Pittsburgh leads the Metropolitan Division once again. Get ready to see a lot of that this season. While their lead is by no means insurmountable now, they've had one of the best starts to this season in the entire National Hockey League. As such, they look good early on. The rest of the division, well, it's a bit of a mess beyond third place.
|Team||GP||W||L||OT||ROW||Pts||Last Week||Ptl. Pts|
Source: NHL.com - Links go to SBN blogs
The Carolina Hurricanes remain the other team that got at least half of their potential points two weeks running. They're so far behind the Penguins but that game in hand Pittsburgh has gets used this week plus the Canes are down by tiebreakers. Still, they can also say they have had a good start. The Washington Capitals may have been shutout by the New York Rangers on national TV, but their week was otherwise quite successful. That propelled them up to fourth and if the New York Islanders continue to just maintain earning half of the points in a game; they could stay up with them.
Down in the lower end, the New Jersey Devils finally got a win and got it against the Rangers. As a result, they're ahead of two teams with double of the wins they do. That sums up how things have gone down there. The Rangers split their previous week but it was only two games plus they didn't win much before then so they still behind. The Columbus Blue Jackets hit the road last week and lost all three of their games; a losing streak totaling four games and counting. As such, they fell way down in the standings. That one game in hand over the Philadelphia Flyers - which will go away this week - keeps them from the very bottom. So much for that coaching change in Philly.
Here's how the week is shaping up for the Metropolitan Division. Impressively, no one is playing on Wednesday:
|PIT||vs. COL||vs. NYI||@ TOR|
|CAR||@ MIN||@ COL|
|NYI||vs. VAN||@ PIT||vs. PHI|
|WSH||@ WPG||@ EDM||@ CGY|
|NJD||@ CBJ||vs. VAN||@ BOS|
|NYR||@ PHI||@ DET|
|CBJ||vs. VAN||vs. CBJ||vs. TOR|
|PHI||vs. NYR||@ NYI|
There's barely any action on Sunday and Monday, too. Columbus opens the week later today against Vancouver, who's on the East Coast this week. Pittsburgh hosts Colorado on Monday, which should be a good battle between top teams. From then on, the schedule picks up though you'll have to wait longer if your a Rangers or Flyers fan. In fact, that Thursday night game between the two should be interesting to see who slams who into the bottom of the division. Elsewhere, Carolina only had a back-to-back set on the road; Columbus gets three straight home games; and Washington will undergo their West Coast Roadtrip. While Winnipeg, Edmonton, and Calgary aren't so good; Devils fans should know those games aren't easy points.
As for our favorite hockey team, it's important that the team doesn't slip back into another winless streak after getting that first one. It would only implant them further in the wrong end of the standings among other issues. It won't be easy. Columbus will be desperate for a win on Tuesday. Vancouver and Boston are both really strong teams. Of course, getting any result in this league is never easy. Let us hope the Devils are up to the challenge.
What do you think will happen within the Metropolitan this week? Can the Pittsburgh Penguins continue to hold everyone off? Will the Canes or, if they string a few wins together, the Isles stay close behind? Who will reign among the five sub-.500 teams after this week? Please leave your answers and other thoughts about the division and the upcoming schedule in the comments. Thank you for reading.