The holiday season is just about wrapped up, the Winter Classic has been played, and it is officially a new decade in the NHL.
Let’s take a look at how the top ten teams in the NHL stack up.
10. Toronto Maple Leafs:
Since firing Head Coach Mike Babcock, Toronto has looked like a different team and has experienced a noticeable improvement in their record because of it.
Going 2-0-1 this past week with wins over the Devils, and Wild, the Maple Leafs have boosted their record to 22-14-15, including a record of 8-1-1 in their last ten games.
If Toronto finds a way to improve their defense this team could be extremely difficult to beat considering the fact that the Maple Leafs are tied with Washington for most goals for in the league with 146.
Toronto starts off the New Year tonight with a game in Winnipeg against the Jets at 8:00 PM ET.
9. Vegas Golden Knights:
Like Toronto, Vegas also got off to a shaky start this season, however have finally found themselves in first place in the Pacific Division with a record of 22-15-6 through their first 43 games played.
This week saw the Golden Knights go 2-1-0 with wins over division foes Arizona, and Anaheim.
Vegas hosts the Philadelphia Flyers tonight in their first game of the decade at 10:00 PM ET as they look to win three consecutive.
8. Dallas Stars:
Things are certainly heating up in Dallas as they went 3-0-0 this week improving their record to 6-3-1 in their last ten games.
Currently tied for second in the Central Division with the Colorado Avalanche, the Stars defeated the Avalanche in a shootout 3-2, the Coyotes 4-2, and finished off the week with a thrilling 4-2 come from behind victory over Nashville in the Winter Classic in front of over 85,000 spectators.
With the second least goals against in the league, Dallas has proven to be an incredible defensive team, all the Stars need to do is figure out how to find the back of the net as they have the least goals for of any team in a playoff spot in the league.
7. Colorado Avalanche:
The Avalanche struggled this week to say the least, collecting just one point out of a possible six total.
Colorado fell at home to both Minnesota, and Winnipeg in regulation, with a 3-2 shootout loss to Dallas in between.
With the amount of playoff worthy teams in the Western Conference, Colorado will certainly look to shake off this week and get back on track as they host the St. Louis Blues tonight at 9:30 PM ET.
6. Carolina Hurricanes:
Currently in the first Wild Card Spot in the Eastern Conference, this Hurricanes team has shown glimpses of last year’s team that advanced all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Going 2-1-0 this past week, Carolina fell to the Rangers 5-3, however bounced back with impressive wins over both Washington, and Montreal 6-4, and 3-1 respectively.
The Hurricanes will take on the Capitals again tomorrow at 7:30 PM ET at home.
5. New York Islanders:
The Islanders had another solid week as they improve to 6-3-1 in their last ten games as they currently sit in second place in the Metropolitan Division.
After falling 5-2 to Chicago, the Islanders defeated the Wild 3-1, and the Capitals 4-3, both on the road.
New York is playing exceptional defense, on top of having one of the best goalie duos in the league of Greiss, and Varlamov as they have allowed the fewest goals against in the league of 100.
Hosting the New Jersey Devils tonight at 7:00 PM ET, the Islanders look to win three consecutive and inch closer to the top of the division.
4. Pittsburgh Penguins:
Despite being riddled with injury, after injury, the Penguins continuously find a way to win games.
Going 3-0-0 this week, Pittsburgh defeated the Predators 5-2, and 6-4, along with the Senators 5-2 improving their record to 24-11-4, including 8-2-0 in their last ten.
Pittsburgh has been dominant at home with a record of 16-4-2, which they will look to keep as they take on the Sharks tonight at 7:00 PM ET in Pittsburgh.
3. Washington Capitals:
Although Washington still sits first in the NHL, the Capitals have struggled as of late going 5-5-0 in their last ten, including currently sitting on consecutive losses to the Hurricanes, and Islanders.
This is completely a normal rough patch of their season, which every team goes through, however Washington must turn it around quickly as they are just one point ahead of both Boston, and St. Louis in the standings.
The Capitals start the New Year with a game on the road against the Hurricanes tomorrow at 7:30 PM ET, who as previously stated defeated them 6-4.
2. St. Louis Blues:
St. Louis is playing impressive hockey as of late.
This week saw the Blues earn back to back wins over Winnipeg, one 5-4 in overtime, the other 4-1, and then fall to the Coyotes 3-1 on the road.
The Blues are now 8-2-0 in their last ten games, and sit eight points ahead of the Avalanche, and Stars for first place in the Central Division.
St. Louis will actually in fact take on the Avalanche tonight at 9:30 in Colorado, in what is a highly anticipated division matchup.
1. Boston Bruins:
After a few sluggish weeks, the Bruins are starting to get back on track as one of the best teams in the league.
With an overall record of 24-7-10, Boston sits just one point behind the Capitals for the first place in the NHL.
The most impressive stat about this team is their home record of 14-1-8, and the fact that they have won 22 of their 24 wins in regulation.
Going 2-0-1 this week, the Bruins defeated Buffalo 3-0 on the road, and 3-2 at home, however fell to the Devils 3-2 in a shootout; Boston is 0-6 in shootouts this season.
Boston hosts the Columbus Blue Jackets tonight at 7:00 PM ET as they look to start off the year with another home win.
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