Power Rankings

TWC Power Rankings 2021: Week 7

Welcome back to the new and improved 2021 TWC Power Rankings!

Here at TWC, we use a statistical model to effectively rank teams on a week to week basis. The model takes into effect winning percentages, CF%, SCF%, HDCF% as well as SV%. Each statistical category is weighed and scored differently, giving each team a unique TWC Score that determines their ranking after each week. The formula puts the highest emphasis on winning percentages over other statistics. All numbers are taken in all situations, to incorporate special teams into the fray.

We got some excellent feedback over the course of last season from our readers as to how we could improve this model moving forward. We have slightly altered the weightings of the statistical categories, but also added a large recency component to make sure that each week the teams that are riding hot streaks are more appropriately demonstrated in the rankings. 

Additionally, due to the 2021 NHL Season realignment, we have broken down teams into their respective divisions while also maintaining their league ranking.

Don’t like where your team is ranked? Unfortunately, they will have to turn it around on the ice, as we take zero personal opinions into effect.

Central Division

RankChangeTeamTeam NameLast WeekRecordTWCScore
Tampa Bay Lightning3-0-014-4-1826
Florida Panthers1-1-113-4-3791
Carolina Hurricanes1-2-013-6-1764.7
Chicago Blackhawks3-1-012-7-4711.8
Nashville Predators3-1-010-11-0667.6
Dallas Stars1-2-06-6-4642.6
Columbus Blue Jackets0-3-18-10-5574.3
Detroit Red Wings2-2-07-14-3556.2

After reigning over the NHL in our past TWC Power Rankings, a team from the Central Division is no longer on top. Even after the Tampa Bay Lightning went 3-0-0 this past week, they were only able to regain the top spot in their divisional ranking rather than overall. The Lightning still had an outstanding week winning two against the Carolina Hurricanes and one against the Dallas Stars. Two of those wins were shutouts, and the defending Stanley Cup Champions appear to be rounding into form.

The Chicago Blackhawks continue their spectacular season after going 3-1-0 last week. They currently sit in third place in the division, but remain only one point back of top spot. They do have a much higher number of games played compared to the other teams in the top four, but still hold a sizeable lead over the fifth place Columbus Blue Jackets.

The big mover in the division would have to be the Nashville Predators, who also went 3-1-0. Things weren’t looking good in the Music City for a while, but the recent play has them back on track. They still have ground to make up, but it’s not nearly as dreadful as it used to be.

East Division

RankChangeTeamTeam NameLast WeekRecordTWCScore
Philadelphia Flyers3-0-011-4-3775
Boston Bruins1-2-012-5-2754.8
New York Islanders2-0-111-6-4753.6
Washington Capitals3-0-112-5-4751.9
Pittsburgh Penguins2-2-011-8-1683.7
New York Rangers1-2-07-9-3621.2
New Jersey Devils1-3-07-8-2606.5
Buffalo Sabres1-2-16-10-3589.8

The Philadelphia Flyers got a huge boost out of their 3-0-0 week moving eleven spots in total, and earned the first spot in their division. The top four teams in the East Division are separated only by a few points in TWCScore, with the Flyers owning the slight edge due to their strong play last week. Even after the three game win streak, the Flyers are only in fourth place (albeit with games in hand). This is a constant battle between five teams in the division, and one of them is going to get left standing in the rain come a few months time if this continues.

The other three teams, being the New York Rangers, New Jersey Devils, and Buffalo Sabres, are all struggling to make up ground against their opponents. Even with games in hand, none of the three teams can’t seem to string together a handful of wins. With other teams continuing to distance themselves, time may have already passed for some of these teams to make a serious move.

North Division

RankChangeTeamTeam NameLast WeekRecordTWCScore
Toronto Maple Leafs2-0-016-4-2841.2
Winnipeg Jets2-0-013-6-1752.1
Edmonton Oilers2-1-014-9-0727.5
Montreal Canadiens0-1-19-6-4677.3
Calgary Flames1-1-110-10-2650.5
Vancouver Canucks0-2-08-14-2542.1
Ottawa Senators1-1-06-15-1535.5

For the first time this season, the number one overall team comes from the North Division. The Toronto Maple Leafs finally take over the top spot in the league after owning the best record for a number of weeks. The Leafs are simply a well structured and balanced team compared to previous iterations. They are getting good goaltending when they need it, depth scoring, all while battling a number of key injuries. Of course we all know the team will be judged on its playoff performance, but so far the team has faced a ton of adversity and sailed through it. For now, they are the best team in the league, no questions about it.

The Montreal Canadiens had the most eventful week of any Canadian team, with the organization cutting ties with Claude Julien. An interesting move just over a quarter way into the season, but after their strong start the Canadiens have slipped hard and fast. 2-5-3 in their last ten, it was clear they needed something different. Will be fascinating to see if they can turn the tide quickly, or else there won’t be much time left to make up ground. A 0-1-1 week wasn’t the type of start Dominique Ducharme was looking for.

West Division

RankChangeTeamTeam NameLast WeekRecordTWCScore
Vegas Golden Knights1-0-012-4-1833.7
Minnesota Wild3-0-012-6-0804.2
Colorado Avalanche2-1-011-6-1756.6
St Louis Blues1-1-011-8-2676
Los Angeles Kings1-1-19-7-4655.4
Arizona Coyotes1-2-09-9-3638.6
San Jose Sharks0-1-07-9-2584.2
Anaheim Ducks0-0-26-10-5578.4

The West Division has gotten a whole lot more interesting over the past few weeks. What looked to be a clear four team split between good and bad has slowly turned into a much closer battle between six teams. The Vegas Golden Knights, Minnesota Wild, St. Louis Blues, and Colorado Avalanche are the top four teams in the standings and our rankings, but the fourth place Avalanche only sits one point ahead of the LA Kings and two ahead of the Arizona Coyotes in the standings. This is drastically different than the last few weeks where the gap between teams was much larger.

The top four teams still have a number of games in hand due to the COVID delays, which means this gap may expand in the next week or so, but the Kings and Coyotes are certainly making things interesting.

Have any suggestions for the TWC Power Rankings for next season? Leave us a comment and let us know!

What are your thoughts? Are you surprised where your team landed this week? Let us know at @wincolumnblog.

All data courtesy of Natural Stat Trick.

Previous Weeks: Week 1| 2 | 3

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