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Scott Cullen

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Dallas' big guns were firing against Carolina; Shattenkirk, Stone, Giroux, Ovechkin, Faulk, fantasy and more in Scott Cullen’s Statistically Speaking.

HEROES

Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin, Valeri Nichushkin – The Stars’ big line put on a show in a 6-5 win over Carolina. Benn had a goal and three assists, busting out from a season-long three-game scoreless streak. Seguin also had a goal and three assists; he and Benn are tied for second in the league with 39 points, four behind Patrick Kane. As I mentioned on last week’s Hockey Analytics Show, Benn and Seguin both have a good chance to finish in the top five.

A recent addition to the top line, Valeri Nichushkin, contributed a goal and two assists, and has seven points (2 G, 5 A) in the past five games. He had five points in 21 games prior to this recent scoring surge.

Kevin Shattenkirk – St. Louis’ puck-moving blueliner had a goal and an assist in a 4-1 win against Arizona, and has 13 points (4 G, 9 A) in the past 12 games. Since the start of last season, Shattenkirk leads defencemen (minimum 1000 minutes) in all-situations points/60.

Mark Stone – The Senators winger had three assists in a 4-2 win at Florida. He has 10 points (4 G, 6 A) in the past eight games. Since the start of last season, Stone has the sixth-highest on-ice shooting percentage at 5-on-5.

ZEROES

Cam Atkinson – The Blue Jackets winger didn’t generate any shot attempts and had a rough possession game (5 for, 18 against, 21.7 SAT%) in a 3-2 OT loss to Los Angeles. In the past five games, Atkinson has no points and eight shots on goal.

Connor Brickley – The Panthers rookie had a difficult night against Ottawa, failing to generate a shot attempt and on for two shot attempts for and nine against (18.2 SAT%). It’s not altogether unusual.as his possession stats lag behind the rest of Florida’s forwards. He has one point and seven shots on goal over his past 11 games.

Goaltenders:

Cam Ward – Carolina’s goaltender was pulled at Dallas, after allowing four goals on eight shots. His .893 save percentage is miles from being competitive for a starting goaltender, and is his lowest since his rookie season, 2005-2006, when he had an .882 save percentage in 28 games before going on a playoff run and winning the Conn Smythe as playoff MVP when the Hurricanes won the Stanley Cup.

Steve Mason – The Flyers goaltender surrendered three goals on 10 shots before getting pulled in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Islanders. After a couple of strong seasons with the Flyers, Mason’s performance has slipped this year, and he has a .905 save percentage in 18 games.

Martin Jones – San Jose’s goaltender was pulled after allowing three goals on 14 shots at Calgary, though he still has a .920 save percentage in 22 games.

VITAL SIGNS

Sergei Bobrovsky – Columbus’ starting goaltender was injured against Los Angeles and was replaced by Curtis McElhinney, who allowed two goals on seven shots on relief. 

Logan Couture – The Sharks centre returned to the lineup, with an assist, in a 4-2 loss at Calgary. He had been out since suffering a broken fibula October 13.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic – San Jose’s shutdown defender remained out of the lineup in Calgary, due to a lower-body injury. Brenden Dillon has moved into San Jose’s top four

Alec Martinez – The Kings blueliner played a season-high 24:10 and contributed a goal, the overtime winner, and an assist with 12 shot attempts (7 SOG) in a 3-2 win at Columbus.

Adam Henrique – With the Devils already missing C Travis Zajac, they lost another threat down the middle when Henrique left following a collision with Maple Leafs G Garret Sparks.

FIRSTS

Logan Shaw – The Panthers rookie winger scored his first NHL goal, in his seventh career game, in a 4-2 loss to Ottawa. The 2011 third-round pick had seven goals in 13 AHL games this season.

Dennis Rasmussen – Scored his first NHL goal in his first NHL game for the Chicago Blackhawks. The 25-year-old Swedish winger had 14 points (7 G, 7 A) in 22 games for Rockford in the AHL.

Phil DiGiuseppe – Scored his first NHL goal in his third NHL game for Carolina. The 2012 second-round pick had 14 points (6 G, 8 A) in 20 games when he was recalled.

Jaccob Slavin – The Hurricanes defenceman notched his first NHL goal, in his ninth game. The 2012 fourth-rounder had no goals and seven assists in 14 AHL games before getting called up.

SHORT SHIFTS

Flyers C Claude Giroux had a goal and an assist in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Islanders, giving him 11 points (4 G, 7 A) in the past eight games…Capitals LW Marcus Johansson had a pair of assists in a 3-2 shootout win against Detroit, and has six points (2 G, 4 A) in the past five games…Blues LW Alexander Steen had a goal and an assist vs. Arizona; he has seven points (2 G, 5 A) in the past six games…Hurricanes C Victor Rask chipped in three assists, and has six points (2 G, 4 A) in the past six games…Stars D John Klingberg had three assists against Carolina, giving him 15 points (3 G, 12 A) in the past 12 games…Flames D Mark Giordano had a pair of assists against San Jose, and has five points (2 G, 3 A) in the past five games.

Capitals LW Alex Ovechkin scored a goal, on 16 shot attempts (8 SOG) and had seven hits in 25:43 of ice time at Detroit…Kings RW Jordan Nolan had a strong possession game (10 for, 1 against, 90.9 SAT%) in limited action at Columbus…Hurricanes D Justin Faulk scored a pair of goals on 11 shot attempts (5 SOG) at Dallas, giving him 11 on the season. All of them have come on the power play. See Faulk’s power play goal chart here.

Devils G Cory Schneider let in a shaky bouncing shot, but still stopped 35 of 37 shots in a 3-2 shootout loss at Toronto; he has a .930 save percentage over his past 14 games…Blackhawks G Corey Crawford turned aside 36 of 37 shots in a 4-1 win against Nashville, and has a .935 save percentage in the past six games…Maple Leafs rookie G Garret Sparks had 25 saves on 27 shots to win for the third time in four career starts. His save percentage is .921 since getting called up from the AHL.

FANTASY FOCUS

Some players to consider adding to your lineup, available in more than 50% of TSN leagues:

Jeff Skinner – The Carolina winger was one of my sleepers coming into the season, and started slowly, but has five points (4 G, 1 A) in the past seven games and has somehow managed just two assists in 28 games, so those numbers have to pick up. Owned: 31.5%

John Moore – Stepping into a bigger role on the Devils blueline, Moore has six points (1 G, 5 A) in the past seven games and has played at leats 19:00 minutes in eight of the past nine games. Owned: 4.8%

Jamie McGinn – Buffalo’s hard-driving winger missed most of last season with back troubles, but is starting to find his touch, with seven points (2 G, 5 A) during a six-game point streak. McGinn could still use a little more ice time, as he’s played more than 13 minutes just once in the past dozen games. Owned: 0.8%

Much of the data included comes from www.war-on-ice.comstats.hockeyanalysis.com www.hockey-reference and www.naturalstattrick.com

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