Vendetta’s May 2022 NHL Power Rankings
This will be the final edition of the 2022 NHL power rankings as we head into May for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. If you haven’t checked out the previews, make sure to do so. Go to the NHL tab and give them a read.
Normally this is an Andrew post but this will be just me putting together the 2022 NHL power rankings. The 16 remaining playoff teams are the only ones I will rank so it won’t be a super lengthy post like the one for April. Let’s get right to it.
16: Nashville Predators
Nashville comes in last for the remaining playoff teams for two reasons.
A: Juuse Saros is hurt.
B: They play Colorado in the first round.
Good luck. May as well go home now.
15: Dallas Stars
The Dallas Stars aren’t a bad hockey team but they aren’t a very deep one. The Robertson, Hintz, and Pavelski line is the only line that can score. Dallas is pretty good defensively but I’m not sure we can take them seriously if Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn cash checks while they suck together.
14: Washington Capitals
Alex Ovechkin is still unbelievable. After another 50 goal campaign, let’s just assume that he’s never going to age. Having said that, this team is very flawed. The goaltending has been a major issue all year as Gavin pointed out in his preview. It’s not like the rest of this team is built full of spring chicken either.
13: Los Angeles Kings
Outmanned and outgunned. Look, an overachieving team that doesn’t have Drew Doughty? This is a tough ask. LA is improving and they have some young talent coming through the system. It just feels like an early exit for this team. Adrian Kempe had a really nice year but to ask them to keep pace with this iteration of the Oilers is a tough ask.
12: Pittsburgh Penguins
Pittsburgh has gone cold at the wrong time. Goaltending is a huge question mark. Nobody knows what we’re getting from Tristan Jarry. Sure as hell can’t trust Casey DeSmith. In a first round series against the Rangers, it’s hard not to see them get goalied even if they outplay New York.
11: St. Louis Blues
Dare I say Robert Thomas is a top ten playmaker in the league? Yeah, he’s damn good. So is the rest of that Blues team. I’m just not sure they’re as good at the back end and a guy like Alex Pietrangelo would probably make a huge difference. The series against Minnesota feels like a coin flip. I lean Wild because the Blues while talented lack true star power.
10: New York Rangers
Boy, did the NHL trade deadline make all the difference in the world. Since the additions of Andrew Copp and Frank Vatrano, this is a different hockey team. We already know Artemi Panarin is a star. This team grinds out goals on the power play (3rd in the NHL in PP%). More important, they have the hottest goalie on the planet in Igor Shesterkin. Sometimes that’s all you need.
9: Minnesota Wild
Who knows who is starting in net for the Wild but the addition of Marc-Andre Fluery helps. Cam Talbot has played pissed off ever since and if he goes cold, Fluery is a damn good playoff tested alternative.
This team is damn good. Matt Boldy is a young guy that’s made a difference. Kevin Fiala is playing with his hair on fire. If you haven’t watched Kirill Kaprizov yet, you have made a grave mistake because I’m not sure he’s human.
8: Boston Bruins
The Bruins have something. They have created more than one line that can score. Better yet, the Hall, Haula, and Pastrnak line might be better than the top unit. The Bruins feel like they have momentum. Patrice Bergeron is still a two way monster and the best faceoff guy in the league. The Hampus Lindholm trade has helped more than some realize. This is a damn good hockey team that has a very real chance to win the Cup.
7: Toronto Maple Leafs
I know the Maple Leafs haven’t won anything but it’s getting really hard to ignore this team. Auston Matthews has a legit case to being named the best hockey player alive. His linemate Mitch Marner is damn good too. Jack Campbell seems to be rounding out into form after a shaky middle half of the season. It’s also the best power play unit in the league. They’re going to score goals.
6: Edmonton Oilers
Since Jay Woodcroft took over the Oilers are 27-12-4 on the season. This team is real. Mike Smith has a .921 save percentage post All-Star game. The Evander Kane move has made all the difference in the world. Tyson Barrie is back in as the team’s power play quarterback (why did Dave Tippet ever remove him? Nevermind). We know how insane McDavid and Draisaitl are. I’m buying the Oilers stock.
5: Calgary Flames
I love watching the Flames. This team is damn good. Third in shots and fifth in shots allowed means something, right? The Johnny Hockey, Tkachuk, and Lindholm line is excellent. They don’t miss Mark Giordano at all. Jacob Markstrom has been a top five goalie all year. It’s a team that certainly has a shot.
4: Tampa Bay Lightning
Back to back champs for a reason. We know the Lightning are dangerous. They have some question marks. Can Steven Stamkos continue to play like he’s been possessed by the gods? Will Andrei Vasilevskiy remember how to play hockey again? The Atlantic division is a gauntlet. I’m not sure they’re not the worst team in the division. This is no slam dunk but obviously a stupid good team.
3: Carolina Hurricanes
It’s the best penalty killing unit in the league. Antti Raanta being the game one starter is worrysome. Look, Carolina has been dangerous all year. Probably the best coached and best defensive team in the dance. The offense isn’t a problem. Sebastian Aho is that dude and Teuvo Teravainen is truly healthy this go around.
2: Colorado Avalanche
I still have the Avalanche as my Stanley Cup pick. It’s hard not to. After a franchise record season, the time is now to close the deal. There is nothing more to say. They’re too talented to not get it done.
1: Florida Panthers
Having said that, it’s disrespectful to not have the Florida Panthers first at this point. Yes, Bob is vulnerable in net but they score and score, and score more. Florida not only won the President’s Trophy but also sport a stupid +94 goal differential. Florida has been the best team all year and deserve this spot. Simple as that.