2021 Prezidential NHL Power Rankings: Week 13

NHL Power Ratings

The National Hockey League enters Week 13 of the 2021 NHL season, which means that most teams are down to their last 10-12 games of the regular season. This week’s Prezidential Power Rankings offer a quick betting snippet on Prez’s top-15 teams, complete with a list of all NHL teams from No. 1 to 31.

Stay on top of the latest NHL updates direct from Las Vegas!

1. Colorado Avalanche
Previous ranking: 1

Although, at the time of writing this (1 hour before trade deadline is over), the Avs have done nothing of consequence, they are still the best team in hockey right now. Sure, they lost 8-3 to Minnesota, but that was a bad spot for them and they bounced back to win their next two games. This is the #1 scoring team in hockey and the 3rd best defensive team. It doesn’t get much better than that, plus they have a top 10 power play unit and a top-6 penalty kill. They have great puck moving defenseman, great goaltending and an absolute super star in McKinnon. This team is ready to roll, but I do think they will have trouble getting by the Knights in the playoffs.

2. Tampa Bay Lightning
Previous ranking: 2

Tampa Bay is only 2-2 their last 4 games, but when you can say only in that spot, you know how good this team is. They are so well built with guys that can score, can check and play defense and they have the best goalie in all of hockey. The Lightening are the 3rd-best scoring team in the league and the 5th-best defensive team. They also have a top 10 power play and penalty kill unit and are the current Cup champs. Put all that together and now add Savard who they picked up in a trade with the Blue Jackets and this team just got even better.

3. Toronto Maple Leafs
Previous ranking: 3

This Leaf team is for real and they just got a whole lot better at the trade deadline. Are you kidding: young stars like Nylander, Matthews, Marner and even Hyman coupled with big time hall of fame veterans in Tavares, Spezza and Thornton and rock solid defense with Riley, Brodie and Muzzin and have the makings of a Cup contender. Now they added Foligno and boast four ex-captains and some unbelievable leadership in the dressing room. They are the No. 5 offensive team and the No. 7 defensive team and it looks like they have their goaltending sorted out. This team is light years better than anyone in their division.

4. Las Vegas Golden Knights
Previous ranking: 4

This power poll is based on current form and not necessarily who will win the Cup. Why do I say that now, because I think although Vegas are the 4th-best team in the league, I think they can beat the three teams above when the playoffs start. Why? Because this is the fast team in hockey and can roll out four speed lines and come at you in waves and waves. Over a 7-game series, they are going to tire out the other teams who just won’t be able to keep up. Plus, they have amazing goaltending and can roll out two big time keepers. The Knights are a top-10 offensive team, but more importantly they are #1 on defense and that will bode well when the playoffs begin. I really like the make-up of this team, but they could still use another big time goal scorer. I was shocked they didn’t go hard after Taylor Hall.

5. Carolina Hurricanes
Previous ranking: 5

I love this hockey team and enjoy watching them play. They are so well balanced, as they have scoring like the Leafs and toughness like the Bruins. They have great goaltending a coach that is coming into his own and can roll out four rock solid lines. The Canes boast the 4th-best defense in the league and the 10th-best offense and have sat in the top position on power plays all year. Plus, they get a lot of power plays which will help them in the playoffs. This team might be a year away from the Cup, but I would not be blown away if they beat Tampa Bay and Florida and we see them in the semi-finals.

6. New York Islanders
Previous ranking: 8

This is the first change since last week, as the Islanders moved up 2 spots and most importantly, I now have them better than their in-division rivals the Capitals. How can you not, as they and the Caps were so close and now, they added two solid players, including a goal scorer from the Devils. This team will be so hard to beat over a 7-game series. They are going to keep most offenses in check, play many low scoring games and seem to usually be one-goal ahead when the final buzzer ends. Last week, I told you they needed a scorer and they addressed that by picking up Kyle Palmieri. They are a real cup-contender and I think will likely make it to the final four.

7. Florida Panthers
Previous ranking: 6

It is such a shame this team is a one-trick pony, but what a pony Barkov is. He might be the best player in the league that no one talks about. Florida is for real and have been so consistent all year. The issue is they sit outside of the top-10 in both scoring and goals against and when they get to the playoffs, Barkov will be shut down. They just picked up Sam Bennet from the Flames and he will make a good addition, but he is not the secondary scoring they will need. Right now, I think they are the 7th-best team in hockey, but I do not see a long playoff run. I will not be surprised if they are out in first round. They more than any team need to win their division and hope that the Hurricanes and Lightening beat the crap out of each other. They might be the 7th-best team in the league, but they are only the 3rd-best team in their division.

8. Washington Capitals
Previous ranking: 7

This is a veteran team that can score with anyone in the league. They are the 2nd-highest scoring team in the league and that includes playing defensive minded teams like the Bruins and Islanders. This team literally just put eight goals up against Boston which might happen once a decade. The problem is their defense which is in the bottom half of the league. It is all good and dandy to outscore your opponents in the regular season, but their lack of defense is going to cost them when the playoffs begin. This team could be had and I would not be surprised if they don’t get out of the first round. But as for now, I have them as the 8th-best team in hockey.

9. Pittsburgh Penguins
Previous ranking: 10

I am impressed with this veteran-laden team, as they just keep winning and keep getting better and better as the season progresses. Now they just added Jeff Carter from the Kings, a versatile forward that brings even more veteran leadership and goal scoring power to the Pens. Even though, I don’t think this team is very deep in talent, they find themselves 4th in the league in scoring. Like the Capitals, it is their defense and goaltending that worry me and should concern them. I am surprised they didn’t pick up a really good stay-at-home defensemen at the trade deadline. This team is not going on a big playoff run, but as of now, I have them as the 9th-best team in hockey.

10. Winnipeg Jets
Previous ranking: 11

This is the almost the exact write up as last week and there is no real reason to change it. They did move up one spot in the power poll and more importantly leap frogged the Oilers and that is just because they are better built then Edmonton. I love this team, their grit, their speed and especially their goaltending. They have veterans and youth, leaders and followers and a great coach. They are a top-10 team in scoring, but also find themselves in the middle of the pack in defense. They remind me a lot of the Hurricanes, as they can score, have speed and also are the toughest team in the North Division. They are laden with veteran talent as well and have a great coach. This team just won’t make a long playoff run, because of their weak defense and shame on them for not addressing it properly at the trade deadline.

11. Edmonton Oilers
Previous ranking: 9

How long is the Oiler window going to remain open? Can you imagine a team with McDavid and Draisaitl never winning a Stanley Cup? It honestly could happen as they just can’t seem to get consistent secondary scoring and their defense and goaltending are mediocre at best. I really do like this team and they could come out of their division, but it is more likely the lose in the 1st round to win or the 2nd round to the Leafs. Think about this: they have the two best point guys in hockey and are not even in the top-10 in offense. Shame on the GM for not building this team correctly. The Leafs have Matthews and Mariner and still have JT, Nylander, Hyman, Foligno, Spezza and Thornton. Name one good player after Edmonton’s big two and don’t say Hopkins or Yamamoto (as they are just okay). So, you would think okay, they are not balanced offensively, so maybe they spent their money on defense. Well, they didn’t. Darnel Nurse is their No. 1 defenseman and after him and Larson, no-one can name their next four guys. This is one badly built team and are only in our top-10 because of two players.

12. Minnesota Wild
Previous ranking: 12

The Wild sit outside the top 10 in both defense and offense and that is simply not good enough. They are a tough team that skates fast and can keep up with anyone. But I do believe the 11 teams I have ranked above them would beat them in a 7-game series. This team is going to be a great team in the years to come, but are not going to content this season.

13. Nashville Predators
Previous ranking: 16

This is our biggest jump of the week and why not, as the Preds have been absolutely rolling of late, have turned their season around and now find themselves in a playoff spot. They have won eight of their last ten games, including beating the teams they have to in the Blackhawks and Stars. They have one of if not the best defensemen in all of hockey in Yossi, a good goalie and forwards that can score, but not enough. This team is only in the middle of the pack on defense and literally the 5th-worst scoring team in the league. However, that is over the entire season and in their last 12-15 games have really turned it around and are making a big push. I don’t see this team doing anything in the playoffs, but as of now, they are the 13th-best team in hockey.

14. Arizona Coyotes
Previous ranking: 18

This team is a disaster one night, getting only 14 shots on goal and then a juggernaut the next. With that said, this team is only in our top-15 because teams below them suck more. They are in the bottom half of the league in every important statistic and you would think this team was good on defense, well they are not. Saying they have no scoring depth would be kind, given they are not even top heavy in scoring. They literally have no goal scorers outside of an old Phil Kessel, yet they keep winning of late. I don’t know if it is with smoke and mirrors or amazing coaching, but this team currently is the 14th-best team in hockey.

15. Boston Bruins
Previous ranking: 15

They suck, they are good, then they suck, then they score seven goals to beat the Pens and then give up eight to the Caps. This Bruins team should be pissing off most of their fans. They have scorers up and down their line-up, yet are in the middle of the pack in scoring. The names Bergeron and Pasternak have barely been spoken about this year and their goaltending has been just okay. They did just pick up Taylor Hall who is one of the best pure goal scorers in hockey (albeit not this year). The problem with this team is their goaltending and defense and you can see it on the ice, as they are just a mess. If they weren’t the big bad Boston Bruins, I would have rated lower, but I have to respect the talent and veteran leadership on this squad.

16. New York Rangers
Previous ranking: 18

17. St. Louis Blues
Previous ranking: 17

18. Dallas Stars
Previous ranking: 20

19. Montreal Canadiens
Previous ranking: 13

20. Chicago Blackhawks
Previous ranking: 21

21. San Jose Sharks
Previous ranking: 26

22. Philadelphia Flyers
Previous ranking: 17

23. Columbus Blue Jackets
Previous ranking: 22

24. Vancouver Canucks
Previous ranking: 23

25. Los Angeles Kings
Previous ranking: 24

26. Calgary Flames
Previous ranking: 19

27. New Jersey Devils
Previous ranking: 27

28. Ottawa Senators
Previous ranking: 28

29. Anaheim Ducks
Previous ranking: 29

30. Detroit Red Wings
Previous ranking: 30

31. Buffalo Sabres
Previous ranking: 31

Puck Time

Tune into Puck Time on WagerTalk TV Monday through Friday during the regular season for free NHL picks and predictions. Andrew McInnis, Carmine Bianco and a rotating panel of expert hockey handicappers go over the NHL card from a betting perspective and handicap the action on the ice.

**************************************************

Looking for more free sports picks and sports betting tips?

  • Latest Betting Odds and Public Action: Vegas lines updated in real time, including who the public is betting on.
  • Last Minute Handicapping Advice: Check out our extensive library of handicapping tips and advice from professional Vegas handicappers (we also recommend taking the time to look over our sports betting tips video library)
  • Want an expert opinion? Check out the latest Free Sports Picks and Best Bets from our team of expert sports handicappers.

Make sure to bookmark all the above!