Power Rankings: Hawks surge to No. 6
October, 24, 2011
By Jesse Rogers
ESPN.com IllustrationCHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks leaped back into the top 10 of ESPN.com’s weekly Power Rankings, checking in at No. 6 after a 2-0-1 week.
It's hard to argue with that position, though they sit directly behind two teams they’ve split games with this season (Colorado and Dallas). But considering the Hawks were ranked No. 19 a week ago, moving up 13 spots is about right.
The Avalanche deserve to be ahead of the Hawks at No. 4 despite earning two of four points against Chicago over the weekend. The Hawks got three of four but Colorado has won all six of its road games this season. That fact alone deserves a top-five ranking despite a 0-2 home record for the Avs.
Dallas snuck into the top 5 and have only lost twice in the early going, once to the Hawks. Chicago might be ahead of both teams if not for two third-period blown leads in a week, as well as coming up short in the shootout in both games.
The Detroit Red Wings, checking in at No. 2, lost for the first time this season over the weekend but are deservedly ahead of the Hawks based on their 5-1 mark. Their lone loss came against undefeated Washington on Saturday.
The Hawks and Wings have already separated themselves from the rest of the Central Division pack, with only the Nashville Predators, at No. 13, ranked in the top half of the league. Expect that to be the case for most, if not all, of the season.