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Nov. 5 NHL Power Rankings: Islanders drop to where they already were

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The opinion polls agree with our rankings: The Isles are below average.

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I think I see the problem.
I think I see the problem.
Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

In the face of the Isles falling out of favor with the opinion polls - not to mention their fall in the actual standings - it would be really easy to point to the previous LHH Power Rankings, and say "told ya so!"

But that would be unfair and incorrect.

The Lighthouse Hockey Power Rankings, as calculated by our super computer, simply scores a team based on the impressiveness of their results. If you don't play anyone good, you won't be ranked that high, even if you win every game. That issue would dissipate over the course of the season, but for now the Isles have had a rather easy strength of schedule. The fact that they lost a few games this week has dropped them in other publication's (mostly) opinion-related rankings, coincidentally down to around the same level that our rankings have them.

Weekly Roundup of Opinion-ish Polls

Opinion-ish, in the fact that Greenberg is in control of the Washington Post rankings (Opinions? We don't need no stinking opinions!!!!) and TSN uses player stats, team records, an intangibles dartboard, and a Don Cherry 8-Ball.

Site Updated New Ranking Prior Ranking Comments
1 CBS 11/4/2014 17 5 After that feel-good start, the Islanders have crash-landed. The goaltending has been particularly disappointing as the Isles sit 29th in the league with an .881 team save percentage.
2 ESPN 11/3/2014 22 4 After a 4-0-0 start, the Isles have dropped five of seven games, including three straight. Last season's issue is back despite new goalies: the Isles are 29th in goals against per game at 3.54. Yikes.
3 TSN 11/3/2014 19 8 Outscored 12-4 in three losses last week, the Islanders might be wondering what happened to that alleged offseason goaltending improvement, as Jaroslav Halak and Chad Johnson have combined for an .883 save percentage.
4 Fox 10/30/2014 11 16 The Islanders are finally playing an exciting brand of hockey and are second in the league in goals per game at 3.78. Just in time to move to Brooklyn. Doesn't seem fair. Then again, the goaltending and defense could use some toughening.
5 USA Today 11/3/2014 17 6 After a seven-goal effort, Islanders were held to four goals in their last three games.
6 WaPo 11/3/2014 13 7 Adjusted Win%: 0.514; Adjusted ShotAttClose: 0.555
Average 17 8 We don't know what regression and small sample sizes are (Greenberg excluded)

The drop is expected (except with Fox, since they publish way earlier than others do). The average placement of 17th is now pretty close to the place our own rankings have them:

LHH Power Rankings

Through 11/3/14.

GP Reg W OT W SO OT L Reg L LHH Pts LHH Rating
1 Pittsburgh Penguins 10 7 0 0 1 2 44 145
2 Tampa Bay Lightning 12 6 2 1 0 3 47 122
3 Nashville Predators 11 6 0 2 1 2 44 121
4 Minnesota Wild 10 6 0 1 0 3 39 119
5 San Jose Sharks 13 5 0 4 0 4 42 119
6 Detroit Red Wings 11 4 2 2 1 2 40 119
7 Anaheim Ducks 13 8 1 1 0 3 55 117
8 Calgary Flames 13 5 1 2 1 4 42 113
9 New Jersey Devils 11 4 1 2 1 3 36 111
10 St. Louis Blues 11 4 1 3 0 3 37 111
11 Vancouver Canucks 12 6 1 1 0 4 43 109
12 Montreal Canadiens 12 4 1 3 1 3 39 105
13 Dallas Stars 11 3 0 2 3 3 30 104
14 New York Rangers 11 3 1 3 0 4 31 104
15 Philadelphia Flyers 11 2 2 2 0 5 26 104
16 Ottawa Senators 10 4 0 2 1 3 32 99
17 Washington Capitals 11 3 0 3 0 5 27 97
18 Toronto Maple Leafs 11 5 1 0 1 4 36 96
19 Colorado Avalanche 13 3 0 2 3 5 30 93
20 New York Islanders 11 5 0 1 0 5 33 91
21 Winnipeg Jets 12 4 1 2 0 5 34 90
22 Boston Bruins 13 5 1 1 0 6 37 88
23 Los Angeles Kings 12 5 0 1 2 4 37 88
24 Edmonton Oilers 11 4 0 1 0 6 27 88
25 Chicago Blackhawks 12 3 1 2 1 5 30 86
26 Arizona Coyotes 11 2 2 1 0 6 23 83
27 Florida Panthers 9 3 1 1 2 2 29 80
28 Columbus Blue Jackets 11 4 0 0 0 7 24 77
29 Carolina Hurricanes 10 2 0 2 0 6 18 63
30 Buffalo Sabres 13 1 0 2 1 9 14 58

For comparison's sake, the Isles were 19th last week. So, this is only a one-spot drop despite the three losses in a row.

Surprised? Well, keep in mind that the teams the Isles have beaten earlier in the year are beginning to show a pulse. Therefore, the wins against Carolina (for example) actually help keep the Isles a bit more buoyant. Their overall score did drop from 99 to 91, however, so the single-place drop is a bit of a mirage.

Anyways, the Isles have a chance to make a major move if they can turn things around against the Kings and Ducks. I'm sure the team will turn things around eventually this season, either through the bounces finally going our goalies' way or through something more drastic. The Isles simply don't belong in the lower half of this table.