Teams are heading down the stretch with one thing on their minds. For a contender, it's a playoff berth. For the few teams out of the playoffs, it might be the thought of a high draft pick or a late surge that will spoil a contender's chance at a playoff appearance. Now is the time for stars to play like stars and lead their teams. Here's a look at some of the hottest players over the last month.
The Chicago Blackhawks
know what is needed to succeed in the playoffs and two of their key players are leading the way. Linemates Jonathan Toews
and Patrick Kane
have been the two hottest players over the last month. Ranked first and second, respectively, since Feb. 8, Toews and Kane have combined for 42 points (17 goals, 25 assists), 9 points on the power play, 91 shots and a plus-12 each. They're tied for second in plus/minus and Toews has the points lead over the month's span with 22 points, compared to Kane's 20. Kane is riding a seven-game point-scoring streak while Toews had a nine-game streak from Feb. 18 to March 5. The duo, along with Patrick Sharp
, is leading the surging Blackhawks at just the right time.