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ST. PETERSBURG TIMES POWER RANKINGS

1. DETROIT (2 last week): 9-1-2 start was best in team's 71 years.

2. COLORADO (1): Patrick Roy moved into seventh place on the all-time wins list for goalies. If he finishes with four more victories than Grant Fuhr this season, and five more than Andy Moog, he'll be fourth all-time.

3. DALLAS (3): Stars are 1-0-1 versus Avalanche this season.

4. WASHINGTON (5): Caps will retire Rod Langway's jersey in final game at USAir Arena on Nov. 16.

5. NEW JERSEY (6): Devils starting to scare, and Andreychuk and Thomas, both out with injuries, are close to returning.

6. PHILADELPHIA (4): Paul Coffey had two points in first 13 games.

7. MONTREAL (8): Started 6-4-2 but was 1-2 against teams that missed playoffs last season.

8. N.Y. RANGERS (9): A stat that must be repeated: Gretzky has more assists than any player in NHL has points. And, oh, he is also the leading goal-scorer in NHL history. Mind-boggling.

9. OTTAWA (11): Remember when people used to compare Lightning and Senators, then laugh at the Senators?

10. ST. LOUIS (14): 10-2-2 start was best in the team's 31 years.

11. PHOENIX (10): Coyotes howl late at night: They lead league in third-period goals.

12. ANAHEIM (13): Paul Kariya and Ducks are barely speaking these days.

13. PITTSBURGH (15): Longest road trip in team history ends with 5-2-1 record.

14. EDMONTON (12): Much-anticipated sophomore season has turned ugly for Mike Grier. No goals in the first month.

15. VANCOUVER (7): Think Messier wishes he could rewind clock to August?

16. BOSTON (17): GM Harry Sinden announced '97 No.

1 draft pick Joe Thornton will not be sent back to juniors.

17. BUFFALO (16): Who would've thought a team with Dominik Hasek would be ranked next to last in goals-against average?

18. N.Y. ISLANDERS (19): After years of hearing their team taunted at Madison Square Garden, Isle fans chant "Messier, Messier, Messier" to Rangers GM Neil Smith.

19. FLORIDA (18): In the past, these cats were boring but successful. Now they're only boring.

20. LOS ANGELES (21): Construction has begun on new building. Expected opening: fall 1999.

21. CHICAGO (22): No.

1 goalie Jeff Hackett is not expected back soon after spraining an ankle.

22. TORONTO (23): GM Ken Dryden says Mike Murphy's coaching job is not in jeopardy.

23. CAROLINA (24): Hot rumor: Jacques Demers will replace Paul Maurice behind the bench.

24. SAN JOSE (25): Sharks are 0-12 during regular season at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.

25. CALGARY (26): This would be the worst team in the NHL if not for 26. TAMPA BAY (20): Yes, folks, this is the worst team in the NHL.

_ TOM JONES

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