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The Times' Rankings / Top To Bottom

April 11, 2001

No. Team (Record) Comment

1. Colorado (52-16-10-4) Stanley Cup favorite.

2. New Jersey (48-19-12-3) Brodeur's time to shine.

3. Ottawa (48-21-9-4) Success depends on Lalime.

4. Detroit (49-20-9-4) Wings 17-0-2 in last 19 at home.

5. Dallas (48-24-8-2) Peaking at the right time.

6. Philadelphia (43-25-11-3) Cechmanek holds key.

7. Buffalo (46-30-5-1) Could be tough because of Hasek.

8. Pittsburgh (42-28-9-3) Time to see if Mario's return pays off.

9. Washington (41-27-10-4) Must end Pittsburgh hex.

10. St. Louis (43-22-12-5) Needs better goaltending.

11. San Jose (40-27-12-3) Geared up for Blues.

12. Kings (38-28-13-3) Owe playoff berth to Potvin.

13. Edmonton (39-28-12-3) Speed could trouble Dallas.

14. Carolina (38-32-9-3) Closed with rush, but going nowhere.

15. Toronto (37-29-11-5) Limping into postseason.

16. Vancouver (36-28-11-7) On a 2-5-3 skid.

17. Phoenix (35-27-17-3) Ownership, trade distractions costly.

18. Boston (36-30-8-8) Keenan on way out?

19. Nashville (34-36-9-3) Best season not good enough.

20. Calgary (27-36-15-4) Best of rest, which isn't saying much.

21. N.Y. Rangers (33-43-5-1) Hebert not the answer in net.

22. Chicago (29-40-8-5) Stuck in reverse.

23. Columbus (28-39-9-6) Credible inaugural season.

24. Montreal (28-40-8-6) Doomed by injuries.

25. Ducks (25-41-11-5) Charron paid price for terrible season.

26. Minnesota (25-39-13-5) Dull, but competitive first season.

27. Florida (22-38-13-9) Yo, Bure, mix in a little defense.

28. Atlanta (23-45-12-2) Second year as tough as the first.

29. Tampa Bay (24-47-6-5) Khabibulin will help next season.

30. N.Y. Islanders (21-51-7-3) Bad team, man.



* When--Wednesday. * Time--4 PDT.

* TV--Fox Sports Net 2.

* Story line--What, you expected maybe Game 1 of the Devils-Hurricanes to be the pick of the week? The scalding Kings will attempt to do what no team has been able to do in this century--defeat the Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. OK, so it has only been 19 games (17-0-2) in which the Red Wings have been unbeaten at home. But in Detroit, that can seem like forever. If the Kings have one advantage in the best-of-seven series, it's in goal. Felix Potvin has been superb since the Kings acquired him in February for future considerations. Potvin is 13-5-5 with a 1.96 goals-against average and a .919 save percentage as a King. Detroit's two-headed monster of Chris Osgood and Manny Legace hasn't been as sharp as Potvin and could be a sore subject in the playoffs. But the Red Wings have so many other advantages that it's hard to imagine them falling to the Kings in this series.

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