve now misplaced 4 straight video games in regulation, they usually’ve received simply two of their final 10 video games. At the very least Philadelphia ripped the band-aid off and parted methods with GM Chuck Fletcher in order that it could transfer ahead with a brand new imaginative and prescient. 1 29-32-13

Few groups have had goaltending extra conducive to tanking than the Sharks, to place it properly. James Reimer’s -11.44 objectives saved above common is tied for eighty fifth, per Pure Stat Trick, and he’s having a markedly higher season than his fellow netminder Kaapo Kahkonen. With -23.51 objectives saved above common, Kahkonen ranks ninety fifth. Solely Vancouver’s Spencer Martin has been worse. — 21-39-15

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