The Boston Bruins are striking fear into their NHL rivals.

That’s the conclusion of ESPN NHL expert Greg Wyshynski, who likened the Bruins to “The Thing” on Thursday in the latest edition of his weekly power rankings. The Bruins rose from No. 2 into the top spot of Wyshynski’s pecking order, largely due to their “frightening” mix of attacking and defensive quality and their ability to win in various ways.

“‘The Thing,'” Wyshynski dubbed the Bruins in the Halloween edition of his power rankings. “The most frightening creature in the universe, because it can adapt to anything. The Bruins can defend better than almost anyone, with Patrice Bergeron, that defense and an elite goalie tandem. They can score at will, too, with burgeoning superstar David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand. Shoot at them. Rough them up. Hit them with a blow torch. It doesn’t matter. If you’re both on the ice, only one of you is surviving.”

Spooky-themed plaudits don’t come much higher than that.

The Bruins defeated the St. Louis Blues, New York Rangers and San Jose Sharks over the last week, strengthening their case for the title of best NHL team of the moment.

With fall steadily creeping toward winter, the Bruins will host the Ottawa Senators and Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday and Monday, respectively, before visiting the rival Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday. Should Boston maintain its current frightening form, another week atop the weekly ESPN power rankings is all but a certainty.

Thumbnail photo via Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports Images