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Helene Elliott's NHL rankings

Maple Leafs earn the top spot, and the Kings move up to No. 5. The Ducks go from the bottom to No. 26.

October 18, 2010

Through Monday's games

Rank; Team; Record; (last week's ranking)

1. Toronto; 4-0-1; Maple Leafs finally lose one, and, of course, they blame the officiating. Hold off on that Stanley Cup parade. (2)

2. Dallas; 4-1-0; Brad Richards (two goals, 10 points) leading the way for Stars (6).

3. Washington; 4-1-0; Alexander Ovechkin (four goals, eight points) and rookie goalie Michal Neuvirth (2.16, .930) start strong. Penalty killers are 21 for 21. (9)

4. Nashville; 3-0-1; You never know how the Predators keep doing it, but they're always competitive. (12)

5. Kings; 3-1-0; Jonathan Quick's goals-against average is 0.97. That's not a typo. Save percentage is a sizzling .963. (14)

6. Detroit; 3-1-1; A salute to Kirk Maltby, who retired last week. An honorable pest. (1)

7. Atlanta; 3-2-0; Thrashers finish tough West Coast trip with rally to beat Sharks. Anthony Stewart leads team with four goals (16).

8. Chicago; 4-2-1; Marian Hossa is early league leader in goals (seven) and points (11). Patrick Sharp (six goals) is off to good start too. (19)

9. Pittsburgh; 4-3-0; Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury has struggled early. Sidney Crosby has been slowed, reportedly by a hip problem. (24).

10. Tampa Bay; 4-1-0; New Coach Guy Boucher is motivating his troops to a good start. (8).

11. Montreal; 3-1-1; Canadiens' power play was one for 17 in first five games. (23).

12. N.Y. Islanders; 3-1-2; Giant killers take down Maple Leafs. They'll be tough to play against, as coaches like to say, but not likely to make playoffs. (25)

13. St. Louis; 2-1-2; Jaroslav Halak and Ty Conklin have been a solid goaltending duo, despite OT loss to Chicago. (7)

14. Colorado; 4-2-0; Winger Chris Stewart (five goals, seven points) makes an impact. And nice brother act with Anthony of Atlanta. (13)

15. Philadelphia; 2-2-1; Flyers' power play (two for 22) needs to get going. Defensemen could be helping more. (5)

16. Boston; 2-1-0; Early returns are good on trade for Nathan Horton (three goals, five points). (18).

17. Columbus; 2-2-0; Paging Mr. Nash, Mr. Rick Nash. Please report to the Blue Jackets' score sheet. He has one goal in four games. (20)

18. N.Y. Rangers; 1-2-1; Injuries to Marian Gaborik (finger) and Chris Drury (finger) will test their depth. Or lack thereof. (11)

19. Edmonton; 2-2-0; Oilers will go as far as Nikolai Khabibulin carries them. Rookie forward Magnus Paajarvi looks good. (3)

20. Vancouver; 2-2-1; Backup goalie Cory Schneider gets them a win over Carolina. They need more scoring from non-Sedins. (15).

21. Florida; 2-2-0; Goalie Tomas Vokoun (1.26 goals-against, .952 save percentage) is an early standout. (27)

22. Calgary; 2-2-0; Averaging two goals per game won't get them back into the playoffs. (21)

23. San Jose; 1-1-1; Jumbo Joe Thornton gets a three-year, $21-million extension. Three more years to not pick Sharks to win? (10)

24. Carolina; 2-2-0; Hurricanes opened season in Helsinki and don't play at home until Oct. 27. (4)

25. Phoenix; 1-2-1; They're not scoring a lot of goals and will need another big season from Ilya Bryzgalov. (17)

26. Ducks; 2-3-1; Big line of Bobby Ryan- Ryan Getzlaf-Corey Perry wakes up. But the team is still allowing too many shots against. (30)

27. Minnesota; 1-2-1; Home sellout streak ends. Fans are impatient with flailing team, and with good reason. (26)

28. Ottawa; 1-4-1; Goalie Pascal Leclaire seems to get hurt getting dressed. (28).

29. New Jersey; 1-4-1; They've scored only 10 goals in six games and given up 21. Martin Brodeur is fading. (29).

30. Buffalo; 1-4-1; Averaging only two goals a game and giving goalie Ryan Miller little help defensively. (22)

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