WHL Power Rankings – Week 20: Good Teams Keep Winning


The trend this week seems to be the same as last week: The good teams are winning and the bad teams are losing. The top five teams in these rankings have all won at least five games in a row. This includes the red hot Winterhawks who are now riding an eight-game winning streak.

Portland seems to be riding the momentum that Adin Hill has created. He still leads the league in save percentage and doesn’t seem to be slowing up any time soon. This streak has seen a variety of different ways to win. Some games the Winterhawks have scored a lot from the start and others they have been forced to come back from behind. Either way, this eight-game winning streak has seen Portland outscore their opponents 43-22.

If there were one thing I would want to see the Winterhawks tighten up, as the playoffs approach, are the shot totals. Just because Adin Hill leads the league in save percentage doesn’t mean he isn’t giving up goals. Let me put this into perspective for you. In 30 games, Adin Hill has faced 1,008 shots. Mack Shields of the Hitmen has played in nine more games and given up 44 less shots. Eventually this will have to be solved, but the way these guys are playing right now, I am sure it will not be a problem.

There is no better time than now for the Winterhawks to play the Thunderbirds. The game on Sunday will be the real challenge as the Winterhawks travel to Everett, but I see the streak stretching to ten. See you next week hockey fans

Checkout where the Winterhawks fell in Week 20’s WHL Power Rankings:

[table colwidth=”8%|18%|8%|8%|8%|50%” colalign=”center|center|center|center|center|left” rowlalign=”center”]

1,Brandon Wheat Kings,37-9-5,—,1,”Brandon Wheat Kings~~Brandon is back to scoring goals at the same pace they were at the start of the year. They have scored 40 goals over the last seven games. As you can imagine, this has lead to them continuing to win and stay at the top of the rankings. ”
2,Medicine Hat Tigers,35-12-3,—,2,”Medicine Hat Tigers~~It’s hard to believe they have not lost a regulation game in seven games but still can’t manage to move up. This sets up a massive matchup this week when the Wheat Kings come to town. Could we see a swap at the top?”
3,Kelowna Rockets,39-8-4,—,3,”Kelowna Rockets~~Kelowna is also streaking right now, having claimed points in six straight games. It is hard for me to see the Rockets losing any time soon with the extremely favorable schedule upcoming.”
4,Portland Winter Hawks,31-19-3,[icon name=icon-arrow-up] +1,5,”Portland Winterhawks~~Make that eight straight for the Winterhawks. They seem to be winning games in different fashion every night. From comeback wins, to runaway victories, this team is clicking right now.”
5,Calgary Hitmen,29-17-5,[icon name=icon-arrow-up] +2,7,”Calgary Hitmen~~The Hitmen are hot right now and have finally cracked the top five. They have won six straight games, and during those six games they have scored forty goals. That is the best six-game stretch we will see all season. ”
6,Red Deer Rebels,27-15-8,[icon name=icon-arrow-down] -2,4,”Red Deer Rebels~~Red deer is in a semi-slump at the moment. They haven’t been able to win in three straight now including a bad loss to the Raiders. A three game road trip against inferior teams might make or break this team. ”
7,Everett Silvertips,31-15-4,[icon name=icon-arrow-down] -1,6,”Everett Silvertips~~Everett has been boom or bust lately. In their last four wins, they have given up three total goals. In their last three losses, they have given up 20 total goals. That could be an issue moving forward. ”
8,Victoria Royals,28-20-4,—,8,”Victoria Royals~~Victoria is a pretty consistent team; you know what you are getting with the Royals when they step on the ice. They are going to score between two and four goals every game and hope their defense can hold up enough to win. ”
9,Regina Pats,27-17-6,—,9,”Regina Pats~~Regina is a good team but cannot be considered elite. They lose to the top teams on a regular basis and will need to fix that if they want to make a playoff run. ”
10,Kootenay Ice,27-24-1,—,10,”Kootenay Ice~~The Ice had looked like a team that had hit their stride in full form. Since getting back to .500 after a torrent streak, they have cooled off a bit. I still expect them to surprise people in the playoffs. ”
11,Seattle Thunderbirds,25-19-6,—,11,”Seattle Thunderbirds~~Seattle had a pretty good weekend against the Cougars. They outscored them 12-2 in two games including a nine-goal onslaught on Friday. Next up for the Thunderbirds is archrival Portland. ”
12,Spokane Chiefs,24-21-4,[icon name=icon-arrow-up] +1,13,”Spokane Chiefs~~The Chiefs win on Saturday ended a streak in which they scored only one goal in 16 periods. Let me repeat that, one goal, sixteen periods. That’s a streak that could haunt their playoff chances. ”
13,Edmonton Oil Kings,24-22-6,[icon name=icon-arrow-down] -1,12,”Edmonton Oil Kings~~The “defending champs” is a title I will no longer have to use when talking about the Oil Kings next season. They just don’t have what it takes this season. In order to move up the standings, they need to win multiple games in a row and they struggle to do that. ”
14,Swift Current Broncos,23-23-5,—,14,”Swift Current Broncos~~The Broncos are playing exactly how we expect them to. Win won game big, and then lose the next by getting shutout. If I were a betting man, I would bet they finish within one game of exactly .500 at the end of the year. ”
15,Tri-City Americans,24-24-3,—,15,”Tri-City Americans~~The Americans are very similar to the Broncos. They are consistently inconsistent. They are able to win a game against a good team, and then lose to a bad team. ”
16,Prince Albert Raiders,21-28-1,[icon name=icon-arrow-up] +2,18,”Prince Albert Raiders~~The Raiders got a great win in Red Deer on Saturday. Problem is, they gave up ten goals the night before. I believe that if you give up ten goals in a game, you don’t deserve to make the playoffs. ”
17,Kamloops Blazers,20-26-6,[icon name=icon-arrow-up] +2,19,”Kamloops Blazers~~The Blazers are not very good. Yes they have won six of the last eight, but are still six games below .500. Only a few weeks away until they are preparing for next season. ”
18,Moose Jaw Warriors,20-27-4,[icon name=icon-arrow-down] -1,17,”Moose Jaw Warriors~~Moose Jaw has not had an easy go as of late. With two games against Brandon, you can guess how those turned out. This team just does not have the talent to compete in games like that. ”
19,Vancouver Giants,20-28-3,[icon name=icon-arrow-down] -3,16,”Vancouver Giants~~We all knew that win the Giants had last week was a fluke. They are back to playing like everyone expects and have lost four straight. They are a very bad team but still manage to win just enough games to not be mentioned with the worst teams in the league. ”
20,Saskatoon Blades,15-31-3,—,20,”Saskatoon Blades~~Well anyone can do the math; having more than double the amount of losses than wins can only amount to bad things. This team is in the category of “worst teams in the WHL” and doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.”
21,Lethbridge Hurricanes,12-31-6,[icon name=icon-arrow-up] +1,22,”Lethbridge Hurricanes~~The Hurricanes no longer hold down the bottom spot on these rankings. Though this small victory doesn’t get included in the win column, it is something Lethbridge can hang their head high about.”
22,Prince George Cougars,20-31-2,[icon name=icon-arrow-down] -1,21,”Prince George Cougars~~The streak continues! It has now been twelve straight games since the Cougars tasted victory. Think about that for a second; they used to be at .500 and are now sitting at the bottom of the standings in the Western Conference.”


Ryan Boshoven
Ryan is a former Division 1 athlete now working in the world of sport marketing. He earned his Master's Degree in Sports Business. He likes to spend his free time playing golf and going to sporting events. Ryan also has two brothers that are the same age as him. "Being a triplet is pretty awesome!" he says.
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