Hockey

Strong starts bode well in NHL

The Pittsburgh Penguins obviously are not suffering from the Stanley Cup hangover with their league-leading 10-game start, and some of the surprising teams include Colorado, Buffalo, Ottawa, Phoenix and Edmonton.

The Atlanta Thrashers were the final team to hit the 10-game mark this season with their 3-1 victory against the Ottawa Senators on Saturday afternoon. Is it important for teams to get out the gate with a good run?

Well, with the exception of Pittsburgh's ordinary 5-3-2 record last season — mostly due to the Penguins' European visit to begin the season — the Stanley Cup champions since the 2004-05 lockout enjoyed a strong start. Carolina went 7-2-1 in the championship season, followed by Anaheim at 7-0-3 and Detroit 7-2-1.

The Penguins obviously are not suffering from the Stanley Cup hangover with their league-leading 10-game start. Some of the surprising teams include Colorado, Buffalo, Ottawa, Phoenix and Edmonton. The disappointments in the early going have been Toronto, Florida, Carolina, Anaheim and Nashville.

Eastern Conference

Pos.  Team  OT  Pts 
Pittsburgh  18 
Buffalo  17 
N.Y. Rangers  14 
Ottawa  14 
Washington  14 
New Jersey  12 
Atlanta  11 
Boston  11 
Philadelphia  11 
10  Tampa Bay  11 
11  Montreal  10 
12  Carolina 
13  N.Y. Islanders 
14  Florida 
15  Toronto 

Western Conference

Pos.  Team  Pts 
Colorado  16 
Calgary  15 
Chicago  13 
Edmonton  13 
Columbus  12 
Los Angeles  12 
Phoenix  12 
Dallas  12 
San Jose  11 
10  St. Louis  11 
11  Vancouver  10 
12  Detroit  10 
13  Anaheim 
14  Nashville 
15  Minnesota