A 12-game winning streak has landed the Boston Bruins on top of the TSN.ca NHL Power Rankings, overtaking the St. Louis Blues.
The Bruins have been consistently among the top teams for the past few months, but their current run has taken them to the top, despite not having a strength of schedule deficit compared to the Western Conference powers.
Moving up this week, the Pittsburgh Penguins go from nine to six. Even though they have just one regulation win in the past six games, the Penguins also got wingers Chris Kunitz and James Neal back from injuries and that provides a relative boost compared to last week's ranking.
The never-say-die Detroit Red Wings are still hanging around in the playoff race, thanks largely to Gustav Nyquist, who has seven goals in the past six games, to help Detroit go 4-1-1 and jump to seventh in the Eastern Conference. The Red Wings, still depleted by injuries, are up from 24 to 21.
Heading the other way, the Toronto Maple Leafs have dropped five straight as goaltender James Reimer has struggled to fill in for injured starter Jonathan Bernier and the Leafs don't play a structured enough game to get by without great goaltending. As a result, they sink from 17 to 22.
Both the Carolina Hurricanes and Ottawa Senators dropped three spots, to 25 and 26, respectively, not through any great failings of their own, but the Detroit Red Wings, Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames all performed better and/or got healthier.
Among other Canadian clubs, the Montreal Canadiens are up one spot, to 12, and the Winnipeg Jets are up two spots to 17. The Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames are both up a couple of places, to 23 and 24, respectively.
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.