Chicago (33-10-13, 79 pts, 1st in Division)
Loss to Winnipeg, OT loss to Calgary and win over Vancouver. (3 out of 6 points)
Away vs. San Jose (2/1), Los Angeles (2/3) and Anaheim (2/5)
The Blackhawks are in the midst of a seven-game road trip and find themselves on the West Coast this week.
There’s been little player news of Chicago this week. Andrew Shaw continues to play the second-line center role and has seen an increase in his TOI/G from 13 minutes to about 18 minutes per game now.
A Kane-Shaw-Saad second line looks like the trip for the foreseeable future in Chicago. Saad and Kane have both recently broken goalless streaks that were in the double digits (12 and 11 games, respectively).
Bryan Bickell also continues to ride the pine. He’s been a consistent healthy scratch for the Hawks.
St. Louis (36-11-5, 77 pts, 2nd in Division)
Wins over NYI and New Jersey (4 out of 4 points)
Away vs. Carolina (1/31), home to Nashville (2/1), Ottawa (2/4) and Boston (2/6)
Not much out of St. Louis this week. They’re finishing up an Eastern Conference swing in which they’ve won eight out of 10 points so far.
Alexander Steen missed a game due to a lower-body injury but returned quickly and now has points in five straight games.
Colorado (34-14-5, 73 pts, 3rd in Division)
Loss to Tampa Bay, wins over Dallas and Minnesota (4 out of 6 points)
Home to Buffalo (2/1), away vs. New Jersey (2/3), NYR (2/4) and Philadelphia (2/6)
The Avs continue to roll along. They suffered only their fourth loss of the month with their game against Tampa and have scored fewer than two goals only twice this entire month.
Colorado had one of the more newsworthy weeks in Conference III. They apparently offered P.A. Parenteau to the Canadiens for Rene Bourque but the Canadiens turned that deal down. It’s interesting to see him dangled out there as he’s a pretty solid winger.
The Avs also signed Semyon Varlamov to a five-year, $29.5 million extension. His extension came after a huge game against the Stars, so he should thank Dallas for their help.
Alex Tanguay returned from hip and knee injuries this past week. He’s had a goal and two assists in his two games back.
Minnesota (29-21-6, 64 pts, 4th in Division)
Win over Anaheim, loss to Colorado and OT loss to San Jose (3 out of 6 points)
Away vs. Calgary (2/1), home to Tampa Bay (2/4) and Nashville (2/6)
Minnesota is playing some roller coaster hockey at the moment. They alternated between wins and losses since the second week of January and continue to do so.
The biggest news out of Minnesota this week all had to do with Zach Parise. He returned from a broken foot last week and immediately had nearly 20 minutes of ice time. He has three goals and four assists in four games since his return.
He also had some big off-ice news as he was named captain for the U.S. Olympic team. Ryan Suter was named an assistant captain as well.
Dallas (24-21-9, 57 pts, 5th in Division)
Win over Pittsburgh, loss to Colorado and OT loss to New Jersey (3 out of 6 points)
Away vs. Anaheim (2/1), Phoenix (2/4) and San Jose (2/5)
Dallas followed up a great week of hockey with a mediocre one this past week. They looked incredible against the Penguins, solid against the Avs despite the loss and horrid against the Devils.
They’re on a Pacific Division road swing this week and play some very familiar foes.
Ryan Garbutt signed a three-year extension worth $5.4 million and will be a great depth winger for the future.
Tyler Seguin also broke a 12-game goalless streak, and Jamie Benn continues to be red hot.
Nashville (24-23-8, 56 pts, 6th in Division)
Win over Winnipeg, loss to Edmonton and SO loss to Calgary (3 out of 6 points)
Home to New Jersey (1/31), away vs. St. Louis (2/1) and Minnesota (2/6)
Recent acquisition Michael Del Zotto made his Preds debut this past week and has one point in four games with Nashville so far. He’s been playing alongside rookie Seth Jones.
Former Star Eric Nystrom also had a huge game last week with four goals in a loss to the Flames.
Winnipeg (25-25-5, 55 pts, 7th in Division)
Wins over Toronto and Chicago, loss to Nashville (4 out of 6 points)
Home to Vancouver (1/31), away vs. Montreal (2/2), Carolina (2/4) and Washington (2/6)
The Jets have been playing better hockey as of late and won four of six points last week. It could all be a result of a coaching change, and it certainly seems like the players have responded better under Paul Maurice.
They had one injury when Evander Kane suffered an infection in his hand. He’s going to be out until after the Olympic break.