The Blackhawks are still undefeated in regulation, five of their past six games have gone to extra time. Goalie Ray Emery came up huge in relief of Corey Crawford in the shootout win against Calgary on Saturday. On top of that, they beat the San Jose Sharks on the road, putting up 5 goals. What’s even more impressive (well not to me because I expect them to make a deep playoff run) they lead the NHL with 18 points.
Penguins, who have won four in a row. They whipped the Devils 5-1 on Saturday, 24 hours later, they beat the sliding Capitals 6-3 then wiped the ice with Isle players 4-2 on Tuesday to move into first place in the Atlantic Division and first place in the Eastern Conference.
The Canadiens continue to impress under Michel Therrien, squeaking by Ottawa 2-1 Sunday to avenge a loss earlier in the week to the Senators. Carey Price is playing lights out, as expected, then again it helps having P.K. Subban back on the blueline along with the rest of this stacked defense.
(i love that logo) The Ducks continue to impress (although it shouldn’t be a surprise), ranking fourth in the league in goals per game without relying solely on their big guns (Nick Bonino chipped in three in a 7-4 win over the Kings Saturday). Viktor Fasth is 2-0 as the backup to Jonas Hiller, who is on his way of stealing the show in Anaheim. If the Ducks continue to play well under head coach Bruce Boudreau, they will make sure the Kings aren’t the only “Kings” of California…if you know what I mean!
The Bruins remain one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference, 1 point behind the Penguins, with a 6-1-1 record. They bounced back nicely after an off night against Buffalo to shut out the surging Leafs 1-0 Saturday. Wednesday night will be a good test for them, on the road in Montreal.
The Sharks were the last team to slip from the unbeaten, losing finally Saturday in a 2-1 shootout at home to Nashville. Then losing again on the road Tuesday against the Rival Ducks, then again on Wednesday at home, giving up 5 goals (3 in the first period)…I think you catch my drift.
The Blues were knocked off by Detroit Saturday then again on Tuesday with Brian Elliott in net, who have up 4 goals on 7 shots. With Jaroslav Halak on IR, this team is on route to the sewers unless Elliott picks his game up and plays like the Elliott of last season. Vladimir Tarasenko’s 10 points are second among first-year players, the only plus about this team right now.
The Canucks continue to struggle offensively, good news is Ryan Kesler is back on the ice and should be making a return shortly. Roberto Luongo-ing NO WHERE has stabilized the goaltending position, as he has every season. That, of course, has done little to alleviate the dilemma facing GM Mike Gillis, who now has to face the fact that, early on, the asset he needs to move is now one of his goaltenders. Cory Schneider won’t be in Vancouver much longer.
That’s two losses in a row for the Senators since top center Jason Spezza went out long term with a back injury. They have managed just one goal in those two losses, so there’s no question about the impact of Spezza’s absence. Then again, they won Tuesday night scoring 4 goals, but Craig Anderson allowed 3. Not a very predictable team at this moment.
Nice bounce-back win for the Devils Sunday as they stopped the New York Islanders 3-0 one day after being outclassed by the Penguins. Then to come right back to beat the Rangers Tuesday night 3-1, shows this team is over their slight slump and back on track. But, just in case, they will remain at number 10.
Tampa Bay Lightning – lack of goals lately and slow pace kept them off the list this week, but they have the fire power to get back on in week 4.
Philadelphia Flyers – Ilya Bryzgalov, without him this team would only have one win, and that one win would have been in Florida where they score 7 goals. But since then, barely averaging 2 goals a game, going to need to see the captain Calude Giroux step it up and start scoring before the Flyers ever see our top 10.
Toronto Maple Leafs – If Phil Kessel could just score already and help out this offense maybe they would be on our list. Then again, the defense is atrocious.
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