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The finale

Jordan Staal's Pittsburgh Penguins take on Vincent Lecavalier's Tampa Bay Lightning in the opening round. (Getty Images)

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Jordan Staal's Pittsburgh Penguins take on Vincent Lecavalier's Tampa Bay Lightning in the opening round. (Getty Images)

The NHL’s regular season is over and, starting Wednesday night, the league’s playoffs begin. That means this is the final NHL power rankings for another season - and for an added bonus, we’re including THN’s exclusive Stanley Cup odds (found in the April 18th playoff edition of the magazine).

Be sure to also check out our Round 1 Preview to get our take on who will get past the first round.

And remember, for constant and in-depth coverage of the post-season, there’s no better place to be than THN.com.

THE HOCKEY NEWS POWER RANKINGS
RK.
TEAM
LW
OVERALL
THN Cup Odds
THE SCOOP

1

Vancouver Canucks

1

54-19-9

3-1

Dominant Canucks get shot at exorcising demons of recent playoffs past by facing Hawks

2

Washington Capitals

2

48-23-11

13-2

It’s Alex (Ovechkin) the Great vs. King Henrik (Lundqvist) in rematch of 2009 quarterfinal

3

Pittsburgh Penguins

5

49-25-8

17-1

What might have been high-scoring series against Lightning now more likely to be defensive showdown without Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin

4

San Jose Sharks

3

48-25-9

19-2

Sharks one of league’s hottest teams entering playoffs, need Big Three to come through against plucky Kings

5

Philadelphia Flyers

6

47-23-12

6-1

Prolonged skid should come to halt with return of Chris Pronger in playoffs

6

Detroit Red Wings

4

47-25-10

11-2

Will Chris Osgood be an option for Wings? Doesn’t look good for first round, at least

7

Boston Bruins

8

46-25-11

9-1

Showdown with Canadiens will be the most-watched series of first round for many reasons

8

Anaheim Ducks

12

47-30-5

39-1

Ducks arguably the most dangerous of any team entering the playoffs

9

Tampa Bay Lightning

10

46-25-11

18-1

Bolts have won just three playoff games since 2004 Cup run

10

Nashville Predators

11

44-27-11

37-1

Predators will need to win games by low scores to outlast hot Ducks in first round

11

Phoenix Coyotes

7

43-26-13

24-1

Coyotes still looking for their first playoff series win in franchise history

12

Los Angeles Kings

9

46-30-6

15-1

Few giving Kings a chance of beating California rivals in San Jose; that might be the way Los Angeles prefers it

13

Buffalo Sabres

16

43-29-10

45-1

Sabres have won three of past five first round series against Flyers

14

Chicago Blackhawks

14

44-29-9

13-1

Hawks aren’t inspiring post-season confidence with late-season letdowns, but underestimate them and you’re toast

15

Montreal Canadiens

17

44-30-8

29-1

Canadiens have chance to avenge Max Pacioretty in best way possible - by eliminating Bruins

16

New York Rangers

13

44-33-5

30-1

Backing into playoffs, benching Marian Gaborik not good omens for Blueshirts’ playoffs

17

Calgary Flames

19

41-29-12

N/A

Flames’ future tangled up in salary cap hell; dealing Jarome Iginla still a possibility

18

Dallas Stars

20

42-29-11

N/A

Will ugly end to Stars season be punctuated by departure of Brad Richards?

19

Carolina Hurricanes

15

40-31-11

N/A

Last-day loss to Bolts will haunt Canes all off-season

20

St. Louis Blues

21

38-33-11

N/A

Ownership issues mean Blues will need to improve from within next season

21

Toronto Maple Leafs

18

37-34-11

N/A

Lots to like for Leafs next season, but no shortage of question marks as well

22

Minnesota Wild

26

39-35-8

N/A

Firing of coach Todd Richards a move many saw coming a mile away

23

New Jersey Devils

23

38-39-5

N/A

Maybe Jacques Lemaire can coach by Skype next season?

24

Atlanta Thrashers

22

34-36-12

N/A

Finding new owner as much of a priority as bolstering inconsistent on-ice attack

25

Ottawa Senators

27

32-40-10

N/A

Firing coach Cory Clouston won’t improve Sens’ lack of organizational depth

26

New York Islanders

24

30-39-13

N/A

Islanders need infusion of veterans this summer to help good collection of kids

27

Columbus Blue Jackets

25

34-35-13

N/A

Rick Nash has to be getting sick of this routine, no?

28

Florida Panthers

28

30-40-12

N/A

Whomever replaces Pete DeBoer as Panthers coach should be prepared for tough days ahead

29

Colorado Avalanche

29

30-44-8

N/A

Will Joe Sacco pay the price for disastrous season the way DeBoer, Richards and Clouston have?

30

Edmonton Oilers

30

25-45-12

N/A

Season of growing pains for Oilers must lead to tangible improvements next year

The Hockey News ranks the teams 1-30 each Monday based on a combination of last week’s play and a squad’s overall outlook.

For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, Subscribe to The Hockey News magazine.

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