Week Ahead: Mar 1 to 7

Okay, I'll push on three... - Ben Nelms

Time to hit the road.

Heritage Classic, a back to back, and the trade deadline.

Senators at Canucks

Game 61, Sunday, March 2nd, 4pm
CBC
Previous game
Wild, Friday, February 28th
Next game
@Coyotes, Tuesday, March 4th
Hot
Chris Higgins - 3P (1G, 2A) in last 4GP
Cold
Daniel Sedin - 0P in last 11GP

How the mighty have fallen.  Perennial division winners for the past 5 years, the Canucks are currently on the outside half of the bubble.

Part of that is the slumping Sedins.  Henrik doesn't have a point in eight games, and as mentioned above Daniel doesn't have a point in 11 games.  Both are on pace for their worst season in a decade.  The pair of them account for about half of the drop in scoring for the team since last year.  Both still lead the team in points (tied, naturally), though Ryan Kesler is hot on their heels.

Another part of the scoring woes is the dismal power play.  At 13.6%, they sit at 3rd last in the league.  The flip is the penalty kill.  It's rocking along at 84.7%, 5th in the league.  Both have trended towards the average since their visit to Ottawa in November.  Possession numbers have also dropped since then, though they're still in positive territory.

Senators at Oilers

Game 62, Tuesday, March 4th, 9:30pm
Sportsnet East
Previous game
@Flames, Saturday, March 1st
Next game
Islanders, Thursday, March 6th
Hot
Nail Yakupov - 3P (1G, 2A) in last 4GP
Cold
Jordan Eberle - 0P in last 6GP

Some things never change.  The Oilers are still a hot mess, last in the west and second last in the league.

Some things have improved for Edmonton, like goaltending.  Ben Scrivens is a significant improvement over Devan Dubnyk.  His .940 is by far the best goaltending the Oilers have gotten this season, though he is still splitting the starts with Ilya Bryzgalov.  The more things change...

Taylor Hall is still running away with the team scoring lead, with a pace that is almost .3 points per game above Jordan Eberle in second.  Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and David Perron round out the Oilers players above 40 30 25 points.

As expected, the Oilers do not fare well in the team statistics.  PP, SF/G, G/G, SA/G, GA/G and pretty much every possession statistic are all in the bottom 10 of the league, many in the bottom five.  The good news is GA/G has been dropping since the start of the season.  The bad news is it's still bad, and G/G has been dropped about as much.

Senators at Flames

Game 63, Wednesday, March 5th, 9:30pm
Sportsnet East
Previous game
@Wild, Monday, March 3rd
Next game
Islanders, Friday, March 7th
Hot
Mikael Backlund - 10P (6G, 4A) in last 8GP
Cold
Mike Cammalleri - 0P in last 8GP

Some things never change.  The Oilers Flames are still a hot mess, last second last in the west and second fourth last in the league.

Seriously.  They're not much better off than their provincial rivals to the north, and are only four points up on them on the strength of a not-horrible start to the season.  It's a very similar story for the team stats - basically add PK to the list and take SA/G off.

Jiri Hudler leads the team in points, and is the only one above 30 so far this season.  Mike Cammalleri has been the focus of trade talks despite a disappointing season, so who knows if he'll even still be a Flame by Wednesday.

Hey, maybe they can get a starting goaltender in a deal involving Cammalleri.  Goodness knows they don't have one right now.  Calgary carried three goaltenders into LA for their first game after the break - their starter was making his NHL debut (and currently has the team's best SV% and GAA this season), their backup is in his first NHL season, and the third in the press box is in his first season back in the NHL after ending up in the KHL.

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