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Western Conference Notebook (Nov. 24)

by Jay Levin / Nashville Predators
San Jose, Detroit, and Vancouver lead their respective divisions heading into this week’s action … The Western Conference is 48-25-10 in games against Eastern Conference opponents and only two of the 15 conference teams have a losing record against Eastern Conference opponents (Chicago at 1-2-1 and St. Louis at 2-4-1) … Western Conference All-Star Voting Update: Top 3 Forwards –Hossa - DET (169,621), Pavel Datsyuk – DET (164,650), Zetterberg – DET (161,531) … Next: Iginla – CGY (151,241) and Kane – CHI (102,383) … Highest Preds forward: Arnott (24,350) … Top 2 Defensemen – Lidstrom – DET (248,119) and Phaneuf – CGY (199,400) … Next: Rafalski – DET (107,255) … Highest Preds defenseman: Weber (52,654) … Top Goaltender – Luongo – VAN (223,740) … Next: Osgood – DET (88,863).

Central Division
Nashville defenseman Shea Weber leads NHL defensemen in goals (10) and points (21), 3 goals ahead of the closest defenseman (Souray and Green – 7 goals) and 3 points ahead of the next closest defenseman (Boyle – 18 points) … Chicago forward Patrick Sharp is tied for the Western Conference lead in goals (12) … Detroit forward Johan Franzen leads the NHL in game-winning goals (4) … Entering this week the Central Division boasted the two highest scoring rookies in the NHL this season in Chicago’s Kris Versteeg (20 points) and Columbus’ Derick Brassard (19 points) … There are two intra-divisional games on the schedule for this week: St. Louis at Nashville on Tuesday and Columbus at Detroit on Friday.

Northwest Division
Entering this week’s games, Edmonton has played more road games than any team in the conference (14 road games vs. six home games), one more road game than Nashville (13 road games and seven home games) … Vancouver goaltender Roberto Luongo leads the NHL with 5 shutouts … Minnesota goaltender Nicklas Backstrom leads the Western Conference in save percentage (.932) … Vancouver defenseman Willie Mitchell leads the Western Conference in plus/minus rating (+14) … Colorado goaltender Peter Budaj leads the NHL with 4 shootout wins … There are two intra-divisional games scheduled for this week: Calgary at Vancouver on Thursday and Vancouver at Calgary on Saturday.

Pacific Division
Entering this week's games, Los Angeles had played more home games than any team in the conference (14 home games vs. five road games) ... Anaheim forward Ryan Getzlaf leads the Western Conference with 26 points … San Jose forward Devin Setoguchi is tied for the conference lead in goals (12) … Dallas forward Sean Avery leads the NHL in penalty minutes (77) … Los Angeles forward Dustin Brown leads the conference in shots on goal (87) … Anaheim forward Teemu Selanne leads the NHL in power-play goals (9) … San Jose goaltender Brian Boucher leads the Western Conference with a 1.89 goals against average … There are two intra-divisional games scheduled for this week: San Jose at Dallas on Friday night and San Jose at Phoenix on Saturday night.

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