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Scott Cullen

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Fabbri is Fabulous, Triplets reunited, Matthews and more in Scott Cullen's Statistically Speaking.

St. Louis Blues sophomore winger Robby Fabbri recorded his first career hat trick in a 6-3 win over Philadelphia.

After a slow start to the season, Fabbri has 14 points (7 G, 7 A) in the past 14 games.

The important part for Fabbri, as a scoring winger, is generating more shots. He tied a career high with five shots on goal against Philadelphia, but it's the first time this season that he's hit that mark.

HEROES

Tampa's Triplets - Tampa Bay had the line of Ondrej Palat, Tyler Johnson and Nikita Kucherov together again, and they carried the day in a 4-3 overtime win against Montreal.

Johnson led the way with a pair of goals, including the overtime winner. He has five points (3 G, 2 A) in the past five games.

Palat contributed a goal and an assist, after managing just one assist in his previous eight games.

Kucherov, playing his first game since December 10, added a pair of assists. He has six points (2 G, 4 A) in six games this month.

Auston Matthews - Toronto's 19-year-old franchise player had a goal and an assist in a 3-2 shootout win at Florida. He has 15 points (11 G, 4 A) in the past 15 games.

ZEROES

Leo Komarov, Nazem Kadri and William Nylander - The Maple Leafs trio was on the wrong side of the puck (5 for, 24 against, 17.2 CF%, 2-10 scoring chances) and one for one goal against in a 3-2 shootout win at Florida.

Max Pacioretty, Phillip Danault and Brendan Gallagher - It was a rough night (8 for, 16 against, 33.3 CF%, 1-11 scoring chances, two goals against) for this Montreal line in a 4-3 overtime loss at Tampa Bay.

Steve Mason - The Flyers goaltender allowed five goals on 24 shots in a 6-3 loss at St. Louis, and has a .897 save percentage in his past eight games.

VITAL SIGNS

Aleksander Barkov - Florida's first line centre suffered a lower-body injury against Toronto and it's expected that the Panthers will be calling up reinforcements from the AHL.

Matt Murray - Pittsburgh's rookie netminder suffered a lower-body injury and was replaced by vet Marc-Andre Fleury in a 3-2 win over Carolina.

Sean Couturier - Philadelphia's centre returned to the lineup for the first time since November 22, centering a line with Nick Cousins and Dale Weise.

Justin Faulk - The Carolina blueliner is out with a lower-body injury, which allowed Ryan Murphy to get into the lineup, and contribute an assist, in a 3-2 loss at Pittsburgh. It was Murphy's first game since November 10.

Vladislav Namestnikov and Brayden Point - The Tampa Bay forwards both left the game against Montreal with injuries.

Reilly Smith - Florida's valuable two-way winger is out with a concussion, suffered in the last game before Christmas against Detroit.

SHORT SHIFTS

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Victor Hedman has been an offensive force for the Lightning.

Panthers LW Jonathan Marchessault and C Vincent Trocheck each had a goal and an assist in a 3-2 shootout loss to Toronto. Marchessault leads Florida with 11 goals and Trocheck had three points (2 G, 1 A) in his previous 16 games…Flyers rookie RW Travis Konecny earned two assists in a 6-3 loss at St. Louis, after he had two assists in the previous 10 games…Flyers C Brayden Schenn and RW Wayne Simmonds both had a goal and an assist against the Blues. Schenn has seven points (6 G, 1 A) in the past eight games, while Simmonds has nine points (6 G, 3 A) in the past 11 games…Blues D Colton Parayko chipped in a couple of assists vs. Philadelphia; he had one assist in his previous nine games…Canadiens LW Paul Byron had two assists at Tampa Bay, giving him nine points (4 G, 5 A) in the past 10 games…Lightning D Victor Hedman scored a goal and added an assist against Montreal, and has 12 points (2 G, 10 A) in the past seven games. He ranks third among defencemen with 31 points in 36 games, behind only Brent Burns and Erik Karlsson…Kings D Kevin Gravel had a solid possession game (19 for, 3 against, 86.4 CF%, 9-2 scoring chances) in a 2-1 loss at Vancouver.

Maple Leafs G Frederik Andersen stopped 45 of 47 shots in a 3-2 shootout win at Florida, giving him a .945 save percentage in his past 16 starts…Panthers G Roberto Luongo had 38 saves on 40 shots in the loss. He had been struggling, with a .895 save percentage in his previous seven starts…Canucks G Ryan Miller turned away 36 of 37 shots in a 2-1 win over the Kings. He had also been going through a rough patch, with a .850 save percentage in his previous four starts.

FIRSTS

Matthew Peca - A seventh-round pick of the Lightning in 2011, who played four years at Quinnipiac, Peca made his NHL debut in Tampa Bay's 4-3 overtime win against Montreal. He had 17 points (5 G, 12 A) and was minus-1 in 28 AHL games when he was called up.

FANTASY FOCUS

Potentially undervalued players taking advantage of power play time:

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Kyle Palmieri appears to be coming on after a slow start.

Kyle Palmieri - The Devils winger started slowly, but has 10 points (3 G, 7 A) in the past 13 games, and nine of his 19 points have come with the man advantage. With Taylor Hall hurt, the Devils need Palmieri's production.

Kris Versteeg - The veteran Flames winger has been a pleasant surprise and has 11 points in the past 11 games, with four of his past five points coming with the man advantage.

Troy Stecher - Although the Canucks rookie blueliner has been a respectable offensive contributor, with 10 points in 27 games, he has tallied four of his past six points while on the power play.

Much of the data included comes from corsica.hockey, stats.hockeyanalysis.com www.hockey-reference and www.naturalstattrick.com
Scott Cullen can be reached at scott.cullen@bellmedia.ca