ESNY’s NHL Power Rankings: Nov. 25 Update (Thanksgiving Edition)

Power rankings with a twist: which player on each team is the fanbase thankful for?

Leen Amin

Leen Amin

Turkey, pie, football, and NHL power rankings are how we celebrate Thanksgiving around here. American Thanksgiving, of course (sorry, Canada).

This edition of power rankings is going to be special. We’re going to take a look at a player on each team that his teammates and fans are thankful.

Since our last power rankings were released on Nov. 15th, this week’s rankings will be based on the time period of Nov.15th to Nov. 24th. Without further ado, let’s get right into it.

32. Arizona Coyotes

11/15-11/24: 3-1-1, 14 GF, 14 GA (Opponents: STL, CBJ, DET, LAK, EDM)
Previous Ranking: 32

G Scott Wedgewood

Since claiming Wedgewood off of waivers, the Coyotes have begun to win more games, and that isn’t a coincidence. Wedgewood is the only goalie on the team with a winning record and gives them a chance whenever he’s in net.

31. Ottawa Senators

11/15-11/24: 0-2-0, 8 GF, 13 GA (Opponents: COL, SJS)
Previous Ranking: 30

LHD Thomas Chabot

He flies under the radar, primarily because he plays for such a terrible team, but Chabot is Ottawa’s most complete and arguably best player so far this season.

He’s currently one of the best defensemen in the league and it’s a shame that the young blueliner isn’t getting more national attention.

30. Montreal Canadiens

11/15-11/24: 1-3-0, 11 GF, 18 GA, (Opponents: NYR, PIT, NSH, WSH)
Previous Ranking: 29

RHD Chris Wideman

Wideman went from being a healthy scratch to the team’s best defenseman within a matter of weeks. He’s under-appreciated, even by his own coach, who doesn’t play him as much as he should.

29. Seattle Kraken

11/15-11/24: 2-2-0, 12 GF, 14 GA (Opponents: CHI, COL, WSH, CAR)
Previous Ranking: 31

C Alexander Wennberg

Wennberg doesn’t lead the team in points, but has been very impressive this season in both zones. Watching him with the puck is so much fun.

28. Vancouver Canucks

11/15-11/24: 1-3-0, 6 GF, 11 GA (Opponents: COL, WPG, CHI, PIT)
Previous Ranking: 27

LHD Quinn Hughes

Hughes is a, or should I say the, bright spot on a team that’s falling apart at the seams. Hughes is one of the absolute best in the business. At this rate, he’ll certainly be a Norris Trophy finalist.

27. Chicago Blackhawks

11/15-11/24: 2-2-0, 9 GF, 12 GA (Opponents: SEA, EDM, VAN, CGY)
Previous Ranking: 28

LW Brandon Hagel

Hagel’s isn’t a name most would have expected to see here a few months ago. With three goals in his last five games, Hagel is on fire and is on pace to score 30 this season.

26. New York Islanders

11/15-11/24: 0-5-0, 5 GF, 22 GA (Opponents: TBL, FLA, CGY, TOR, NYR)
Previous Ranking: 26

C Brock Nelson

The team leader in scoring, Nelson has been the Islanders’ best offensive presence and seemed to be their only scorer when players began to drop like flies amid their COVID-19 outbreak.

The worst possible news was some the Islanders were greeted with this week: Nelson is going to miss two to four weeks with an injury. A Nelson-less Islanders team is not going to be pretty.

25. Buffalo Sabres

11/15-11/24: 1-4-0, 11 GF, 23 GA (Opponents: PIT, CGY, NYR, CBJ, BOS)
Previous Ranking: 22

G Craig Anderson

Was Anderson the reason we all thought the Sabres were good? He hasn’t played since the beginning of November, when the Sabres began losing. Anderson for Sabres MVP?

24. Dallas Stars

11/15-11/24: 3-1-0, 15 GF, 11 GA (Opponents: DET, MIN, STL, EDM)
Previous Ranking: 25

LHD Miro Heiskanen

One of the best offensive-defenseman in the game, Heiskanen leads the Stars in points. Looks like he was worth the extension, after all.

23. Los Angeles Kings

11/15-11/24: 0-3-1, 7 GF, 15 GA (Opponents: WSH, CAR, ARI, TOR)
Previous Ranking: 13

C Anže Kopitar

The beloved captain has shown no signs of slowing down. Kopitar leads the team in points, averaging almost a point per game. Kings fans will always be grateful for him, but the fact that Kopitar is playing so well makes them even more so than usual this season.

22. Philadelphia Flyers

11/15-11/24: 1-2-2, 8 GF, 16 GA (Opponents: CGY, TBL x2, BOS, FLA)
Previous Ranking: 19

G Carter Hart

Talk about a turn-around. Hart has gone from one of the worst goalies in the league last season to one of the best this season. He’s been key in keeping the Flyers afloat and if this team ends up making the playoffs, he’ll be a significant reason why.

21. New Jersey Devils

11/15-11/24: 1-1-1, 8 GF, 10 GA (Opponents: FLA, TBL, MIN)
Previous Ranking: 16

C Dawson Mercer

The Devils offense has come alive because of this unbelievably impressive rookie. Mercer has quickly become one of the Devils best players and top-scorers.

He’s made the players around him better and has stepped up in the absence of star center Jack Hughes. The Devils got a good one.

20. Boston Bruins

11/15-11/24: 3-1-0, 15 GF, 9 GA (Opponents: MTL, PHI, CGY, BUF)
Previous Ranking: 18

C Patrice Bergeron

The Bruins captain is having another fantastic season. Bergeron is averaging nearly a point per game, is incredible in the faceoff circle, and remains one of the top defensive forwards in the game.

The last thing Bruins fans want to do is picture where their team would be without him.

19. Detroit Red Wings

11/15-11/24: 1-3-1, 12 GF, 19 GA (Opponents: CBJ, DAL, VGK, ARI, STL)
Previous Ranking: 14

LW Lucas Raymond

The Calder Trophy favorite is averaging almost a point per game and, along with Moritz Seider, is indication that Detroit’s rebuild is going great and that the future is bright. Raymond is quickly becoming one of the faces of Hockeytown.

18. Nashville Predators

11/15-11/24: 1-3-0, 8 GF, 16 GA (Opponents: TOR, MTL, ANA, VGK)
Previous Ranking: 10

C Matt Duchene

Duchene, or the fact that he is finally awake, is the guy that Predators fans are grateful to have. Averaging over a point per game, Duchene has quickly become Nashville’s best player.

If there’s any hope for the Predators this season, Duchene is going to be key.

17. San Jose Sharks

11/15-11/24: 3-2-0, 13 GF, 13 GA (Opponents: MIN, STL, WSH, CAR, OTT)
Previous Ranking: 20

RW Timo Meier

The Sharks have looked good throughout this young season, but that wouldn’t really have been the case without Meier. The winger can’t stop scoring and has been flat-out dominant.

16. Colorado Avalanche

11/15-11/24: 4-0-0, 23 GF, 12 GA (Opponents: VAN, SEA, OTT, ANA)
Previous Ranking: 24

C Nazem Kadri

The best player on the unbelievably dominant Avalanche who are also the hottest team in hockey is… Kadri?

Kadri has a jaw-dropping 25 points in 16 games and has emerged as an important leader on a team that’s just begun to find its footing.

With Nathan MacKinnon missing so much time, it’s pretty clear that the Avalanche wouldn’t be on their insane winning streak without Kadri.

15. Winnipeg Jets

11/15-11/24: 1-3-1, 9 GF, 13 GA (Opponents: EDM x2, VAN, PIT, CBJ)
Previous Ranking: 11

LW Kyle Connor

We love talking about how underrated Connor is here, and this is obviously another chance to do that. Connor is arguably the Jets’ best player this season and is one of the league’s top-scorers. The Jets don’t as well as they have been without him.

14. St. Louis Blues

11/15-11/24: 2-3-0, 14 GF, 14 GA (Opponents: ARI, SJS, DAL, VGK, DET)
Previous Ranking: 15

C Jordan Kyrou

Man, has the emergence of Kyrou been fun to watch. Averaging over a point a game, Kyrou leads the team in points and has been unstoppable. His name came up everywhere in his first full NHL season and he’s only getting better.

13. Columbus Blue Jackets

11/15-11/24: 4-1-0, 22 GF, 14 GA (Opponents: DET, ARI, VGK, BUF, WPG)
Previous Ranking: 23

G Elvis Merzlikins

The Blue Jackets don’t give up goals and although their defense is fantastic, Merzlikins deserves a ton of credit.

He’s been consistently solid in net for a team that struggled mightily just a few seasons ago. Elvis is proving to be Columbus’ long-term answer in net.

12. Pittsburgh Penguins

11/15-11/24: 4-1-0, 16 GF, 4 GA (Opponents: BUF, MTL, TOR, WPG, VAN)
Previous Ranking: 21

C Evan Rodrigues

Move over, Sidney Crosby. Rodrigues is Pittsburgh’s guy now. Rodrigues has been absolutely incredible across the board. He makes big offensive plays, leads the team in points, and is great in his own zone.

An injury-riddled Penguins team wouldn’t have been able to do nearly as well sans Rodrigues.

11. Anaheim Ducks

11/15-11/24: 1-3-0, 8 GF, 12 GA (Opponents: WSH, CAR, NSH, COL)
Previous Ranking: 5

C Ryan Getzlaf

Guys like Trevor Zegras are drawing attention in Anaheim, but one of the greatest Ducks of all time gets this one.

Getzlaf may not be the team’s best player this season, but the adored captain is still playing incredibly well and just became the franchise’s all-time leading scorer.

10. Vegas Golden Knights

11/15-11/24: 3-2-0, 17 GF, 15 GA (Opponents: CAR, DET, CBJ, STL, NSH)
Previous Ranking: 12

RW Yevgeny Dadonov

This is quite the surprise. In his first year in Las Vegas, Dadonov has gone above and beyond.

He isn’t one of the team’s top-scorers, but Dadonov is easily the team’s most well-rounded player and is stepping up in the absence of so many of the team’s big dogs.

9. Minnesota Wild

11/15-11/24: 2-2-1, 19 GF, 18 GA (Opponents: SJS, DAL, FLA, TBL, NJD)
Previous Ranking: 8

RW Ryan Hartman

He isn’t talked about nearly as much as he should be, but Hartman has been unbelievable for the dangerous Wild. He’s tied for second on the team in scoring is elite in all zones. Give him the credit he deserves.

8. Tampa Bay Lightning

11/15-11/24: 4-1-0, 20 GF, 13 GA (Opponents: NYI, PHI, NJD, MIN, PHI)
Previous Ranking: 17

C Steven Stamkos

The captain leads the team in scoring and has been instrumental in the Lightning’s recent hot-streak. The fans love Stamkos for a reason and he’s just been doing what he does best so far.

7. New York Rangers

11/15-11/24: 3-1-0, 13 GF, 9 GA (Opponents: MTL, TOR, BUF, NYI)
Previous Ranking: 6

LW Chris Kreider

There are many great answers here, but no one deserves it more than the longest-tenured Ranger. Kreider is tied for the league-lead in power play goals and is one of the league-leaders in goals.

He’s been unstoppable all season, when the Rangers’ offense was one of the worst in the league and now that it’s gotten going.

6. Edmonton Oilers

11/15-11/24: 3-2-0, 15 GF, 15 GA (Opponents: WPG x2, CHI, DAL, ARI)
Previous Ranking: 4

C Connor McDavid

Need I say more? McDavid is so good that the Oilers employ the league-leader in goals, Leon Draisaitl, and he’s still their best player. The captain is already one of the greatest to ever do it and seems to score a highlight-reel goal every night.

We’re all grateful for McDavid, he’s a pleasure to watch.

5. Washington Capitals

11/15-11/24: 3-1-1, 16 GF, 11 GA (Opponents: ANA, LAK, SJS, SEA, MTL)
Previous Ranking: 2

LW Alexander Ovechkin

The greatest goal-scorer ever is still the Capitals’ best player and is still making history. He’s been carrying an injured Capitals team all season long while chasing Wayne Gretzky’s record.

4. Carolina Hurricanes

11/15-11/24: 3-1-1, 13 GF, 11 GA (Opponents: VGK, ANA, LAK, SJS, SEA)
Previous Ranking: 3

G Frederik Andersen

The Hurricanes obviously have several incredibly talented players, but Andersen has arguably been their best and most important.

One of the best goalies in the league this season, Andersen has been a brick wall. Carolina’s defense is fantastic, but Andersen has been great in his own right.

3. Toronto Maple Leafs

11/15-11/24: 4-1-0, 14 GF, 5 GA (Opponents: NSH, NYR, PIT, NYI, LAK)
Previous Ranking: 7

C Auston Matthews

Maple Leafs fans have nothing but love for the face of their franchise. Matthews is averaging almost a point per game and has been on fire since the Maple Leafs got over their early hump and became one of the best teams in the league. The fanbase of any team with one of the absolute best in the game is always going to be grateful for him.

2. Calgary Flames

11/15-11/24: 4-0-1, 20 GF, 6 GA (Opponents: PHI, BUF, NYI, BOS, CHI)
Previous Ranking: 9

G Jacob Markström

The Flames have been surprisingly great this season thanks to a myriad of players. But Markström has been the best of the best.

The Flames have had problems in net for years, something that’s prevented them from making deep playoff runs. It can’t be a coincidence that once they significantly upgraded in net, they became one of the best teams in the league.

Markström has probably been the best goalie in the league and has come up in big situations for the Flames this season.

1. Florida Panthers

11/15-11/24: 4-0-0, 17 GF, 7 GA (Opponents: NYI, NJD, MIN, PHI)
Previous Ranking: 1

LW Anthony Duclair

There were many guys to choose from the best team in the league, but Duclair deserves his flowers. He’s turned into a top forward and the fact that he’s one of the best players on the absolute best team is proof that he’s the real deal.

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