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Scott Cullen

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Hellebuyck rising to the occasion for Winnipeg; Zibanejad, Keller, Larkin and more in Scott Cullen’s Statistically Speaking.

HEROES

Connor Hellebuyck – Winnipeg’s goaltender turned away 28 of 29 shots in a 2-1 win at Minnesota, giving him a .940 save percentage in eight games.

Mika Zibanejad – The Rangers’ top centre scored a goal to go with two assists in a 6-4 win against Vegas. He has seven points (3 G, 4 A) during a four-game point streak and leads the Rangers with 13 points (8 G, 5 A) in 13 games.

Clayton Keller – Arizona’s dynamic rookie scored a goal and added an assist in a 5-3 loss at Detroit. He has 11 points (6 G, 5 A) during a seven-game point streak.

Dylan Larkin – The Red Wings centre had a goal and an assist against Arizona, giving him six points (1 G, 5 A) in the past seven games.

ZEROES

Luke Schenn – Arizona’s veteran blueliner had a tough game (8 for, 23 against, 25.8 CF%) in a 5-3 loss at Detroit, and was on the ice for two goals against, including one that he deflected past goaltender Scott Wedgewood.

Mathew Dumba – The Minnesota defenceman had team-worst possession stats (6 for, 13 against, 31.6 CF%) and had a glaring turnover that led to Winnipeg’s second goal in a 2-1 loss.

Rick Nash – The veteran Rangers winger was buried in his own end (3 for, 20 against, 13.0 CF%), yet managed to avoid getting scored on in a 6-4 win against Vegas.

VITAL SIGNS

Nino Niederreiter – The Wild winger returned to the lineup against Winnipeg to play his first game since October 12.

Shea Theodore – Vegas’ 23-year-old blueliner played in his first NHL game of the season, called up after scoring 11 points (5 G, 6 A) in eight AHL games.

SHORT SHIFTS

Golden Knights RW Reilly Smith scored two goals and Golden Knights LW Jonathan Marchessault added two assists in a 6-4 loss at the Rangers. Smith has seven points (4 G, 3 A) in the past six games, while Marchessault has six points (3 G, 3 A) in his past five games…Red Wings C Darren Helm had a goal and an assist against Arizona; he had one goal in his previous seven games…Rangers right wingers Mats Zuccarello and Pavel Buchnevich both contributed a goal and an assist against Vegas. Zuccarello had three points (1 G, 2 A) in his previous 10 games while Buchnevich has six points (4 G, 2 A) in the past four games…Wild D Ryan Suter fired 13 shot attempts (5 SOG) against Winnipeg.

FIRSTS

Maxim Lagace – Vegas’ fourth-string goaltender, a 24-year-old who was undrafted out of the QMJHL and had been playing previously in Dallas' system, has been pressed into action and had his first career NHL start, stopping 32 of 37 shots, in a 6-4 loss at the Rangers.

Many of the advanced stats used here come from Natural Stat TrickCorsica and Hockey Reference.

Scott Cullen can be reached at scott.cullen@bellmedia.ca