Power Rankings: Best superhero (and some villains!) for all 31 teams

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The last two weeks have seen "Thor Ragnarok" and "Justice League" invade our cineplexes, which got me wondering: Was there a superhero proxy for each NHL team this season? For this week's Power Rankings -- voted, as always, by ESPN's panel of experts -- we make our heroic attempt to link up mutants, meta-humans, aliens, dark knights, costumed freaks and others with professional hockey franchises. Excelsior!

How we rank: We use a panel of voters, and these rankings reflect which teams voters think would win head-to-head matchups. Higher-ranked teams are favored over lower-ranked teams. A run of wins doesn't guarantee a jump, and a couple of losses doesn't guarantee a fall.

Previous rankings: Preseason | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5

1. Tampa Bay Lightning

Record: 14-2-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 1

SUPERMAN. Faster than a speeding puck, more goals than 29 other teams, able to leap to the top of the Eastern Conference standings in a single month. Now let's just hope that Steven Stamkos is a man of steel this season.

2. St. Louis Blues

Record: 13-5-1
Week 5 ranking: No. 2

WOLVERINE. No matter how many injuries they suffer through, the Blues just keep marauding the competition until they heal. Snikt!

3. Toronto Maple Leafs

Record: 12-7-0
Week 5 ranking: No. 8

WONDER WOMAN. After many, many failed attempts to get it right, we're finally watching a sensation ... thanks to a talented star born in the desert. [Cue guitar riff]

4. Nashville Predators

Record: 10-5-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 7

DEADPOOL. Non-traditional, raucous and a bit naughty, but successful beyond anyone's expectations. Also, P.K. Subban basically shares Wade Wilson's filter.

5. Los Angeles Kings

Record: 11-5-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 3

THE SILVER SURFER. A galactic harbinger of the coming apocalypse known as ... OK, they wear silver and they play by the ocean. Look, they're not all winners.

6. Columbus Blue Jackets

Record: 11-7-1
Week 5 ranking: No. 9

COLOSSUS. The prettiest? No. The most sophisticated? No. An impenetrable Eastern European wall of a man? Yeah, they have one of those in goal.

7. New York Rangers

Record: 9-8-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 6

BATMAN. Born in Gotham, richer than rich, a decades-long legacy ... but they ultimately lead a stark and lonely existence (because the Knicks are relevant again).

8. New Jersey Devils

Record: 11-4-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 11

TEEN TITANS. Three of their top four scorers this season are rookies. Oh, and Taylor Hall is totally their Dick Grayson, wondering when he gets to make the leap from the kids' table to the Justice League.

9. Winnipeg Jets

Record: 10-4-3
Week 5 ranking: No. 5

THE CROW. Resurrected from the grave and looking really cool in the process, they won't be satisfied until they get their revenge on those who wronged them (e.g., being an enduring NHL franchise when the Coyotes relocate).

10. Pittsburgh Penguins

Record: 10-7-3
Week 5 ranking: No. 10

THE HULK. Can appear mild-mannered for good stretches. Then, when the battle begins, they're a giant monster that pummels its foes into submission. You don't want to make Sid angry. You won't like him when he's angry.

11. Washington Capitals

Record: 10-8-1
Week 5 ranking: No. 15

FANTASTIC FOUR. Yeah, maybe after this many failures to launch we just all agree that the window of opportunity might have closed on the franchise. At least until Marvel gets the rights back.

12. San Jose Sharks

Record: 10-6-0
Week 5 ranking: No. 13

DARWIN. Remember that kid from "X-Men First Class" who had the unique ability to defend and protect himself from almost anything but provided next to nothing when it came to offense? Yeah, that's the Sharks this season.

13. New York Islanders

Record: 9-6-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 4

CAPTAIN AMERICA. Brooklyn's finest! And a team finally emerging after countless years stuck in the ice (featuring Mathew Barzal as The Winter Soldier).

14. Chicago Blackhawks

Record: 9-8-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 21

IRON MAN. Entertaining, expensive and super-popular, they ushered in a new era through their series of blockbuster victories. But let's be honest: The act is wearing thin.

15. Ottawa Senators

Record: 8-3-5
Week 5 ranking: No. 12

AQUAMAN. Routinely ridiculed and mocked as being superfluous and silly ... except for when he's a tattooed "Game of Thrones"-looking demigod (Erik Karlsson, we mean).

16. Vegas Golden Knights

Record: 10-6-1
Week 5 ranking: No. 19

THE GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY. A thrown-together collection of rejects and misfits who somehow gel as a team. Should it have worked? No. Does it work? As smoothly as a dancing Peter Quill, so far.

17. Minnesota Wild

Record: 8-7-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 27

GREEN ARROW. Wildly inconsistent, with moments of incredible success and moments of thudding failure. Rarely gets to the end of the season without feeling a sense of disappointment. But enough about the Wild, let's talk about "Arrow."

18. Calgary Flames

Record: 10-8-0
Week 5 ranking: No. 22

SHERLOCK HOLMES AND ANT-MAN. Who else could you assign to a team with the ageless Jaromir Jagr and a pocket-sized Johnny Gaudreau?

19. Dallas Stars

Record: 9-8-1
Week 5 ranking: No. 20

HAWKEYE. Undeniably talented, considered by many to be elite but ... just sort of there, you know?

20. Anaheim Ducks

Record: 8-7-3
Week 5 ranking: No. 25

GREEN LANTERN. Discovered a ring once. Felt all-powerful. Now? Constantly battling the growing power of fear ... that their entire team is going to end up on the IR.

21. Vancouver Canucks

Record: 9-7-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 16

X-23. Young, limber and dangerous ... if ultimately slowed down by the two old men she's dragging with her.

22. Edmonton Oilers

Record: 7-9-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 26

SPIDER-MAN. As Uncle Ben said, "With great power comes great responsibility." Well, there's no greater responsibility than building a winner around a generational star. Alas, right now, the Oilers are still in their "Peter Parker falling between buildings because he hasn't figured out his web shooters yet" phase.

23. Carolina Hurricanes

Record: 7-5-4
Week 5 ranking: No. 28

THE ROCKETEER. Looks absolutely amazing and as fundamentally sound as you'll find, but doesn't really do anything of substance, sadly.

24. Boston Bruins

Record: 6-7-4
Week 5 ranking: No. 14

THOR. A little pompous, thanks to the entitlement of birthright (and the kingdom where he lives). Loves to hammer opponents into submission. Ragnarok is scheduled for when Patrice Bergeron enters his declining years.

25. Philadelphia Flyers

Record: 8-8-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 24

MYSTIQUE. Deadly and tantalizing, and constantly changing her identity just when you think you have her figured out. Currently disguised as a playoff bubble team.

26. Detroit Red Wings

Record: 9-8-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 17

THE FLASH. Not simply because they can skate that well, but also what their playoff hopes will eventually be gone in.

27. Montreal Canadiens

Record: 8-9-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 18

JEAN GREY. An original member with formidable powers and significant prestige, she eventually went down a path of total self-destruction.

28. Florida Panthers

Record: 6-9-2
Week 5 ranking: No. 30

LOKI. We were all tricked into thinking they might be respectable.

29. Colorado Avalanche

Record: 8-7-1
Week 5 ranking: No. 23

JUSTICE LEAGUE. Alas, most notable in 2017 for who is no longer among them.

30. Buffalo Sabres

Record: 5-9-4
Week 5 ranking: No. 29

SUE STORM. Invisible, as usual.

31. Arizona Coyotes

Record: 2-15-3
Week 5 ranking: No. 31

THE SPLEEN. As portrayed by Paul Reubens in the cult classic "Mystery Men," The Spleen is a superhero whose power is "extremely potent flatulence." We can think of no better description of the 2017-18 Arizona Coyotes.