SportsTips’ NHL Power Rankings 2021: Week 8

SportsTips’ NHL Power Rankings 2021: Week 8
Mon 8th March 2021

We reached Week 8 of the NHL season and there was a big shakeup in the Power Rankings. Toronto drops out of the top spot as the red-hot Golden Knights move into first. The Hurricanes and the Islanders both made big jumps thanks to significant winning streaks.

The rankings also saw some significant slides. Both Edmonton and Philadelphia dropped out of the Top 10, falling into the middle of the pack. Plus, the Ottawa Senators continue their ascent, reaching No. 29. At this rate, all they need is about 90 more weeks to reach the top spot.

Our rankings are based upon a number of factors, including recent level of play, injuries, and quality wins. 

1. Vegas Golden Knights

Stanley Cup Odds: +800
Record: 16-4-1
Last Week’s Ranking: 3

Thanks to a six-game winning streak, the Vegas Golden Knights jump to the top spot in the Power Rankings. It was not just that they had won six games in a row, but who they had beaten. They downed Colorado to start the streak then defeated Minnesota twice last week.

The Wild had entered on a six-game winning streak, but no more. The Golden Knights proved they can win in several ways, earning two 5-4 overtime victories as well as shutting out San Jose on Saturday.

It is another big week ahead for Vegas. They begin a four-game road trip with a pair of games in Minnesota before traveling to St. Louis to take on the Blues on Friday and Saturday.

2. Tampa Bay Lightning

Stanley Cup Odds: +650
Record: 17-4-2
Last Week’s Ranking: 2

Tampa Bay stays in the No. 2 slot. They went 3-0-1 last week, shutting out Dallas on Tuesday before taking two of three from Chicago. Tampa Bay had won six in a row before the shootout loss on Friday. They are 7-0-1 in their last eight games. Even more impressive is that they have allowed 11 total goals during the eight-game stretch.

This week is set up for a 3-0-0 stretch. Tampa Bay finishes off their six-game road trip with two games in Detroit before welcoming Nashville on Saturday.

3. Toronto Maple Leafs

Stanley Cup Odds: +800
Record: 18-6-2
Last Week’s Ranking: 1

With a 2-2-0 week, Toronto drops out of the top spot. They swept the Oilers in Edmonton before traveling to Vancouver where they were swept by the Canucks. The Maple Leafs mustard just three goals in the two losses to Vancouver. Goaltending was solid all week, allowing eight total goals.

Toronto returns home for three games against Winnipeg starting on Tuesday. They then travel to Ottawa on Sunday to close out the week. The Maple Leafs are 9-3-1 both at home and on the road.

4. Carolina Hurricanes

Stanley Cup Odds: +1200
Record: 17-6-1
Last Week’s Ranking: 10

Carolina jumps six spots in the Power Rankings, thanks to a five-game winning streak. They were quite impressive all week, defeating Florida twice and taking single contests against Nashville and Detroit.

The Hurricanes scored 16 goals total and have to be pleased with the goaltenders who allowed two goals in each of the four games. James Reimer is starting to settle in, allowing three goals or fewer in eight straight games.

Carolina has a real shot at extending their winning streak to eight before next week’s Power Rankings. They welcome Nashville on Tuesday and Thursday before traveling to Detroit next Sunday. Carolina is 8-1-1 at home.

5. New York Islanders

Stanley Cup Odds: +2500
Record: 15-6-4
Last Week’s Ranking: 13

Carolina is not the only team on a five-game winning streak. New York defeated New Jersey on Tuesday before sweeping three games from Buffalo at home.

The Islanders allowed seven total goals during the week and have allowed seven total during the five-game winning streak. Ilya Sorokin is proving to be an outstanding backup, allowing two goals in each of his two starts last week and he has allowed four total goals over his last four starts, going 4-0-0.

It is a tough week ahead to start as the Islanders welcome Boston on Tuesday. They then welcome the Devils on Thursday before traveling to New Jersey for a pair of games over the weekend. New York is the only team to record at least one in every one of their home games, going 10-0-2.

6. Florida Panthers 

Stanley Cup Odds: +2500
Record: 15-5-4
Last Week’s Ranking: 4

Florida went 2-1-1 last week, losing in overtime at home to Carolina on Monday, then sweeping Nashville in a two-game set on Thursday and Saturday before losing in Carolina on Sunday.

That drops the Panthers two spots in the rankings, but they are still playing exceptional hockey. The problem for Florida is that they are in a division that has two teams above them in the Power Rankings. The Central is definitely a brutal division.

Florida has the opportunity to make up some ground. They travel to Columbus for a pair of games before coming home to face Chicago on Saturday.

7. Washington Capitals

Stanley Cup Odds: +2500
Record: 14-6-4
Last Week’s Ranking: 11

Washington went 2-1-0 on the road last week, splitting a pair of games with Boston before beating Philadelphia on Sunday. Vitek Vanacek was shelled in the loss to Boston, but Ilya Samsonov is playing quite well, stopping 36 of 36 shots by the Flyers on Sunday. He is making a bid for the top goaltending spot.

Washington welcomes New Jersey to town on Tuesday before traveling to take on Philadelphia on Thursday and Saturday. The Capitals are 7-3-2 both at home and on the road. 

8. Boston Bruins

Stanley Cup Odds: +800
Record: 13-6-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 6

Boston is in a bit of a slump, going 1-1-1 last week. They are 4-5-1 over their last 10, dropping them from the No. 3 spot in the Power Rankings just two weeks ago down to No. 8 this week.

Boston is still getting outstanding goaltending, allowing four total goals during the week, but they are struggling to score. The Bruins have scored 14 total goals in their last six games, and five of those came in the victory over Washington on Friday.

The week starts out with a tough one, as they travel to take on the red-hot New York Islanders on Tuesday. Boston then returns home to face the Rangers for two. The Bruins are 6-2-1 at home.

9. Winnipeg Jets

Stanley Cup Odds: +3500
Record: 15-8-1
Last Week’s Ranking: 7

Winnipeg had a solid week, going 2-2-0. That dropped them two spots in the rankings as they split a pair of games with Vancouver and Montréal. Inconsistent play by the team was a major issue as they scored nine total goals in the two victories and just one in the two losses.

Winnipeg has three on the road this week and it is not an easy trio. They travel to Toronto for all three. The Jets are 6-4-0 on the road.

10. Minnesota Wild

Stanley Cup Odds: +1800
Record: 13-8-1
Last Week’s Ranking: 8

Minnesota got a little dose of reality this past week. They were riding high on a six-game winning streak when they took on Vegas on Monday but lost both of their contests against the Golden Knights.

The team then split a pair of games in Arizona, finishing the week 1-3-0. However, they only dropped two spots in the Power Rankings because of how well they have been playing of late. No. 1 goaltender Cam Talbot returned but he is not looking good. Kaapo Kähkönen anyone?

Minnesota gets a chance at a little revenge this week as they start a five-game homestand with two against Vegas and then welcome Arizona for two. The Wild are 5-3-0 at home.

11. Colorado Avalanche

Stanley Cup Odds: +800
Record: 13-7-2
Last Week’s Ranking: 12

Colorado went 2-1-1 last week, splitting a pair of games with San Jose on the road before splitting a pair of overtime games at home with Anaheim over the weekend.

Star goaltender Philipp Grubauer looks like he has righted the ship. After giving up five goals to San Jose on March 1, he has allowed two total goals over his last two starts.

The Avalanche have a golden opportunity to jump up the standings. All four of their games are at home this week as part of a nine-game homestand. They welcome Arizona for two before welcoming Los Angeles for a pair. Colorado is 6-3-1 at home.

12. St. Louis Blues

Stanley Cup Odds: +3000
Record: 14-8-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 18

St. Louis jumps up six spots in the Power Rankings, going 3-0-1. All of that was on the road, where they took two games from Anaheim before splitting a pair of overtime games with Los Angeles over the weekend. The Blues are now 10-2-1 on the road, the best record in the NHL.

That is good news, as they start the week in San Jose before returning home for a pair of games against Vegas over the weekend. The Blues have not been very good at home, where they are 4-6-2.

13. Pittsburgh Penguins

Stanley Cup Odds: +2500
Record: 14-9-1
Last Week’s Ranking: 15

Pittsburgh went 3-1-0 last week, moving them to 7-3-0 over their last 10. They took two of three games at home against Philadelphia before beating the Rangers on Sunday. The Penguins got some big-time scoring production last week, getting 18 goals total while allowing 10. Sidney Crosby recorded four points in the last three games.

Pittsburgh has one more game at home against New York before traveling to take on Buffalo for a pair of games. The Penguins are 10-2-0 at home but are only 4-7-1 on the road.

14. Philadelphia Flyers

Stanley Cup Odds: +1600
Record: 12-7-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 5

Philadelphia plummeted nine spots in the Power Rankings. That came courtesy of a very disappointing 1-3-0 week. Philadelphia lost two of three games in Pittsburgh before returning home to lose to Washington on Sunday, 3-1. That made the Flyers 5-4-1 over their last 10.

Philadelphia has all three of their contests this week at home, welcoming Buffalo on Tuesday before Washington comes to town for a pair of games starting on Thursday. Philadelphia is 6-3-2 at home.

15. Edmonton Oilers

Stanley Cup Odds: +1400
Record: 15-11-0
Last Week’s Ranking: 9

Like Philadelphia, Edmonton saw a sharp decline in their ranking, falling six spots. They lost two games to Toronto at home before beating Calgary on Saturday. Edmonton is now 1-3-0 through the first four games of their seven-game homestand. The Oilers scored just five goals during the week.

Edmonton is now 7-8-0 at home, but they will have the opportunity to improve upon that as they welcome Ottawa for three straight home games starting on Monday. The Oilers close the week on Saturday in Vancouver.

16. Chicago Blackhawks

Stanley Cup Odds: +6600
Record: 13-8-5
Last Week’s Ranking: 14

Chicago went 1-1-1 during the week, but that is quite an achievement when the team you went .500 against was Tampa Bay. No shame in coming away with a week like that, and that kept Chicago in the middle of the pack.

The Blackhawks head to the road for a six straight game starting on Tuesday. They play in Dallas on Tuesday and Thursday before traveling to Florida on Saturday. Chicago is 6-4-3 on the road.

17. Montréal Canadiens

Stanley Cup Odds: +2200
Record: 11-6-6
Last Week’s Ranking: 17

Montréal look like they turned things around a little bit this past week keeping them in the same position as last week in the rankings. They went 2-0-1, defeating Ottawa on Tuesday before losing to Winnipeg at home on Thursday in overtime.

They then trounced the Jets on Saturday at home, 7-1. Montréal had begun the week on a five-game losing streak, but the turning of the calendar may have been just what the Canadiens needed.

Montréal takes to the road for six straight games starting on Monday. They have a pair in Vancouver before traveling to take on Calgary for two starting on Thursday. The Canadians are 6-1-5 on the road.

18. Los Angeles Kings

Stanley Cup Odds: +5000
Record: 10-8-5
Last Week’s Ranking: 16

Los Angeles got off to a bad start last week, losing to Arizona at home on Wednesday before splitting a pair of games with St. Louis over the weekend. Both teams have won contests in overtime. They are 6-2-2 in their last 10 games.

The Kings head to the road starting on Monday. They played two games in Anaheim before traveling to Colorado for a pair. Los Angeles is 6-5-1 on the road.

19. Arizona Coyotes

Stanley Cup Odds: +8000
Record: 11-10-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 23

Arizona came away with a solid week, going 2-1-0. They defeated Los Angeles on the road on Wednesday before returning home to split a pair of games against the red-hot Minnesota Wild. Minnesota had won six of eight games entering that set.

The Coyotes head to the road this week for seven straight games. They play two in Colorado starting on Monday before traveling to Minnesota on Friday to play a pair of games. Arizona is 4-3-0 on the road.

20. New York Rangers

Stanley Cup Odds: +6600
Record: 10-10-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 25

New York had a very impressive week, going 3-1-0. They started out with a 3-2 victory over Buffalo at home on Tuesday before heading to New Jersey where they swept a set of two games. The Rangers lost to Pittsburgh on Sunday. The Rangers scored 16 goals last week while allowing 11. 

New York is now 5-4-1 on the road this season. That is good news is all three of their games this week are on the road. The Rangers stay in Pittsburgh to take on the Penguins on Tuesday before traveling to Boston for a pair of games starting on Thursday.

21. Nashville Predators

Stanley Cup Odds: +8000
Record: 11-14-0
Last Week’s Ranking: 20

Nashville went 1-3-0, dropping them one spot in the Power Rankings. They had a brutal homestand, losing all three of their games, one to Carolina and two to Florida. They then headed to the road where they defeated Dallas in a shootout on Sunday, 4-3.

Nashville is now 7-7-0 at home, but they have not been very good on the road, going 4-7-0. Bad news for the Predators as all three of their games are on the road this week.

They take on Carolina for a pair starting on Tuesday before traveling to Tampa Bay on Saturday. It would not be surprising to see them plummet a few more spots in the rankings next week.

22. Calgary Flames

Stanley Cup Odds: +4000
Record: 11-12-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 24

Calgary went 1-2-1, splitting a pair of games with Ottawa to start the week. They lost at home to Edmonton on Saturday before falling in overtime to Ottawa on Saturday. Inconsistent play has been a major issue for the Flames. Two of their games were decided by four goals while the other two were decided by one.

Calgary remains at home for two more games this week as part of a five-game homestand. They play Montréal in a pair of games starting on Thursday. The Flames are 5-4-1 at home.

23. Columbus Blue Jackets

Stanley Cup Odds: +8000
Record: 10-11-5
Last Week’s Ranking: 21

Columbus earned victories in their first two games of the week, defeating Detroit at home on Tuesday before traveling to Dallas on Thursday where they defeated the Stars. They were then shutout by Dallas on Saturday. Columbus is now 3-6-1 in their last 10.

The Blue Jackets have all four of their games at home this week, where they are 6-4-3. Florida comes to town for a pair starting on Tuesday before Dallas comes in for two games over the weekend.

24. Dallas Stars

Stanley Cup Odds: +5000
Record: 7-8-5
Last Week’s Ranking: 22

Dallas continues their slow descent down the Power Rankings, falling two more spots. They went 1-2-1 during the week, disappointing considering that all four of those games were at home.

Dallas was shutout by Dallas on Tuesday, then lost to Columbus on Thursday before shutting out the Blue Jackets on Saturday. The Stars lost in a shootout to Nashville on Sunday. The Stars are now 2-6-2 over their last 10 games.

Dallas opens the week with two more games at home against Chicago before traveling to Columbus for a pair of games over the weekend. The Stars had been abysmal on the road at 2-5-1.

25. New Jersey Devils

Stanley Cup Odds: +6600
Record: 8-11-2
Last Week’s Ranking: 19

New Jersey went 1-3-0 during the week, losing their first three contests before shutting out Boston on Sunday, 1-0. New Jersey scored six total goals during the week. Scoring is obviously a major issue for this team. They now have a -15 goal differential.

The Devils start the week on the road, traveling to Washington on Tuesday before heading to New York to take on the Islanders on Thursday. New Jersey then returns home on Saturday to face the Islanders in a pair of games. Home cooking has not been good to the Devils, who are 2-9-1 at home the season. New Jersey is to-8-0 in their last 10.

26. San Jose Sharks

Stanley Cup Odds: +10,000
Record: 8-11-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 26

San Jose started out the week with a decisive 6-2 victory over Colorado on Monday. However, they then lost their next three games, shutout in two of those contests. The Sharks gave up 19 total goals in the four games.

San Jose is wasting an eight-game homestand, now 1-4-1 with a postponement through the first seven games. They get one more opportunity in San Jose on Monday when they welcome St. Louis. The Sharks then travel to Anaheim for a pair of games over the weekend.

27. Vancouver Canucks

Stanley Cup Odds: +8000
Record: 11-5-2
Last Week’s Ranking: 29

Vancouver had a good week, going 3-1-0. That helped to move them up the standings two spots. They split a pair of games in Winnipeg before returning home to sweep Toronto. Overall, Vancouver allowed eight goals during the week, a good sign for a beleaguered goaltending crew.

The Canucks remain at home this week to complete their five-game homestand. They welcome Montréal for a pair of games starting on Monday then Edmonton comes to town on Saturday. Vancouver is 7-6-2 at home.

28. Anaheim Ducks

Stanley Cup Odds: +10,000
Record: 7-12-6
Last Week’s Ranking: 27

Anaheim started out the week with two losses against St. Louis at home. They then split a pair of overtime games in Colorado, finishing the week 1-2-1. Every game for Anaheim was decided by one goal. The victory on Saturday snapped a nine-game losing streak (0-6-3).

Anaheim starts a four game homestand on Monday when Los Angeles comes in for a pair of games. San Jose then comes in over the weekend for two. The Ducks are 3-7-3 at home.

29. Ottawa Senators

Stanley Cup Odds: +75,000
Record: 9-17-1
Last Week’s Ranking: 30

The Ottawa Senators are moving on up. They went 2-2-0 during the week, giving the Senators a 5-5-0 record over their last 10 games. Ottawa defeated Calgary at home on Monday, 5-1, then lost to Montréal on Tuesday, 3-1. They traveled to Calgary where they lost on Thursday, 7-3 before defeating the Flames in a shootout on Sunday, 4-3.

Ottawa will remain on the road for the first three games this week, taking on Edmonton for each of those three contests. They then return home on Sunday to start a six-game homestand with Toronto being first on the schedule. Ottawa is 4-11-0 on the road.

30. Detroit Red Wings

Stanley Cup Odds: +75,000
Record: 7-16-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 31

Detroit lost both of their games last week, losing to Columbus on Tuesday, 4-1, before falling to Carolina on Thursday, 5-2. The Red Wings are now 3-6-1 in their last 10 games and are losers of three straight games. However, they get out of the last spot in the Power Rankings.

Detroit starts a six-game homestand on Tuesday when they welcome the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tampa Bay remains in town on Thursday before Carolina comes to Detroit on Sunday. Nothing like all three of your games being against two of the top four teams in the NHL Detroit is 4-6-2 at home.

31. Buffalo Sabres

Stanley Cup Odds: +8000
Record: 6-14-3
Last Week’s Ranking: 28

Buffalo lost all four games last week, losing to the Rangers on Tuesday, 3-2, then being swept by the Islanders in three straight games. The Sabres are now losers of six straight games and are 2-7-1 in their last 10. Only Anaheim and New Jersey have a worse record in that stretch.

Things do not get any better for the Sabres. They traveled to Philadelphia to take on the Flyers on Tuesday before welcoming Pittsburgh the town for a pair. Buffalo is 2-7-2 at home. They are now tied for the second worst goal differential in the NHL at -23.

The 2021 NHL is well underway now! If you want to catch up with all the latest information, make sure you visit our NHL hub page.

*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of Bet365.

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