Improved defense has NHL's third-best penalty kill, up from 25th in 2009--10
Led by center Ryan Kesler, Vancouver's second line is one of the best in the NHL. The loss of checking-line stalwart Manny Malhotra, though, puts the Canucks at a big disadvantage—even with Maxim Lapierre at his best—against Philadelphia, whose stellar third line is nearly as good as its first, thanks to players such as Kris Versteeg (above). Vancouver has the edge in goal, where Roberto Luongo is having one of his finest seasons. But the Blackhawks proved last year that a balanced club can overcome shaky goaltending and win a Cup. Flyers in six.