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Sharks on top of first regular season NHL Power Rankings

Scott Cullen
10/15/2013 5:54:26 PM
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The San Jose Sharks have stormed out of the gate and have taken top spot in the TSN.ca NHL Power Rankings for the first update of the regular season.

It's still very early, so there is a lot of room for statistical fluctuation, but the Sharks' dominance, which includes a league-best goal differential (plus-17) and shot differential (plus-19.6 per game) makes them a worthy candidate for the number one ranking, just ahead of the St. Louis Blues and Colorado Avalanche, the two other unbeatens.

The Avalanche are one of the major surprises early, ranking 26th in the preseason, but up to third in the season's first update, thanks largely to sensational goaltending.

Other teams that made big moves up into the Top 10 include the Toronto Maple Leafs, going from 16 to eight, despite missing some key players including right winger David Clarkson, and the Calgary Flames, who vaulted from 28 to nine, after a 3-0-2 start to the season.

Among those to fall early, the Philadelphia Flyers have dropped from 13 to 25, after a slow start already cost head coach Peter Laviolette his job and injuries have taken a couple of top six forwards out of the lineup.

The Ottawa Senators have surrendered an appalling 43 shots per game and that contributed to their fall from six to 23.

As for the rest of the Canadian teams, the Montreal Canadiens moved up from 10 to five, on the strength of improving young forwards and the Winnipeg Jets, getting big contributions from newcomers Michael Frolik and Jacob Trouba, jumped from 23 to 12.

The Vancouver Canucks have one regulation win in six tries, combined with a couple of notable lineup absences, that dropped them from 12 to 17 and the Edmonton Oilers, with problems throughout the lineup, fell from 24 to 29.

As noted, it's early, so there is room for drastic change by the time next week's rankings roll around.

Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook.




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