NHL Power Rankings – 1-32 ballot, every crew’s largest shock

The primary two weeks of the 2022-23 NHL season are within the books, and whereas some issues have not shocked us — the Carolina Hurricanes and Vegas Golden Knights main their divisions, and the Arizona Coyotes close to the underside — there was no scarcity of shocks for each membership up to now. This week alongside our up to date energy rankings, we’ll establish the participant, stat or development that has shocked us most for all 32 groups.

How we rank: A panel of ESPN hockey commentators, analysts, reporters and editors charges groups towards each other — taking into consideration recreation outcomes, accidents and upcoming schedule — and people outcomes are tabulated to supply the listing featured right here.

Observe: Earlier rating for every crew refers back to the final version, printed Oct. 21. Factors paces are via Thursday’s video games.

Earlier rating: 1
Factors proportion: 0.750
Subsequent seven days: vs. NYI (Oct. 28), @ PHI (Oct. 29), vs. WSH (Oct. 31), @ TB (Nov. 3)

A shocking linchpin to Carolina’s early push has been its second line, centered by the emergent Jesperi Kotkaniemi. The Hurricanes have been ready to see one of the best of their younger ahead, and his unit with Andrei Svechnikov and Martin Necas is showcasing simply that. Kotkaniemi has been an incredibly good two-way contributor, and is 57.5% within the faceoff dot.

Earlier rating: 7
Factors proportion: 0.875
Subsequent seven days: @ CBJ (Oct. 28), @ PIT (Nov. 1), @ NYR (Nov. 3)

Merely put, this has been a surprisingly nice begin for a crew who many believed was previous its level of great rivalry. Boston was lacking Brad Marchand (their main scorer from final season) and Charlie McAvoy (who generates ample offense from the blue line) for the primary two weeks, and nonetheless managed a 6-1-0 file whereas tying for essentially the most targets scored within the league (30).

Earlier rating: 9
Factors proportion: 0.643
Subsequent seven days: @ NJ (Otc. 28), @ NYI (Oct. 29)

Colorado’s energy play has been shockingly good, and the Avalanche are using an unconventional model besides. Whereas Colorado’s prime unit is the traditional alignment (4 forwards and one defenseman), they’ve tried a second unit with three (!) defensemen and two forwards. Surprisingly, that is been a profitable recipe — the Avalanche are at 50% on the person benefit, practically 20 proportion factors higher than the following crew.

Earlier rating: 5
Factors proportion: 0.643
Subsequent seven days: @ VAN (Oct. 28), @ SEA (Oct. 29), vs. BOS (Nov. 1), @ BUF (Nov. 2)

Sidney Crosby enjoying like a Hart Trophy candidate will not flooring anybody. When Crosby’s linemate Jake Guentzel acquired harm although, the shocking decide to initially substitute him was Danton Heinen, who’s having an unexpectedly nice begin. The winger reeled off three targets and 6 factors in his first seven video games, and is enjoying a few of his greatest hockey ever — all on a $1 million deal!

Earlier rating: 2
Factors proportion: 0.833
Subsequent seven days: vs. EDM (Oct. 29), vs. SEA (Nov. 1), vs. NSH (Nov. 3)

It is no nice shock that Calgary is off to a franchise-best begin after bringing on Nazem Kadri and Jonathan Huberdeau over the summer season. However the chemistry Kadri discovered so shortly with Andrew Mangiapane and Dillon Dube on the Flames’ second line? That is a welcome shock for Calgary’s offense. It is unimaginable to foretell how gamers will mesh — and getting within the groove can take time — but that trio has been completely complementary.

Earlier rating: 8
Factors proportion: 0.750
Subsequent seven days: vs. ANA (Oct. 28), vs. WPG (Oct. 30), @ WSH (Nov. 1), @ OTT (Nov. 3)

How’s this for steadiness? The white-hot Golden Knights have gotten not less than one level from 19 of their 20 skaters this season. And Vegas has 14 completely different aim scorers already. For a membership that struggled to remain aggressive down the stretch final season, the Golden Knights’ surprisingly sturdy offensive assault is not letting any opponents off straightforward proper now.

Earlier rating: 6
Factors proportion: 0.563
Subsequent seven days: vs. OTT (Oct. 29), @ ARI (Nov. 1), @ SJ (Nov. 3)

Bear in mind final spring, when Florida’s woeful energy play contributed to the President’s Trophy winner’s early postseason exit? Nicely, in a surprising twist, the following particular groups overhaul hasn’t been good. The Panthers are averaging extra power-play alternatives per recreation (4.71) than any crew within the league, however are an terrible 6.1% at changing them. Each man-advantage targets Florida scored got here in the identical interval of the identical recreation. Again to the drafting board.

Earlier rating: 12
Factors proportion: 0.563
Subsequent seven days: @ LA (Oct. 29), @ ANA (Oct. 30), vs. PHI (Nov. 2)

Toronto has regarded shockingly out of types at occasions, from their many defensive miscues to issues over streaky scoring. The Leafs’ surprisingly steady spot? Goaltending. Matt Murray could also be out with an harm, however Ilya Samsonov has been wonderful, offering Toronto each alternative to determine itself out. The goalie might use somewhat extra assist from his associates.

Earlier rating: 3
Factors proportion: 0.500
Subsequent seven days: @ DAL (Oct. 29), @ ARI (Oct. 30), vs. PHI (Nov. 1), vs. BOS (Nov. 3)

The Rangers turned in some shocking outcomes of late with losses to each Columbus and San Jose. However beneath the floor, New York’s underlying numbers do not counsel disaster — they seem to be a top-five possession crew (and dominate the face-off circle), common fewer than 30 pictures towards per recreation and greater than three targets per recreation.

Earlier rating: 4
Factors proportion: 0.688
Subsequent seven days: vs. NYR (Oct. 29), vs. LA (Nov. 1), @ ARI (Nov. 3)

It is a shock that Roope Hintz is a shock (to some). The middle launched right into a point-per-game tempo this season that adopted up on one of the vital unheralded 37-goal seasons within the league in 2021-22. Whereas Jake Oettinger (deservedly) attracts headlines and Dallas’ wonderful total begin to the marketing campaign is nice, Hintz’s function in that success should not be catching anybody off guard.

Earlier rating: 20
Factors proportion: 0.625
Subsequent seven days: @ CGY (Oct. 29), vs. NSH (Nov. 1), vs. NJ (Nov. 3)

For as soon as, Edmonton’s success is not being pushed completely by simply these two gamers everybody all the time talks about (Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl). The Oilers have gotten surprisingly constant contributions up entrance from their third line, led by Ryan McLeod and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and that bodes properly for the crew’s route this season.

Earlier rating: 10
Factors proportion: 0.500
Subsequent seven days: vs. MTL (Oct. 29), vs. LA (Oct. 31), vs. NYI (Nov. 3)

The encore to Jordan Binnington’s actually tumultuous 2021-22 season has been an incredibly robust opening to this new marketing campaign. The Blues’ netminder began 3-1-0, with one shutout and a .936 SV% to his credit score. St. Louis believed in Binnington even when he faltered; now the goaltender seems to be proving his mettle another time.

Earlier rating: 23
Factors proportion: 0.571
Subsequent seven days: @ FLA (Oct. 29), @ TB (Nov. 1), vs. VGK (Nov. 3)

The Senators have exhibited an anticipated depth of scoring expertise up entrance. The true shock in Ottawa has been their impressively sound protection. It is not simply the Thomas Chabot present, both. Artem Zub has been robust, Jake Sanderson is an rising star, Erik Brannstrom has bounced again, and even Travis Hamonic is becoming in. No surprise Ottawa is off to an encouraging begin.

Earlier rating: 17
Factors proportion: 0.571
Subsequent seven days: vs. CHI (Oct. 29), vs. DET (Oct. 31), vs. PIT (Nov. 2)

We knew Rasmus Dahlin can be good. However … this good? Like, main NHL defensemen in factors (9), setting data (as the primary blueliner in historical past to attain a aim in 5 straight video games to open a season) and usually dominating one opponent after one other? That is shock Buffalo can get behind.

Earlier rating: 16
Factors proportion: 0.571
Subsequent seven days: vs. MIN (Oct. 29), @ BUF (Oct. 31), vs. WSH (Nov. 3)

Detroit had a busy offseason, buying free brokers who’ve contributed to the crew’s scorching begin. Elmer Soderblom is an in-house lineup addition who’s been surprisingly efficient early on. The rookie is an intimidating presence on the ice, at 6-foot-6, 220 kilos, and makes use of that dimension to his benefit (see: Soderblom undressing Kings defenseman Sean Durzi with an alley-oop cross — to himself). Soderblom’s two targets in 5 video games appear like only the start of his run.

Earlier rating: 26
Factors proportion: 0.571
Subsequent seven days: vs. COL (Oct. 28), vs. CBJ (Oct. 30), @ VAN (Nov. 1), @ EDM (Nov. 3)

Jesper Bratt was tied for the league lead in scoring (three targets, 12 factors) via seven video games. Identical to all of us predicted. Bratt is the Devils’ shocking standout up to now in a begin that included potting two targets and an help in simply 13 minutes of ice time towards Detroit. That is some spectacular effectivity.

Earlier rating: 18
Factors proportion: 0.500
Subsequent seven days: @ NSH (Oct. 29), @ CAR (Oct. 31), vs. VGK (Nov. 1, @ DET (Nov. 3)

The Capitals buying free agent goaltender Darcy Kuemper was their massive swing of the offseason. Its netted surprisingly mediocre outcomes. Washington is bottom-10 in targets allowed up to now (3.43 per recreation) whereas Kuemper and his new teammates have labored to discover a rhythm. This stuff can take time, however given Kuemper’s championship pedigree and the veteran-laden lineup round him, it has been an unusually gradual transition.

Earlier rating: 11
Factors proportion: 0.444
Subsequent seven days: vs. TOR (Oct. 29), @ STL (Oct. 31), @ DAL (Nov. 1), @ CHI (Nov. 3)

There’s been a shocking ascension within the Kings’ ranks, and his identify is Gabriel Vilardi. The 23-year-old had beforehand struggled to change into a full-time NHLer, however that appears to be up to now as Vilardi led L.A. with seven factors via seven video games out of the gate — which additionally matched Vilardi’s 25-game level whole from a season in the past. Onwards and upwards.

Earlier rating: 13
Factors proportion: 0.714
Subsequent seven days: vs. CAR (Oct. 29), @ NYR (Nov. 1), @ TOR (Nov. 2)

The Flyers going 3-0-0 out of the gate? Shocker. The shocking spine of their success? Carter Hart. The netminder’s 4-0-0 begin with a .949 SV% and 1.75 GAA powered Philadelphia to a good spot within the early-season standings.

Earlier rating: 22
Factors proportion: 0.500
Subsequent seven days: @ SJ (Oct. 29), vs. OTT (Nov. 1), vs. CAR (Nov. 3)

Steven Stamkos main the Lightning with seven targets in seven video games? Not a shock. That Tampa Bay scored solely 17 targets whole via its first eight video games? Extra surprising. The Lightning offense has didn’t catch hearth via a below-average begin to this season.

Earlier rating: 25
Factors proportion: 0.500
Subsequent seven days: @ DET (Oct. 29), @ CHI (Oct. 30), vs. MTL (Nov. 1), vs. SEA (Nov. 3)

The Wild have been a shocking enigma after a 113-point 2021-22 season. Minnesota went 0-3 out of the gate with a rusty-looking Marc-Andre Fleury in web (posting an .847 SV% and 5.25 GAA) whereas main the NHL in targets towards. Then Fleury rebounded, and the crew considerably adopted swimsuit in its subsequent three — with wins over Vancouver and Montreal and an time beyond regulation loss to Boston — however what an surprising curler coaster up to now.

Earlier rating: 14
Factors proportion: 0.429
Subsequent seven days: @ CAR (Oct. 28), vs. COL (Oct. 29), @ CHI (Nov. 1), @ STL (Nov. 3)

The Islanders’ incapability to attain constantly is not so shocking given the dearth of offseason turnover. Ilya Sorokin’s difficulties had been extra surprising. New York’s starter went 1-3-0 to begin, with a 2.84 GAA and .908 SV%. Then Sorokin posted a 41-save shutout towards the Rangers. Will the true Sorokin please rise up?

Earlier rating: 19
Factors proportion: 0.571
Subsequent seven days: @ ARI (Oct. 28), @ VGK (Oct. 30), vs. MTL (Nov. 3)

From the small-sample-size division: When the Jets rating 4 targets, they win. When the Jets rating fewer than 4 targets, they lose. That is been the surprisingly constant development to begin their first six video games — and is considerably surprising given the presence of elite netminder Connor Hellebuyck. Let’s have a look at how lengthy it holds.

Earlier rating: 24
Factors proportion: 0.375
Subsequent seven days: vs. BOS (Oct. 28), @ NJ (Oct. 30)

A not-so-fun shock for the Blue Jackets: Not even Johnny Gaudreau might stop them from being the final crew within the NHL this season to attain an influence play aim (beginning the season 0-for-20). Yikes.

Earlier rating: 29
Factors proportion: 0.571
Subsequent seven days: @ BUF (Oct. 29), vs. MIN (Oct. 30), vs. NYI (Nov. 1), vs. LA (Nov. 3)

The Blackhawks have been a surprisingly resilient group. Regardless of a roster depleted of contributors from seasons previous, Chicago has managed three come-from-behind victories already. That is not so dangerous, and positively out-paces the low bar of expectations most pundits had for the Blackhawks this season.

Earlier rating: 21
Factors proportion: 0.500
Subsequent seven days: @ STL (Oct. 29), @ MIN (Nov. 1), @ WPG (Nov. 3)

The rebuild could also be on in Montreal, however the Canadiens’ depth is surprisingly robust already. Sean Monahan and Kirby Dach have elevated Montreal up entrance much more than anticipated, whereas the freshman-heavy again finish highlighted by Arber Xhekaj and Kaiden Guhle has been making robust, constant contributions. That is a win.

Earlier rating: 15
Factors proportion: 0.438
Subsequent seven days: vs. WSH (Oct. 29), @ EDM (Nov. 1), @ CGY (Nov. 3)

It is early, however seeing Nashville on the backside of a number of league classes? Stunning. The Predators have constantly blown leads, and rank among the many NHL’s worst in targets, pictures on web and in special-teams success. Nashville has expertise in its depths, that expertise simply hasn’t come to the forefront.

Earlier rating: 30
Factors proportion: 0.444
Subsequent seven days: vs. PIT (Oct. 29), @ CGY (Nov. 1), @ MIN (Nov. 3)

The Kraken look like giving Shane Wright a surprisingly restricted audition. The rookie averages fewer minutes (6:51 per recreation) than every other Kraken skater, and he hasn’t had a lot probability to actually get entangled. Given the nine-game window Seattle has to resolve about Wright’s subsequent transfer — and the very fact Wright may very well be enjoying massive minutes in along with his junior crew — it is an fascinating technique to take.

Earlier rating: 31
Factors proportion: 0.333
Subsequent seven days: vs. WPG (Oct. 28), vs. NYR (Oct. 30), vs. FLA (Nov. 1), vs. DAL (Nov. 3)

Arizona averaged extra targets (3.17 per recreation) via their first six video games than the next golf equipment: Florida, Tampa Bay, Toronto and the New York Rangers. Do not act such as you’re not (somewhat) shocked.

Earlier rating: 32
Factors proportion: 0.300
Subsequent seven days: vs. TB (Oct. 29), vs. ANA (Nov. 1), vs. FLA (Nov. 3)

Did anybody have an Erik Karlsson resurgence on their Sharks’ Bingo card? San Jose’s early returns have been iffy, however Karlsson’s shockingly good play has not been. The veteran appears to be like higher than he has in years, averaging over 23 minutes of ice time per recreation, and main the Sharks in factors. Speak about a vibrant spot.

Earlier rating: 28
Factors proportion: 0.250
Subsequent seven days: vs. PIT (Oct. 28), vs. NJ (Nov. 1), vs. ANA (Nov. 3)

The Canucks have been shockingly dangerous at holding a lead (see: a number of, multi-goal benefits disappeared) throughout their traditionally poor 0-5-2 run to open this season. Vancouver was believed to be on the upswing, stocked with maturing younger expertise, steady goaltending and the suitable veterans. Surprisingly, nothing has added up but.

Earlier rating: 27
Factors proportion: 0.214
Subsequent seven days: @ VGK (Oct. 28), vs. TOR (Oct. 30), @ SJ (Nov. 1), @ VAN (Nov. 3)

John Gibson has been Anaheim’s saving grace for a couple of seasons. It is shocking how typically the Geese nonetheless go away him out to dry. Anaheim is prime three in targets towards (4.50), and Gibson has a below-.900 SV%, however for a crew that has some good expertise total, it is surprising how the Geese cannot provide extra assist to their goaltender.