Evander Kane made his return to the Jets lineup on Monday and helped them to a 3-2 win over Columbus. Kane had a goal and a helper, while adding six shots. He’s such a versatile player and Winnipeg looks like a different team when he’s out there.

 

Mark Scheifele scored for the Jets and now has a three-game point streak going. He also finished plus-2 against the Blue Jackets.

 

Speaking of scoring streaks, Bryan Little’s goal gave him four straight with a point. He’s also got 10 shots over that stretch.

 

Devin Setoguchi has cooled considerably after having a nice run earlier in the month. After scoring five points in five games, he’s now picked up just a single point in five contests. With that being said, Setoguchi did play nearly 20 minutes against Columbus, his highest ice-time since Nov. 29th.

 

*

 

Mike McKenna made his second straight start for the Blue Jackets and this outing was a little better than Saturday. He stopped 29-of-32 shots.

 

Matt Calvert is someone to keep an eye on. His assist on Monday gave him points in four of his last five.

 

Ryan Johansen picked up a helper to extend his point streak to nine games. I was worried that with the return of Brandon Dubinsky from injury and Marian Gaborik on his way back as well it might hurt his minutes and production, but so far that doesn’t look to be the case.

 

*

 

The Leafs squandered another decent effort and lost 3-1 to the Penguins Monday night. On the plus side, Morgan Rielly scored his first career goal. He’s had moments this year where his skating has really been an asset and made it look like he’s ready for NHL competition. And others where he has looked out of place from a positional stand point. Overall a pretty typical start to a career for a youngster of his skill set.

 

Nikolai Kulemin failed to pick up a point after scoring three in his last two games. He did have a good effort though and has been skating better as of late.

 

James van Riemsdyk’s play has been concerning recently. He’s got just one point in five games after being so consistent all season. What was especially troubling was his performance on Saturday when Toronto put up seven goals against the Blackhawks and van Riemsdyk didn’t even muster up a shot.

 

*

 

Sidney Crosby scored the winner for Pittsburgh. What else is new?

 

The Pens put Kris Letang on injured reserve before the game and they are now extremely thin on the blueline. Watch for several defenders’ minutes to increase there. Simon Despres is one to watch and he even got some power play time on Monday against the Leafs. Matt Niskanen is another guy who excelled earlier this year when Letang was sidelined. He led the team with five shots and had three hits in over 25 minutes of action against the Leafs.

 

*

 

The Blues lost to the Senators but even worse for St. Louis was David Backes leaving the game with an upper-body injury. No word on how serious it is at this point.

 

Chris Stewart notched two goals and he has four in his last three games. He played just over 13 minutes in this one but should see that number climb with the way he has been playing.

 

Derek Roy assisted on both Stewart goals to give him five points in his last four games. He’s playing so well right now that his stick is still making plays when it isn’t even in his hands.

 

 

Vladimir Sobotka and Jaden Schwartz missed this one with injuries.

 

Alex Steen hasn’t scored in two straight contests, which is significant because he normally doesn’t go two straight shifts without scoring. He did have six shots though.

 

*

 

Robin Lehner got the start for the Sens and looked strong making 30-of-32 saves. Craig Anderson’s been shaky this year so it will be interesting to see how Ottawa uses their netminders going forward.

 

Mika Zibanejad’s assist was his first point in five games and he played a season-high 18:58. He also got a solid 2:35 with the man advantage.

 

Bobby Ryan has been great this year. He had a goal and a helper against the Blues and has now had three multi-point efforts in his last five games.

 

Clarke MacArthur has quieted down and has now gone four games without a point.

 

*

 

The Avalanche punished the Stars 6-2 on Monday and Paul Stastny led the way with a four-point night. Stastny’s effort was somewhat surprising considering in his previous nine games he had failed to find the score sheet.

 

P.A. Parenteau also ended a rough patch, notching three assists after a four-game pointless run.

 

Nathan MacKinnon and Matt Duchene combined for three points and 14 shots on the night.

 

*

 

Kari Lehtonen conceded six goals for the Stars, but could hardly be faulted as Dallas gave up a whopping 48 shots.

 

Tyler Seguin stayed hot though picking up a goal and an assist.

 

Alex Chiasson, who showed some flashes of brilliance early in the season, is really fighting it now. He’s had just one point in six games and went minus-4 against Colorado.

 

*

 

The Chicago Blackhawks have activated Bryan Bickell from injured reserve and are targeting Friday for him to make his return to the lineup. To make room for Bickell the Blackhawks are sending Jeremy Morin to the American Hockey League.

 

Bickell has been up and down when he’s been healthy this season. In late October Bickell had goals in four straight games and looked like he was showing some of the brilliance he displayed last spring in the playoffs. However, he followed that up posting just one point in 11 games before going down with an injury. Chicago has been playing some good hockey as of late, winning four-of-five and scoring at a crazy pace, so it will be interesting to see how they utilize Bickell when he returns. He had been seeing plenty of time with Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews before he went down, but Kane has been clicking with Brandon Saad as of late. So hopefully if you’re a Saad owner Bickell’s return doesn’t throw him off track.

 

*

 

The Carolina Hurricanes will reportedly allow Elias Lindholm to play for Sweden at the World Junior Hockey Championship. Lindholm has seven points in 21 games this season.

 

*

 

Detroit Red Wings forward Johan Franzen won’t play against Anaheim on Tuesday because of a concussion. Franzen had gone three games without a point after recording 11 points in an eight-game stretch. Franzen joins fellow sidelined Wing forwards Henrik Zetterberg, Stephen Weiss, Darren Helm and Justin Abdelkader on the injured list, so look for some youngsters on their roster to take advantage of increased minutes.

 

*

 

Ilya Bryzgalov returned to the Edmonton goal on Sunday night and had a decent outing. The Oilers can’t have much confidence in Devan Dubnyk right now, so grabbing Bryzgalov isn’t a terrible move if you need goaltending help. It’s not so much that Dubnyk has been awful and he’s not exactly playing in the tightest of defensive systems, but he wasn’t bailing the team out with a key save here and there either. Bryzgalov is certainly a risk, but sometimes you have to make those in order to turn a fantasy hockey season around.

 

Michael Amato is an Associate Editor for DobberHockey and a News Editor for theScore. You can follow him on Twitter at @amato_mike


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Comments (6)add comment

Pengwin7 said:

Pengwin7
Nice Very good rambling, I enjoyed these, thanks!!!
December 17, 2013
Votes: +1

shingy said:

shingy
...
Thanks for the ramblings. Good work.
December 17, 2013
Votes: +1

ultrawhiteness said:

ultrawhiteness
good ramblings good ramblings.
December 17, 2013
Votes: +1

SeaDawg said:

SeaDawg
P.A. Parenteau "P.A. Parenteau also ended a rough patch, notching three assists after a four-game pointless run."

So happens I started Parenteau in my H2H league last week because he played 4 games, and he got 0 points in those four game. Bad timing for me. Coincidentally, I lost for the first time in 5 weeks in that league thanks to Parenteau's donut. Thrills me to no end that he puts up 3 pts in his first game since I benched in.
December 17, 2013
Votes: +1

Excelsior said:

Excelsior
... Mike,
I find the info you provide in most of your ramblings is info I can easily get every morning from boxscores ( goals, assists, streaks etc.) and injury reports from a site such as TSN.ca.

I just find your writeups lacking the fantasy relevance which Drance, Laidlaw and of course Dobber provide.
Stats I can get anywhere. I come here for the fantasy aspect.

I'm not trying to be negative, just honest. After a period of time of reading your ramblings, I now find myself skipping the ramblings on your days or skimming them hoping for some fantasy advice.
December 17, 2013
Votes: +2

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
... Why would Gaborik hurt Johansen? Maybe some PP time, but they play different positions. Gaborik (and Horton) returning will hurt two of Calvert, Umberger, or Foligno (which will trickle down to Jenner, Comeau, and Tropp).

Pens are missing 5 of their top 6 defensemen. So that's tough. They are also missing 3 top 6 forwards (Neal, Malkin, Bennett) and another lineup regular in Tanner Glass, and lost Jayson Megna for an extended period of time in the Toronto game (already ruled out of the Pens next game). Olli Maata will probably benefit the most in terms of PP time, and then Niskanen and Depres.

Nichuskin stayed productive, recording another point, and looks like he has earned his spot as a permanent fixture on the Stars top line.

Elias Lindholm for Carolina is a center, not a defenseman. Hampus Lindholm in Anaheim is a defenseman. Anyone else find it odd that Hampus has been more productive than Elias?
December 17, 2013
Votes: +2
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