Carolina’s Curtis McElhinney waited his flip to begin a playoff sport and now he is benefiting from it, whereas Logan Couture continues to attain at an Ovechkian tempo within the post-season.Carolina Hurricanes goalie Curtis McElhinney.|Getty ImagesLogan Couture is scoring targets, Curtis McElhinney is stopping them and David Savard has puck-sized bruises throughout his physique.
Right here’s a fast run via the playoff numbers to this point:
Logan Couture, San Jose: 9 targets in 12 gamesPlaying on a West Coast workforce that options the larger-than-life likes of Joe Thornton, Brent Burns and Erik Karlsson, Couture doesn’t all the time get the credit score he deserves. However the Sharks sniper has extra targets than anybody else this spring, and he trails solely Alex Ovechkin in playoff targets (50-43) since his first NHL post-season look in 2009-10. Couture has outscored Sidney Crosby (42), Patrick Kane (41), teammate Joe Pavelski (40) and Evgeni Malkin (39) in that span, and he’s on the verge of scoring double-digit playoff targets for the second time in 4 years.
Matt Nieto, Colorado: Two shorthanded targets in 10 gamesNieto scored all of 4 targets in 64-regular season video games, with a type of coming whereas the Avs have been shorthanded. Then the playoffs began, and Nieto has scored 4 targets in simply 10 video games, together with two shorties. Who does he suppose he’s? Nathan MacKinnon?
Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado: 23:42 ice time per gameSpeaking of the Avs celebrity, he’s main all NHL forwards in common ice time. At almost 24 minutes per sport – together with almost 5 minutes per sport on the ability play — MacKinnon is on the ice as typically as a top-pairing defenseman. After all, ice time might be exaggerated within the playoffs because of extra time, however MacKinnon additionally ranked within the high 10 amongst forwards in the course of the common season, skating simply over 22 minutes per sport. He likes to remain busy.
Curtis McElhinney, Carolina: .947 save percentageIt took some time for the 35-year-old to get his first playoff begin, however he’s proving to be well worth the wait. McElhinney changed an injured Petr Mrazek in Recreation 2 of the second spherical towards the Islanders, and now he’s Three-Zero within the post-season with a glowing .947 save proportion. Not unhealthy for a goalie the Hurricanes plucked off waivers in the beginning of the season.
Evander Kane, San Jose: 45 penalty minutes in 12 gamesYou’ve bought at hand it to Kane, the man’s constant. The Sharks winger led the league in penalty minutes in the course of the common season (153 in 75 video games) and he hasn’t missed a beat within the playoffs, main the way in which with 45 PIMs in 12 video games. To be truthful, almost half of his post-season penalty time have come courtesy of a few 10-minute misconducts, however he’s second in minor penalties assessed (eight), to not point out surviving a two-fisted, hold-on-to-your-head scrap with Vegas biggie Ryan Reaves.
Matt Duchene, Columbus: 29.four taking pictures percentageWhen you’ve bought 5 targets on 17 pictures in 9 video games, together with two game-winners and an extra time winner, you may need to take into account forsaking the go and as an alternative taking pictures the puck a bit extra typically. Matt Duchene, we’re taking a look at you.
Jaccob Slavin, Carolina: 11 assists in 11 gamesThe Hurricanes blueliner has gained a popularity as a high two-way defender over the previous few years, however he’s been extra about protection than offense. Slavin produced 20 factors in 63 video games as a rookie in 2015-16, after which posted totals of 34, 30 and 31 factors over the previous three seasons (all of which he performed a full 82-game schedule). However Slavin has discovered his interior Paul Coffey in his first NHL playoff expertise, main the post-season with 11 helpers. Notably, solely two of his 11 assists have come on the ability play, which helps to clarify his plus-Eight ranking that’s tied for one of the best this spring.
Warren Foegele, Carolina, and Roope Hintz, Dallas: 5 goalsIs there a Calder Trophy for the playoffs? Foegele scored 10 occasions in 77 video games as a rookie with the Hurricanes this season, Hintz scored 9 occasions in 58 video games as a rookie with the Stars. Put the children within the post-season, although, and so they’re hitting the mark, with each Foegele and Hintz pacing their respective groups with 5 targets apiece.
David Savard, Columbus: 33 blocked shotsNobody has stepped in entrance of extra high-velocity vulcanized rubber than Savard. Happily, he can conceal behind his Brent Burns-esque beard, safe within the information that not even a 100-mile-an-hour slapshot might penetrate its whiskered resilience. (Associated: Burns sits second in blocked pictures within the playoffs, proper behind Savard with 32.)
Patrice Bergeron, Boston: 63.2 p.c on faceoffsNobody’s received extra attracts within the playoffs than Bergeron, and no one wins them at the next charge. It certain helps the workforce once you begin most shifts with the puck in your stick reasonably than making an attempt to chase down your opponent.
Tags: nhl, playoffs, stanley cup playoffsConnect: In regards to the AuthorSam McCaigCopy editor Sam McCaig rejoined The Hockey Information in 2017 after beforehand working at THN from 1999 to 2010. His profession excessive for targets in a season is one.