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Blackhawks not worried by lack of consistent scoring

Wednesday, 11.05.2014 / 2:08 PM / NHL Insider

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- Brad Richards has been around the NHL long enough to recognize a hockey illusion when he sees one.

That's why he didn't flinch a couple weeks ago when asked about the Chicago Blackhawks having difficulty scoring goals. They were shutout Oct. 28 at United Center by the Anaheim Ducks, a 1-0 game highlighted by Anaheim rookie goaltender John Gibson.

It was the first time the Blackhawks were shut out this season, but not the first time they'd struggled to score despite controlling most facets of the game. Despite posting great puck-possession statistics, their 2.33 goals-per-game average was down almost a full goal per game from the previous two seasons, when Chicago ranked near the top of the League in that category.

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Five things to watch as Rangers host Red Wings

Wednesday, 11.05.2014 / 1:00 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

The New York Rangers are trying to get used to life with a depleted defense corps. The Detroit Red Wings are again wondering where the goals have gone after a mini-breakout against the Washington Capitals and Los Angeles Kings last week.

They're each in fourth place in their respective division, meaning they're surviving now. One win this early in the season has the potential to change that to thriving.

So, yes, there's a lot to watch in the NBCSN Wednesday Night Rivalry game at Madison Square Garden (8 p.m. ET), but determining in advance where this game will be won is impossible because both teams are trying to overcome warts that are getting in the way of the consistency they're hoping to find.

Here are five things to watch in this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry game, the impossible to predict edition:

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Fantasy top 60 'D': Power-play points key category

Wednesday, 11.05.2014 / 12:00 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Brian Metzer - NHL.com Correspondent

Every Wednesday during the season, NHL.com fantasy hockey correspondent Brian Metzer will provide you with in-depth defensemen analysis. From updated weekly top 60 rankings to trending players and more, Metzer will be your go-to guy for fantasy blue line advice all season long.

Scoring in fantasy hockey leagues has grown to include statistics like hits, blocked shots, and time on ice, but at its root it still comes down to goals, assists, and points. As part of that base scoring, many leagues have begun to give extra credit for things such as shorthanded points and what we're going to discuss today: points on the power play.

There are plenty of players getting power-play minutes around the NHL, but when you are trying to locate steady sources of productivity you have to consider a number of different variables.

First, you want to look at the team itself.

Is the power play clicking at a high rate? Which players make up the unit? Will the players in your lineup be the ones picking up the points when that power play scores?

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Blue Jackets' Johnson to have Player Safety hearing

Wednesday, 11.05.2014 / 10:00 AM / Department of Player Safety News

NHL.com

Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson faces a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety on Wednesday afternoon as the result of an incident with Carolina Hurricanes forward Jiri Tlusty in the third period at Nationwide Arena on Tuesday.

Johnson was given a two-minute penalty at 7:31 of the third period for an illegal check to the head of Tlusty, who left the game and did not return.

Carolina won the game 4-2.

The following grounds are being considered for supplemental discipline: illegal check to the head. However, the Department of Player Safety retains the right to make adjustments to the infraction upon review.

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Quote of the Day

It's not always going to be pretty, especially against a great goalie [Lundqvist] like that. My goals are never how you draw them up. It's just a matter of grinding it out and trying to create havoc in front and good things happen.

— Capitals forward Jay Beagle on scoring in their Game 3 victory against the Rangers on Monday