The challenge of topping a successful debut has derailed many a once-promising career, particularly in the fickle worlds of Top 40, hip-hop, and R&B. But Drake seems poised to sidestep the dreaded sophomore slump with his hotly anticipated new album, 'Take Care.'

Preliminary sales reports indicate a massive first week for 'Take Care,' with projected sales of between 675,000 and 725,000 units. Not only will this deliver Drake his second consecutive Number One album, it actually increases the first-week numbers for his debut, 2010's 'Thank Me Later.'

Those impressive numbers should serve as vindication for Drake, who struggled with a series of release date delays for 'Take Care,' not to mention the album leaking nine days before it finally dropped on Nov. 15. But it's enjoyed strong support at radio, where the set has already spun off a pair of Top 20 singles ('Headlines' and 'Make Me Proud') with another on the way ('The Motto,' featuring Lil Wayne, heads for adds on November 29) -- as well as widely positive reviews, including four-star writeups from Rolling Stone, Allmusic and even our site.

Drake's hot streak looks set to continue in 2012, with a full slate of tour dates on the horizon as well as a role in 'Ice Age 4: Continental Drift.' Now there's just that third album to start thinking about ...