Week 9 was highlighted by the Chicago Blackhawks continuing their dominance around the league, as the Hawks are currently enjoying a six game win streak and also have one loss in their last ten games. Despite an injury to the team’s number one goalie, Corey Crawford, the Hawks managed to get solid performances out of Antti Raanta and Scott Darling. What makes this run even more impressive is how the Hawks have been able to get great scoring throughout the line up, as Saad, Kane, Versteeg, Toews, Hossa and Richards have all put up some nice numbers during the team’s win streak. The Blackhawks are the team to watch in the West.
Another team picking it up as of late is the San Jose Sharks. Veteran Patrick Marleau is currently riding a five game point streak and led the Sharks to a 3-1 record this week. 26 year old Tommy Wingels had an impressive week for the Sharks as well, picking up five points on the week. Antti Niemi was perfect in goal this week, going 3-0, with Alex Stalock picked up the start for the team’s only loss against the Oilers to close out the week. Here’s a mind blowing fact for Sharks fans this season, the Sharks have lost to the Oilers, Coyotes, Blue Jackets (twice), Panthers (twice) and the Sabres (twice). The Sharks are 14-4-2 against the rest of the league....
Turning to the goalies, a couple of goaltenders had a rare honorable dud week. Ryan Miller had a rough outing Saturday night against the Leafs, being yanked after giving up 4 goals on just 14 shots. Backup Eddie Lack picked up two starts this past week, splitting the time with the struggling Canucks net minder. Tuukka Rask and the Boston Bruins also had a tough week visiting the west coast, as the Bruins dropped 3 out 4 games on the road. Rask was lit up against the Sharks, letting in 7 goals on 44 shots. The Bruins will gladly head home for two games in week 10.
So that’s a wrap for this week’s honorable studs and duds, let’s now begin to see who made the top 5 studs and top 5 duds this week in the NHL.
10 STUD: Sergei Bobrovsky (3W, 0L, 1.59 GAA)
9 DUD: Drew Doughty (0G, 0A, EVEN)
8 STUD LINE OF THE WEEK: Tomas Tatar, Pavel Datsyuk & Darren Helm (9G, 8A, +14)
7 DUD: Alex Ovechkin (0G, 0A, +1)
6 STUD: Ryan Getzlaf (1G, 6A, +4)
5 DUD: Sidney Crosby (0G, 1A, +2)
4 STUD: Aaron Ekblad (2G, 4A, +6)
3 DUD: Carey Price (1W, 3L, 3.04 GAA)
2 STUD: Mika Zibanejad (4G, 3A, +7)
1 DUD: Nathan MacKinnon (0G, 0A, -6)
It’s been a tough start to the season for the Avalanche and Nathan MacKinnon. The former first overall pick had the worst week of his entire career, picking up no points and a dreadful -6 rating. MacKinnon’s week ended on a very sour note against the Jets, picking up a -3 rating and being benched for most of the third period. MacKinnon is in a pretty rough slump, going goalless in his last nine games. My advice wouldn’t be to go as far as dropping him, since he’s too good to be dropped, but relegating him to being a bench player may be an option at this point.
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