NHL Power Rankings: Lightning bolt back to top while Predators surge to No. 2

There’s a little shakeup in the power rankings this week as the Blues hit an adversity patch and fall from the top spot down to No. 3. Taking their place, the Lightning move back to No. 1 while Predators surge into the second spot.

The Kings and Canadiens are also trending the right way, while the Islanders and Flames fall back.

Here is the complete breakdown of Sporting News’ NHL power rankings for Week 9.

PREVIOUS POWER RANKINGS: Preseason | Week 1​ | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 
Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8

NHL Power Rankings 8.0

1. Tampa Bay Lightning

19-6-2, 40 pts (last week: 2)

Back on top of the rankings, and the league standings. Team depth on full display Tuesday, ripping red-hot Islanders 6-2 with secondary goal scorers potting all six.

2. Nashville Predators

18-7-3, 39 pts (last week: 6)

Jumped into top five for first time this season. Also, now leading Central Division after 13-2-1 run, which includes current three-game win streak.

MORE: As NHL embraces fancy stats, Corsi isn’t as predictive as it once was

3. St. Louis Blues

18-8-2, 38 pts (last week: 1)

Snapped three-game losing skid with 4-3 win over Canadiens on Tuesday.

4. Winnipeg Jets

17-7-4, 38 pts (last week: 4)

Stubbed toe with bad loss to Red Wings Tuesday, but remain one of league’s biggest surprises and best teams. Blake Wheeler with 11 points last five games, leads NHL with 29 assists.

MORE: How a Drew Doughty-Erik Karlsson free agency would alter the NHL

5. Columbus Blue Jackets

17-10-1, 35 pts (last week: 5)

Not only did Blue Jackets lose first-place game to Devils Tuesday — on home ice — but John Tortorella pulled a scheduled off day and made it a practice day Wednesday.

6. Toronto Maple Leafs

17-10-1, 35 pts (last week: 3)

Just finished three-game trek to Western Canada and now play four of next six on road.

MORE: Maple Leafs climb Forbes’ most-valuable list

7. New Jersey Devils

16-7-4, 36 pts (last week: 9)

Followed terrible 5-0 road loss in Phoenix with a terrific road win in Columbus to take over first place in Metro. Did you see that Nico Hischier pass to Taylor Hall Tuesday?

8. Los Angeles Kings

18-8-3, 39 pts (last week: 14)

Have a league-high 10 road wins already. Won sixth straight overall on Tuesday as Marian Gaborik scored 400th career goal and 800th point.

9. Pittsburgh Penguins

15-11-3, 33 pts (last week: 8)

Tristan Jarry holding his own while filling in for injured Matt Murray. Evgeni Malkin back in lineup, though hit two posts in 4-3 loss to Rangers on Tuesday.

10. Vegas Golden Knights

17-9-1, 35 pts (last week: 10)

Fourth-highest scoring team in the league despite middling power play numbers.

11. Washington Capitals

16-11-1, 33 pts (last week: 12)

Alex Ovechkin keeps adding notches to his belt. Now 20th all-time in goals scored. Leads NHL with 20, so far, this season.

12. New York Rangers

15-10-2, 32 pts (last week: 13)

Winners of 12 of their last 15. Overcame Henrik Lundqvist illness and Mika Zibanejad concussion to beat Pens on the road Tuesday.

13. New York Islanders

16-9-2, 34 pts (last week: 7)

Won eight of last 11. Also lost two of last three and were drubbed by Lightning on Tuesday.

14. Dallas Stars

16-11-1, 33 pts (last week: 17)

Solid special teams, good puck possession, excellent on face offs. Stars worked their way back into a playoff spot.

15. Vancouver Canucks

14-10-4, 32 pts (last week: 18)

Now both Sedins have 1,000 career points; and Jacob Markstrom finally recorded first NHL shutout on Tuesday.

16. San Jose Sharks

14-10-2, 32 pts (last week: 11)

Joe Thornton was pretty fired up about his fight with Tom Wilson the other night, huh? Pretty lucky he wasn’t suspended for that hit on T.J. Oshie, though.

17. Montreal Canadiens

13-13-3, 29 pts (last week: 26)

Carey Price is 5-1-0 and allowed 10 goals in six starts since return to lineup. How about that ten-goal outburst against Red Wings Saturday?

18. Chicago Blackhawks

12-10-5, 29 pts (last week: 16)

Injury to Corey Crawford is huge blow. Welcome to the hot seat Anton Forsberg.

19. Minnesota Wild

13-11-3, 29 pts (last week: 20)

Another team in the mix, riding some very strong special teams play.

20. Boston Bruins

12-9-4, 28 pts (last week: 22)

Low-scoring team continues to find a way to remain in the hunt. PK has been outstanding.

21. Calgary Flames

14-12-1, 29 pts (last week: 15)

Falling like a rock. Being the team the Flyers snap winless skid against doesn’t help.

22. Detroit Red Wings

11-12-5, 27 pts (last week: 19)

Humiliated by Montreal Saturday night, Red Wings bounced back to stun the Jets Tuesday.

23. Carolina Hurricanes

11-10-5, 25 pts (last week: 21)

Noah Hanifin’s goal with two seconds left in overtime Saturday was a highlight.

24. Edmonton Oilers

11-14-2, 24 pts (last week: 25)

Starting to score again. Now, must keep puck out of own net in the absences of Cam Talbot and Adam Larsson.

25. Ottawa Senators

9-10-6, 25 pts (last week: 23)

Weak special teams, poor defensively. Plenty of issues here.

26. Colorado Avalanche

12-12-2, 26 pts (last week: 24)

Three-game skid as Avs take step backwards.

27. Anaheim Ducks

11-11-6, 28 pts (last week: 27)

Fourth-worst offensive team in NHL. Injuries play major role in that. Adam Henrique trying to change that.

28. Philadelphia Flyers

9-11-7, 25 pts (last week: 29)

Snapped ten-game winless skid, but two more injuries necessitated two more call ups from AHL.

29. Florida Panthers

10-13-4, 24 pts (last week: 28)

Oh boy. Another Roberto Luongo injury means James Reimer (3.67 GAA, .892 save percentage) is No. 1 in goal.

30. Buffalo Sabres

7-17-4, 18 pts (last week: 30)

League must be thrilled that Sabres are showcased in NHL Classic this year, eh?

31. Arizona Coyotes

7-18-5, 19 pts (last week: 31)

Impressive 5-0 shutout win over Devils Saturday. Scott Wedgewood’s revenge.

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