|NHL Power Rankings, 1/27||01.26.10 at 10:30 pm ET|
No changes among the six-pack atop or the five at the bottom of our rankings, but plenty of shuffling in the middle of the pack as the fight for playoff spots begins in earnest.
1. (1) 35-10-8 The Sharks bring a five-game winning streak into a super elite contest against the Blackhawks Thursday. They also have outscored the opposition 26-7 during the five wins. Get ready, Hawks.
3. (3) 34-12-6 Thoughts of being a legitimate Stanley Cup contender are growing in D.C., as the Caps have won seven straight. Alex Ovechkin had a nine-game points streak — with seven goals and 13 assists — end in a 7-2 win on Long Island Tuesday.
4. (4) 34-16-1 The Devils managed to end an 0-for-23 stretch on the power play during a 4-2 win over the Islanders Saturday. Zach Parise ended a five-game goal-scoring drought and now has three goals in his last two games.
5. (5) 30-14-7 Say what you want about the Bruins struggles, but the Sabres went 1-3-1 during a West Coast trip last week, a poorer showing than the B’s 1-1-1 trek through California. Hey — it’s something.
7. (8) 32-18-2 OK, we were slow to catch on. But it’s a bit surprising to see Henrik Sedin now leading the league in scoring. The Canucks have won five straight, and Sedin has contributed four goals and eight assists during the winning streak. Yeah, that’s good.
8 . (9) 33-20-1 The Penguins showed that when push comes to shove, they can still grind out some tough wins, such as a 2-1 victory in Philadelphia Saturday. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury returned after missing four games with a finger injury to make 28 saves in a 4-2 victory over the Rangers Monday.
13. (13) 29-21-4 A prior weakness has become a strength, as Senators goalie Brian Elliott was named the NHL’s First Star for the week that ended Sunday. Elliott went 4-0, including a pair of wins against the Bruins, while posting a 1.25 goals-against and a .957 save percentage.
23. (25) 23-21-8 Disappointing second-year forward Patrick Berglund ended a 13-game goal-less steak with a tally against Calgary Monday. A resurgent effort by Berglund could help the Blues’ chances for getting in the playoff mix.
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