Two teams climbing toward the top of the Atlantic Division face off when the Detroit Red Wings visit the Tampa Bay Lightning this week in the Wednesday Night Rivalry game (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports).
The winner of this game will be alone in second place in the division. Each team has been playing well: The Lightning are 8-1-0 in their past nine games; the Red Wings are 6-3-1 in their past 10.
Here are four players helping their teams make the Coors Light Climb:
Petr Mrazek, G, Red Wings -- Mrazek has taken away the starting job from veteran Jimmy Howard. He won his final two games before the break, is 3-1-1 in his past five starts and has allowed seven goals in that span. Mrazek's 2.03 goals-against average is third in the NHL, and his .932 save percentage is second.
Dylan Larkin, F, Red Wings -- The 19-year-old had an All-Star Weekend to remember, including a race to remember when he broke Mike Gartner's 20-year-old record for best time in the fastest skater competition during the skills competition. Larkin earned his way into the All-Star Game by scoring a team-high 15 goals in Detroit's first 49 games; he shares the Red Wings lead in points (33) with captain Henrik Zetterberg.
Ben Bishop, G, Lightning -- Bishop helped keep the Lightning afloat when they were ravaged by injuries during the first half of the season, and he's continued to excel as Tampa Bay has gotten healthy. He's won four of his past five starts, allowing eight goals in that span, and his 2.02 GAA is second in the NHL. His .926 save percentage through the break has him on track for a career-best.
Nikita Kucherov, F, Lightning -- The highest-scoring member of the "Triplets" line has been on a roll that coincides with that of Tampa Bay. Kucherov has six goals and 11 points in the Lightning's past nine games, eight of which were victories. With 20 goals and 41 points in 49 games, he's on pace for 33 goals and 68 points, each of which would be a career high.