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#TribHKY NHL Power Rankings (foolish preseason edition).

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A great day for hockey will be when we realize that the NHL plays a regular season to determine its top teams and stages a tournament to declare a champion. In other words, power rankings are not necessary. That said, since everybody else is doing one, why shouldn’t the Trib get in on this power poll game?

The preseason #TribHKY Rankings, submitted for your disapproval:

1 – Kings

To the champs goes the top spot. For now.

2 – Blues

Built for the regular-season, whether the season, be it a marathon or a sprint.

3 – Canucks

Built to win the Cup, and it’s about time for this group, right?

4 – Bruins

Big, bad and built for 7 games of brutality; but what about the backup goalie?

5 – Rangers

The time for Henrik Lundqvist and Rick Nash to deliver is upon us.

6 – Blackhawks

Jonathan Toews and the Hart Trophy seem like they should try dating.

7 – Flyers

Really, they are too high for this spot, but… (see No. 8).

8 – Penguins

Motivation + skill = ???

9 – Red Wings

This is the year when they finally – uh, nope.

10 – Coyotes

Gut feeling: Last spring was no fluke.

11 – Hurricanes

Gut feeling: This spring will be wild in The Triangle.

12 – Capitals

Adam Oates knows how to work with goal scorers. Keep that in mind.

13 – Stars

Don’t discount what Jaromir Jagr and Ray Whitney might pull off over 48 games.

14 – Ducks

Either a legit contender, or destined to shape the race by trading Bobby Ryan at the deadline.

15 – Panthers

Don’t laugh. The Southeast is better than anybody thinks.

16 – Lightning

Seriously.

17 – Sharks

Well, at least they aren’t starting the year overhyped, eh?

18 – Sabres

In Ryan Miller we trust. But do we, really?

19 – Senators

Seems so long ago, and it wasn’t, that they were up, 3-2, on the Rangers.

20 – Predators

The ranking this blog author will most surely regret?

21 – Wild

Far more exciting than Zach Parise and Ryan Suter is that fast-approaching group of prospects.

22 – Islanders

If only they were in another division.

23 – Avalanche

May be ranked a lot higher in a month.

24 – Oilers

Admittedly would be cool to see them get the No. 1 pick again.

25 – Maple Leafs

Hot mess.

26 – Devils

Hotter mess.

27 – Jets

It’s never hot in Winnipeg. Ever.

28 – Flames

Jarome Iginla to the [INSERT TEAM HERE].

29 – Canadiens

If only they could acquire more buyout options.

30 – Blue Jackets

John Davidson will get this right. Just not right now.

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Author: Rob Rossi

Rob Rossi is the lead sports columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has been called many names, but “Rossi” is the one to which he most often responds. He joined the Trib in November 2002 and was promoted to the columnist role in July 2014. Previously, he had covered the NHL’s Penguins (2006-14) and MLB’s Pirates (2006), while also working on beats associated with the NFL’s Steelers (2005-06) and the NCAA’s Pitt (2004-06). He has won national and local awards for his coverage of youth concussions and athletes’ charities. Also, he is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association executive committee and the Pittsburgh chapter chair. Raised in Crafton and Green Tree and a graduate of West Virginia University, he has covered a Super Bowl, All-Star Games in baseball and hockey, the NCAA basketball tournament and over 100 Stanley Cup playoff games, including the Cup Final twice. Oh, and his sports reporting has led him to brief chats with Mick Jagger and Bruce Springsteen; so that’s pretty cool. He is a regular contributor on TV with WPXI, Root Sports Pittsburgh and TSN. Also, he is the authorized biographer of Penguins star Evgeni Malkin.

 
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