Not a ton of movement on this week’s Pacific Division Power Rankings, as teams dig in their heels for the final playoff push. The 2-4 battle in the division may be the most exciting race in the NHL.
There is plenty to play for in the regular season’s final 10 games. One of Vancouver, Calgary and Los Angeles will host a playoff series against another team in this group of three, while one is likely to miss the playoffs entirely.
Let’s take a look back at the week that was in the Pacific Division, and see where its four postseason contenders stand with less than three weeks to play.
Three Stars of the Week
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (EDM): Division-leading four goals (five points)
- Daniel Sedin (VAN): Two goals and division-leading six points
- Anze Kopitar (LA): A goal and five points.
Stat of the Week
There are only two teams in the Western Conference with a losing record, both are in the Pacific Division.
Highlight of the Week
1. Anaheim Ducks (46-21-7) LW: 1(20 consecutive weeks)
While Sunday’s 7-2 beat down by the New York Rangers was not anyone’s idea of a great way to end a week, the Ducks had a four-game winning streak before that and hold an 11-point lead atop the division. Anaheim is fighting for nothing more than an opportunity at hosting the Western Conference Final, should they get there. They’re in a four-horse race with Chicago, Nashville and St. Louis for that honor.
2. Vancouver Canucks (42-26-4) LW: 2
The Canucks had a fairly soft schedule last week, but finished 3-1 after back-to-back road wins in Los Angeles and Glendale. Vancouver has won six of their last eight games and maintains the No. 2 spot in the division and the power rankings. The Flames and Kings are in striking distance, but the Canucks have the advantage heading into the final 10 games.
3. Los Angeles Kings (35-23-14) LW: 3
Last week was a mixed bag of success for a Kings team fighting for a playoff spot. They went 1-1-1, including a 3-1 win over the New Jersey Devils to begin a five-game road trip. Los Angeles still has some work to do in order to earn the opportunity to defend its Stanley Cup championship.
4. Calgary Flames (40-27-6) LW: 4
The Flames continue to hang in the thick of the playoff race, getting points in three of four games last week (2-1-1) and eight of their last 10 (6-2-2). Calgary has one more game at home this week before starting a five-game road trip against three playoff teams, a hot Stars club and the Oilers. It looks like the Flames and Kings will battle it out for the No. 3 spot in the division, with the loser watching the playoffs from home.
5. San Jose Sharks (35-30-8) LW: 5
Maybe we all should have seen this coming. After a promising start to the season, the Sharks look as dysfunctional now as they did in the offseason. San Jose went 1-3 in the first four games of their seven-game road trip. Their playoff chances are dead. Get ready for an offseason of change in the Bay Area.
6. Edmonton Oilers (20-40-13) LW: 6
Edmonton is far from good, but they have at least been competent lately. They went 1-1-1 last week, finally jumping the Coyotes in the standings. That is as far as they will move up the standings this season, but for a team with so much defeat engrained in its culture, winning a few games down the stretch is something to build on.
7. Arizona Coyotes (21-44-8) LW: 7
Losers in 18 of their past 19 games, the Coyotes continue to sink further and further down the standings. A severe lack of offense is the main culprit of the team’s lack of success. Arizona plays Buffalo twice in the next week – two games that will help identify which team has the best odds of landing Connor McDavid.