NHL Network Radio Presents Two Man Advantage – News and Notes, Week of January 9th

NHL

Shawn Matthias #16 off the Winnipeg Jets congratulates goaltender Connor Hellebuyck #37 after a 4-1 victory over the San Jose Sharks at the Bell MTS Place on January 7, 2018 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Photo by Darcy Finley/NHLI via Getty Images

  • WESTERN CONFERENCE
  • Vegas Golden Knights
    • 10 wins in their last 11 games and the Vegas Golden Knights enter their bye week with the best record in the Western Conference. Vegas is now 29-10-2 on the season for 60 points as they officially hit the midway mark of the season. Only the Tampa Bay Lightning and their 63 points have more points than the Golden Knights.
    • Marc Andre Fleury has provided solid goaltending. He is 9-2-1 on the season with a most impressive, .945 save percentage.
    • Malcolm Subban won seventh consecutive game last Friday at Chicago (Jan. 5) and went a perfect 6-0-0 during the month of December.
    • William Karlsson leads the Golden Knights with 22 goals on the season. Not bad for a guy who scored 17 goals in the previous three seasons combined with the Columbus Blue Jackets.
    • Golden Knights are 11-1 vs the Pacific Division and 20-5 vs the Western Conference
    • The Vegas Golden Knights own a 18-1-0 record when scoring the first goal of the game and their .947-win percentage when recording the opening mark leads the NHL.

     

  • Winnipeg Jets
    • Since shifting to center with the injury to Mark Scheifele, Blake Wheeler hasn’t skipped a beat with 5 goals and 8 points.
    • Earned 21 of a possible 28 points in 1-goal games (7-0-7)
    • Following Sunday’s 4-1 over the San Jose Sharks the Jets improved to 11-3 vs the Pacific Division.
    • 1-7 in games that have gone past 60 minutes this season
    • 15-1-1 in their last 17 at home and are 16-3-1 on home ice overall. Only the Golden Knights have lost fewer games at home in regulation (2).
    • Since returning from the Christmas break, the Jets are 5-0-1 and have earned 11 out of 12 possible points.
    • Connor Hellebuyck is on a roll going unbeaten in his last eight games in regulation with a 6-0-2 record.  For the season, Hellebuyck is 23-4-6 on the season with a goals-against average of 2.36 and a save % of .923.

     

  • St. Louis Blues
    • The Blues suffered their first loss on Sunday when leading after two periods when the Caps rallied for a 4-3 OT win. The Blues are now 20-0-1 when leading after 40 minutes of play
    • Of the Blues 19 losses, seven times they have allowed just two goals.
    • It’s been a rough go of late for Jake Allen who was decked out in a baseball cap for three consecutive games as Mike Yeo started Carter Hutton instead of Allen. Allen has just one win in his last eight starts and the Blues have scored just 11 goals in those games.
    • Alexander Steen’s second period power play goal on Sunday snapped an 0 for 21 streak with the man advantage that spanned eight games.
    • After Tuesday’s game vs Florida the Blues will have a five day break.
    • The Blues will be happy if they never see Braden Holtby again this season. Following Sunday’s win over the Blues, Holtby improved his record over St. Louis to 6-0-0.

     

  • Nashville Predators
    • Tuesday the Predators signed Yannick Weber to a two-year contract worth $650,000 in 2018-19 and $700,000 in 2019-20.
    • Kyle Turris has 19 points in 26 games since coming to Nashville
    • Is Ryan Johansen truly a number one center? His 27 goals in 162 games since joining the Predators raises some eyebrows.
    • Backup goaltender Juuse Saros has a 1.72 goals-against average and .949 save percentage in his past eight appearances. Saros allowed only five goals in the month of December, stopping 169 of 174 shots.
    • The Predators are going through their first rough patch of the season with just three wins in their last 9 games (3-4-2). Prior to their recent struggles, the Predators had won 16 of 20 games (16-2-2).
    • Their 18 home games played is the fewest in the Western Conference. With that in mind, five of their next eight games are on home ice.
    • Craig Smith has 14th goals on the season. His career high is 24 back in 2013-14.
    • The Preds have been shorthanded more than any NHL team this season. From @AdamVingan “If you created a drinking game based on the Predators’ taking penalties, congratulations, you’re dead.”

     

  • Los Angeles Kings
    • Tyler Toffoli leads the Kings with 18 goals and is on pace for a career best 34. Last season, Toffoli had 16 goals in an injury plagued season that saw him play just 63 games.
    • Anze Kopitar surpassed his goal total from last year (12) with 17 goals and without a GWG last year, Kopitar has four on the season.
    • Drew Doughty’s four GWG are the second most he has totaled in his career (5, 2009-10)
    • Dustin Brown surpassed Wayne Gretzky (246) for seventh on the Kings all-time goals list, Jan. 2 at EDM
    • Their +27-goal differential is second only to Vegas in the Western Conference

     

  • Dallas Stars
    • The Stars have been one of the hottest teams in the league of late. In their last 13 games, Dallas is 8-3-2. Nine of the 13 wins have come against teams currently in a playoff spot.  During the run, they have allowed just 2.23 goals per game which ranks sixth in the NHL during that time frame.
    • Ben Bishop is on a roll. The Stars who have been in need for an elite goaltender for quite some time have been getting stellar play from Big Ben.  Bishop has started 10 straight games going 6-2-2, with a 1.98 GAA, .936 Save %, and 2 shutouts.
    • Saturday’s 5-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers was the first time this season that the Stars got goals from Benn, Seguin and Radulov in the same game.
    • The Stars are 6-1-0 in their last seven at home.
    • The Stars have held an opponent to two goals or fewer 20 times this season. They are 17-2-1 in those games.

     

  • Colorado Avalanche
    • Saturday the Avs played Game 41, saw their win streak grow to five, and won for the 22nd time on the season to match the win total from last year’s nightmare season.
    • Their 47 points are just two shy of what it totaled last season,
    • The Avs are 7-1-1 in their last 9 and have won 10 of 14 (10-3-1) since their four game losing streak came to an end.
    • Nathan MacKinnon has climbed to second in the scoring race, seven points back of Nikita Kucherov. Since November 1, no player has more points than MacKinnon’s, 44.

     

  • Edmonton Oilers
    • The Oilers PK is 31st in the league thanks to its 55.4% efficiency on home ice. They are 86.1 on the road.  If you have an explanation, let me know.
    • Did you know, in the last 10 years the Oilers have had 4 GM’s and 7 Head Coaches.
    • Maybe he’s feeling the heat of his mega deal that kicks in next season as Saturday at Dallas was Leon Draisaitl’s 1st PP goal of the season. He had 10 PPG last season
    • Goals have been hard to come by for the Oilers and their forwards in particular. Draisaitl’s power play goal has been the only goal by an Oiler forward in their last 11 periods.

     

  • Chicago Blackhawks
    • Vinny Hinostrova has been enjoying his time with the big boys. In the past three games since playing alongside Jonathan Toews he has registered two goals and five points and seven points in his last five games overall.
    • Monday the Blackhawks put Cody Franson on waivers. Franson had one goal and six assists in 23 games.
    • In Sunday’s win over the Edmonton Oilers, Anton Forsberg recorded his first career regulation victory and just his third win in 16 career decisions (3-13-3)
    • Most shocking thing about Hawks-Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook have one goal between them on 163 shots on goal. Keith has no goals and is a (-3). This is Keith’s 13th NHL season.  He has been a minus player just twice prior.   The last time being 2010-11 when he finished at (-1)
    • The Blackhawks need to admit they are getting older with six players 30 years of age or older and four more age 29.

     

  • Minnesota Wild
    • Don’t tell Eric Staal that the NHL is a 20 something game. He’s no dinosaur at age 33 but “old” by todays NHL standards. Staal leads the team in goals (19), points with (37), shots on goal (121), shorthanded goals (2) and multi-point games (10).
    • Following Saturday loss at Colorado…This was the team’s fourth straight loss on the road, Overall, the Wild is 8-13-1 as the visitor. “We gotta learn how to win on the road because that’s ridiculous how we can play so good at home and completely opposite on the road,” coach Bruce Boudreau said.
    • The Wild have been on a roll of late at home. Back to back wins over  Florida and Buffalo last week  improved their record to 11-1-1 in their past 13 home games.

     

  • Anaheim Ducks
    • Saturday’s 3-2 loss at Calgary marked the first time this season that Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry and Ryan Kesler all played in the same game
    • The Ducks enter their 5 day break with points in 6 of their last 8 games (5-2-1)
    • Anaheim is tied in points with both Minnesota and Colorado, who currently holds the second wild card spot but sits behind both due to fewer wins. The Ducks have 19, Minnesota and Colorado both have 22.
    • Antoine Vermette’s scored the 5,000th goal in the franchise’s 25-year history.

     

  • San Jose Sharks
    • Joe Thornton is 2 points away from tying A. Oates for 17th on NHL all-time points list (1420). Thornton’s 27 points on the season are just three back of team leaders, Logan Couture and Brent Burns
    • The Sharks wrapped up their 5-game road trip on Sunday in Winnipeg with a 4-1 loss to the Jets. The Sharks finished the trip with just one win in the five games.
    • From @KKurzNHL…. On Sunday in Winnipeg, for the first time this season, DeBoer scratched Mikkel Boedker found himself a healthy scratch for the first time this season last Sunday at Winnipeg. In 32 games, Boedker has just three goals and nine points, not nearly enough production to justify his $4 million annual salary that runs through the 2019-20 season. Jannik Hansen, a fellow Dane and friend of Boedker’s since childhood, hasn’t been any better. Hansen has been scratched in 14 of the Sharks’ 40 games, and has just four assists in 26 games this season. Hansen’s inability to make an impact isn’t as concerning as Boedker’s, as the 31-year-old is a free agent at the end of the season. But his play has been just as disappointing after the hope was that he’d fit on the Joe Thornton-Joe Pavelski line when he was acquired from Vancouver late last February.
    • The struggles with the Sharks offense isn’t limited to Boedker and Hansen. Kevin Labanc has just four goals in 34 games, Joel Ward hasn’t scored since Nov. 22, going 18 in a row without a goal. Melker Karlsson has one goal in his last 12 games. Joonas Donskoi has just one assist in his last 10 games.
    • One of the biggest surprises of late in San Jose is Paul Martin, who has been a healthy scratch for the last six games.

     

  •  Vancouver Canucks
    • Times continue to be tough in Vancouver. The Canucks have lost 12 of last 14 overall (2-10-2)
    • Home has not been so sweet for the Canucks. Vancouver has just seven wins in 22 home games this season and just 8 wins in their last 37 home games overall.
    • Brock Boesser continues to be the one shining light in Vancouver. He leads the team in Goals (22), Points (40), Power Play Goals (6), Power Play Points (15) and GWG’s (4).  He leads all rookies in each of those same categories except for GWG’s where the Lightning’s Mikhail Sergachev has five.

     

  • Arizona Coyotes (update)
    • Following their loss to Colorado on Dec 23, here were some thoughts from Rick Tocchet: “You can go 2 ways as an individual. You can just feel sorry for yourself in the next 40 & just have a worse year than you have or you can bounce back. That’s what we’re looking for. We’re looking for some guys to bounce back; have some pride.” Since then the Coyotes have gone 2-2-1.
    • What a horrible season for defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson who now has a minus-34 rating for the season.
    • Clayton Keller continues to lead the team in scoring with 14 goals and 32 points. It has been a rookie season of peaks and valleys.  Keller went 17 games without a goal, recently had an eight game point streak and now finds himself pointless in back to back games. is currently on an 8-game point streak, the longest rookie point streak in Coyotes history.

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