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Fantasy Hockey Quarter Point Trends and Pretends 9.0 (NHL Power Rankings)

Early trends. What to trust, what to watch out for. Power Rankings

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

We are just over 33% into the 2015-2016 NHL season.


Special Teams.

1.       The NHL scored 1,403 Power Play goals in 2014 and 1,441 Power Play goals in 2013. We are on pace right now to score 1,509.

2.       The Buffalo Sabres were 29th in 2013 on Power Play conversion and 30th in 2014. They are 7th in 2015. So what changed from last season to this season: You have Jack Eichel but he's only netted 4 Power Play Points. The big difference is head coach Dan Bylsma who excelled with the Penguins as they were 8th in 2014 and 1st in 2013. He is very good with the x's and o's of the power play and keeping his team moving.

a.       The Pittsburgh Penguins are now 26th on the power play.

3.       Consistency: The Washington Capitals have been and will continue to be the best Power Play team in the league. They have been in the top 2 for the last 3 years.

4.       The Philadelphia Flyers were in the top 10 in 2014 and 2013 for power play opportunities. They then capitalized on that with Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek but this year they are 21st. Craig Berube's style of gritty hard nosed play is much more prone to drawing penalties than the more spaced out puck moving Dave Hakstol game. The Flyers will see their opportunities decrease as a trend.

5.       The same can be said for Todd McLellan. He did well in San Jose using his movement and talent to create power play opportunities and this has transitioned to Edmonton who was 25th and 15th in previous years and is now 9th. This along with other line tinkering has allowed Taylor Hall to flourish. He currently has 7 power play points and is on pace to revert back to 2011-2012 year when he had 21.

6.       The Sedin twins are both in the top ten in Power Play Points. The Vancouver Canucks are not only the number 1 team in terms of power play opportunities, this is the first time in 3 years they've been in the top 2/3 of the league. This has been an area scrutinized by the organization over the last two years. They worked on converting their chances last year and then creating more this year.

7.       The Bruins are at a great pace right now (30.7%) on the Power Play. Zdeno Chara as an anchor has always boded well but Colin Miller and Tory Krug have stepped it up cycling the puck around while they shuffled up the offense a bit with Brad Marchand spending more time on the second unit and Loui Eriksson and Ryan Spooner filling in well as finishers to Patrice Bergeron setting them up. They are peppering shots during their power plays and making good use of screens and rebounds. The pace is unsustainable but the fundamentals behind their success remain.

a.       The record in one season is the 1977-1978 Montreal Canadiens at 31.88%.

8.       Fun tidbit on Chicago and Patrick Kane. 2013: 9th best conversion rate despite the 21stmost opportunities: Patrick Kane was 16th that year in Power Play Points. 2014: 8thmost opportunities and 20th best conversion rate with NO Chicago player in the top 25 in Power Play Points. 2015: 15th most opportunities and 6th best conversion rate with Patrick Kane 2nd in the league in Power Play Points. This shows the less opportunities they get the better they seem to do on Power Plays. It also shows Patrick Kane is in for a big year.

9.       Teams who have allowed the most Power Play Goals: Boston (22) and Winnipeg (22) and Nashville (21). This is odd as Boston is the top converting Power Play team and Nashville is 7th with Shea Weber (12) and Roman Josi (10) both in the top twelve.  Boston and Winnipeg make sense - they've been short handed the most and 3rd most times, but Nashville has been shorthanded the 8th fewest teams. They make for a favorable matchup if you are looking for power play points.

10.   Shorthanded goals can be a bit of luck. BUT with that said there is one team who consistently scores them: Dallas Stars.

NHL Power Rankings:

Week: 12/7/2015

Bleacher Report

ESPN

Fox Sports

CBS Sports

Average

vs. last week

Anaheim Ducks

20

21

21

20

20.50

23.50

Arizona Coyotes

22

29

19

21

22.75

15.75

Boston Bruins

13

6

9

10

9.50

11.25

Buffalo Sabres

24

23

25

24

24.00

22.50

Calgary Flames

30

22

28

29

27.25

29.25

Carolina Hurricanes

25

24

23

25

24.25

25.50

Chicago Blackhawks

11

14

12

9

11.50

6.50

Colorado Avalanche

26

27

27

27

26.75

27.50

Columbus Blue Jackets

27

28

30

26

27.75

24.75

Dallas Stars

1

3

2

1

1.75

2.00

Detroit Red Wings

8

9

5

11

8.25

14.50

Edmonton Oilers

29

20

24

30

25.75

29.75

Florida Panthers

15

8

14

17

13.50

18.50

Los Angeles Kings

5

2

4

4

3.75

6.25

Minnesota Wild

7

4

10

14

8.75

12.00

Montreal Canadiens

3

5

3

2

3.25

2.25

Nashville Predators

12

25

15

12

16.00

11.50

New Jersey Devils

17

12

13

16

14.50

16.00

New York Islanders

4

10

6

6

6.50

13.25

New York Rangers

6

13

8

5

8.00

5.50

Ottawa Senators

10

7

11

8

9.00

8.50

Philadelphia Flyers

21

11

22

22

19.00

23.75

Pittsburgh Penguins

14

17

16

13

15.00

13.50

San Jose Sharks

19

19

17

15

17.50

9.00

St. Louis Blues

9

18

7

7

10.25

4.00

Tampa Bay Lightning

16

16

18

19

17.25

18.25

Toronto Maple Leafs

28

26

29

28

27.75

27.00

Vancouver Canucks

23

30

26

23

25.50

20.25

Washington Capitals

2

1

1

3

1.75

1.75

Winnipeg Jets

18

15

20

18

17.75

21.00

Some Extra Cheddar:
Around the League:
http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=791546

Some CORSI stats: Josi is a beast:
http://www.tsn.ca/statistically-speaking-possession-and-deployment-1.406058

Oilers surging a bit:
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/dec/7/hall-purcell-help-oilers-beat-sabres-for-3rd-strai/