Dunkel Index: NHL Rankings (4/21/20)
We are heading down the home stretch of the 2020-2021 National Hockey League regular season. As always, the postseason is expected to be intense from the first puck drop to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals. The final stretch will see some great hockey games, with some interesting races to the finish. Be sure to stop by and see our NHL Rankings, as they are updated as of the last game:
The Carolina Hurricanes are at the top of the rankings with their 65 points. The Hurricanes are 30-10-5 record. While Florida is tied with them in points, and Tampa Bay is right behind, Carolina looks to be playing the most solid hockey right now. The Hurricanes are +38 in goal differential and have allowed just 108 goals on the season. The defense is solid and will keep them in every game. Tampa Bay falls 3rd on the current rankings, while the Panthers are 5th. Colorado and Vegas are the only two non Central Division teams in the Top 5. The Golden Hurricanes actually have the most points in all of the league with 66. Vegas has played 45 games and won 32 of them while losing twice in overtime.
Battle in the West
The Honda West Division is going to be quite a battle to see who grabs that fourth and final postseason spot. The Coyotes currently hold the spot by a single point over 2019 Champion St. Louis. The Sharks are just 4 points back, and the Kings are 5th. Arizona has played 3 more games than St. Louis, so there are some opportunities coming up for the Blues, who have not played a game since April 17th. Arizona comes in 20th, while St. Louis is 21st in the most recent rankings. The Coyotes and Blues do not meet up with each other anymore during the regular season.
Stars Making a Push
A season ago, the Dallas Stars won the Western Conference, only to lose in the Stanley Cup Finals to the Lightning. Dallas got off to a slow start but has made quite the push. The Stars have heated things up so strongly that they have moved within a point of Nashville for the fourth and final spot in the Central Division. Dallas has played two less games than Nashville as well. The Dunkel rankings really like Dallas, as they have moved to 6th, while Nashville remains at #15.
Bottom of the Barrel
There is no surprise - the Buffalo Sabres are at the bottom of the rankings. It’s been a historically bad season for the Sabres. They are 12-27-7 on the season for 31 points. Ottawa, Anaheim, and New Jersey are the teams just ahead of the Sabres in the rankings. The Sabres are just 3 points behind the Devils. New Jersey has been awful as well, with seven straight losses.
Once again, be sure to stop by and take a look at our NHL Rankings, and see where your favorite team lands. Enjoy the week of hockey!