On the strength of three strong performances last week, San Jose goaltender Antti Niemi vaults to the No. 1 goalie spot. Meanwhile, Winnipeg forward Andrew Ladd joins the skater rankings at No. 6 and Chicago's Jonathan Toews moves up a spot to No. 2.
On the strength of three consecutive wins, Columbus goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky vaults to the No. 1 goaltender spot. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh forward Pascal Dupuis joins the skater rankings and Washington's Alex Ovechkin moves up a spot to No. 5.
They may not enjoy the superstar status of Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin, but pivotal players like Patrice Bergeron and Mike Smith have proved vital to their teams' success and could control their playoff fate.
Tom Awad of Hockey Prospectus analyzes the NHL's new postseason plan and finds it unfair to teams in the two western conferences, who will have to spend more to compete, face worse odds for playoff spots and lose out on revenue as a result.