The Carolina Hurricanes will win the Presidents’ Trophy.
James Neal completes his transformation from goat to GOAT.
And the San Jose Sharks (0-82-0) will put all their hopes into the draft lottery.
That’s right, kids. The best predictor of future behaviour is this past week’s behaviour.
It’s our annual NHL Power Rankings: Extremely Small Sample Size Edition, in which we use the trends of hockey’s first seven days to wildly and confidently extrapolate season-long conclusions.
All 31 teams are ranked in order of the power they’ve showed since Opening Night. The write-ups peer into the future with the assumption that Week 1’s trends are only bound to continue through April.
Please, don’t waste energy disputing the law of averages.
It’s impressive that Tuukka Rask’s .937 save percentage holds up through April, but it can’t top tandem mate Jaroslav Halak’s 1.000.
A resurgent James Reimer registers a sparkling 41-0-0 record with a .940 save percentage, cementing himself as the greatest backup goalie to ever walk the earth.
Reilly Smith and William Karlsson break the NHL record for most shorthanded points by a pair of teammates when they amass 55 apiece. This leads to opposing teams declining power plays in the post-season.
Mika Zibanejad’s 328-point campaign (164 goals, 164 assists) marks the greatest individual season in the history of team sport and leads the Rangers to the Presidents’ Trophy.
A triumphant end to the longest playoff drought in the NHL sparks a debate in Buffalo over whether to erect a statue of Ralph Krueger (55-0-27), Rasmus Dahlin (137 points) or Victor Olofsson (82 goals).
Nikita Zadorov leads all defencemen with a plus-164 rating and can no longer be ignored in the Norris voting.
Doug Armstrong signs off on $1.0935 billion worth of contract extensions by the end of the regular season.
James Neal’s change of scenery pays off with an 164-goal showing, Mike Smith wins every game he starts despite a .892 save percentage and a playoff berth assures Connor McDavid of a Hart Trophy.
John Gibson’s perfect record and .970 save percentage lock up the Vezina for him and the Jack Adams for new coach Dallas Eakins.
Auston Matthews’ 102 goals and zero assists make him the greatest Cy Young winner of all time. Equally impressive: A 41-goal breakout campaign by Frederik Gauthier.
Steven Stamkos calls out his team 27 times as the Lightning’s 41 standings points mark a drastic 87-point drop-off from 2018-19.
Matt Duchene’s 164-assist performance snaps Wayne Gretzky’s single-season record and compensates nicely for the fact he fails to score a goal for his new club.
13. Calgary Flames
Milan Lucic amasses a monstrous 55 fights and 713 penalty minutes. Cam Talbot never does get to start.
Anthony Mantha’s franchise-record-breaking run to 137 goals helps him lock up the runner-up spot to Neal’s Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy by Christmas.
Travis Konecny’s agent begs to renegotiate with Flyers brass after his 22-year-old explodes for a 246-point campaign.
The trade serves Radko Gudas well as the hard-nosed defender posts a career-high 41 points and career-low 41 penalty minutes.
17. Winnipeg Jets
The Winnipeg Jets’ blue line depth gets tested as they lose 81 defencemen to trade, injury, free agency or personal reasons.
Keith Kinkaid never does play a minute for the Montreal Canadiens, but his tweet game remains (fire emoji).
Drew Doughty chirps Matthew Tkachuk through the media 41 times — and we’re still not bored of it.
The Penguins will attempt to trade Jack Johnson 41 times this season. Sidney Crosby takes out his frustrations by dropping the gloves 57 times, setting a new career-high.
Devon Toews outscores Jonathan Toews by a mellow 57 points.
22. Florida Panthers
Mike Hoffman’s noteworthy 66.7 shooting percentage confirms what his mother always suspected. He’s the most accurate player to ever pick up a hockey stick.
The Blackhawks play all 82 games in Prague.
24. Dallas Stars
Joe Pavelski’s new team and his former team combine for a mere 10 victories all season, as Dallas and San Jose disappoint with a combined 10-154 record on the season.
When neither half of the Joonas Korpisalo–Elvis Merzlikins tandem can muster a save percentage greater than .860, a van full of Blue Jackets fans hatch a plan to drive down to Sunrise and kidnap Sergei Bobrovsky.
26. Arizona Coyotes
Darcy Kuemper turns in a spectacular 1.54 goals-against average and .945 save percentage … and never wins a game.
Alumnus Roberto Luongo crafts 27 hilarious Photoshops to the tune of 113.4K retweets.
— Strombone (@strombone1) October 1, 2019
Blake Coleman’s right wrist scores 41 goals, singlehandedly.
29. Minnesota Wild
The Minnesota Wild’s top two scorers running away are both defencemen: Ryan Suter (123 points) and Matt Dumba (82 points).
30. Ottawa Senators
Pierre Dorion orchestrates 41 small trades in which the other team retains salary.
31. San Jose Sharks
Barclay Goodrow co-leads the Sharks in goals with 20. Erik Karlsson leads the Sharks in newborn babies with 20.