Flames vs. Sharks, Tuesday, Apr. 6, 7:30 p.m. MST at the Pengrowth Saddledome, TSN & The FAN 960
WHO IS HOT: While rookie Logan Couture may not be a household name like many of his Sharks teammates, he's quietly becoming an offensive go-to guy for San Jose. The 21 year-old, who has played in just 22 NHL games, has been on fire during the last stretch of the regular season with three goals, four points and a +2 rating in his last five games. He scored the clutch game-winner in the third period on Friday when the Sharks defeated the Minnesota Wild 3-2.
WHO IS NOT: After a four point outing against Vancouver on Mar. 27, Patrick Marleau has fallen into a bit of a slump. The Sharks leading goal-scorer hasn't looked like his normal, extraordinarily dangerous self over that span, going three games without a single point before potting his 43rd of the year in the Sharks 4-3 OT loss to the Avalanche.
LEADING SCORERS: Joe Thorton leads the Sharks in scoring with 19 goals and 87 points in 76 games. Marleau trails him with 43 tallies and 81 points in his 79 contests. Sniper Dany Heatley rounds out the top three with 39 goals and 80 points in 79 games played.
GOALTENDING: Starting netminder Evgeni Nabokov has carried the load for his club this season, going 41-16-10 with a 2.47 GAA and a .920 save percentage. Standing behind him is Thomas Greiss, who has gone 7-4-1 with a 2.69 GAA and a .912 save percentage.
INJURY UPDATE: The Sharks have been relatively healthy with no players on the injured reserve. A few of their players, including Thorton, suffered bumps and bruises last week but have all returned to the lineup.
Flames vs. Wild, Thursday, Apr. 8, 7:30 p.m. MST at the Pengrowth Saddledome, Sportsnet West & The FAN 960
|Martin Havlat |
WHO IS HOT: Right winger Martin Havlat was signed by the Wild over the off-season in hopes of kick-starting the offense. He's had an up-and-down first season in the State of Hockey but has found his game again recently. Havlat has put up five points (2 g, 3 a) over his last five games, giving the Wild the bulk of their offense over the last five contests.
WHO IS NOT: Veteran Mikko Koivu leads the team in scoring but hasn't been able to generate much offense lately. The 27 year-old has two points in his last five outings and has been held pointless over his last three. In that drought, he's posted a -3 rating despite putting 11 shots on net.
LEADING SCORERS: Koivu leads the charge for the Wild in this category with 20 goals and 68 points in 77 games played. Right behind him is Andrew Brunette, who has potted 24 goals and 59 points in 79 games. Coming in third is Havlat. He's found the back of net 18 times and has 54 points in his 72 contests.
GOALTENDING: Niklas Backstrom is the Wild's go-to guy in net. He's gone 26-22-7 this season with a 2.71 GAA and a .903 save percentage. His usual back up is Josh Harding, who has a 9-12-0 record with a 3.05 GAA and a .905 save percentage. However, Harding is now out for the season due to injury so backup goaltenders will likely be rotated for Wild's remaining games.
INJURY UPDATE: Harding is gone for the season after sustaining a hip injury on Mar. 26. Andrew Ebbett is also gone for the season after breaking his finger on Mar. 29. Havlat missed a single game on Apr. 2 after getting ill. He'll likely be in the lineup against the Flames on Thursday.
Flames vs. Canucks, Saturday, Apr. 10, 8:00 p.m. MST at General Motors Place, CBC & The FAN 960
|Ryan Kesler |
WHO IS HOT: Ryan Kesler is in the midst of a career season and his game has picked up pace as the end of the regular season nears. The US Olympian has six points in the four-game point streak he comes into the week with, including a three-point night against the Anaheim Ducks on Friday. He also played a key role in the Canucks OT win over the Wild on Sunday with a short-handed tally that boosted his club.
WHO IS NOT: 24 year-old Mason Raymond has had a streaky 2009-10 season. At points he was red-hot and was a scoring threat every shift but lately he's hasn't been able to get his game up to that level. He has just one goal in his last five games and is a -2 over that stretch. In 15:23 of ice time on Sunday, he was only able to put one shot on net against the Wild.
LEADING SCORERS: Henrik Sedin has had an unbelievable season and is currently leading the NHL in points with a whooping 106 (29 g, 77 p) in 79 games. His twin Daniel is second in the Canucks scoring race with 24 goals and 78 points in 60 games. Kesler sits at third with 24 goals and 74 points in his 79 games.
GOALTENDING: Roberto Luongo has carried his team on his back at points over the season. He's gone 39-22-3 with a 2.56 GAA and a .913 save percentage. Andrew Raycroft stands behind him with a 9-4-1 record, 2.31 GAA and a .914 save percentage. Since the Canucks clinched the Northwest Division Title on Sunday, they may opt to rest Luongo on Sunday against the Flames.
INJURY UPDATE: F Steve Bernier and D Willie Mitchell both sit on the injured reserve.