Here we are in week five of the season. While some teams are climbing the standings, others are starting to realize that they are in for a long season. Here is a look at the latest player trends this past week.
Teemu Selanne – After contemplating retirement in the summer Selanne came back for one more season with the Ducks. It seems he made the right choice. Selanne currently leads the team with seven goals and 17 points in 15 games. The Ducks are on a three game win streak and Selanne holds a four game point streak with seven points. The veteran is an important contributor on the power play and is proving that he is not quite done yet.
Brandon Dubinsky – With five points in four games, Dubinsky now has 14 points in as many games. His 10 goals currently tie him for second in the early season goal scoring race. The left winger is taking on an important role and playing over 20 minutes per game as the Rangers continue to play without key players like Marian Gaborik, Chris Drury and Vaclav Prospal up front.
Jaroslav Halak – The St Louis Blues are the hottest team in the league, as they ride a seven game win streak and sit atop the Western Conference. This success can be largely attributed to Jaroslav Halak, who is off to a fantastic start with an 8-1-1 record. Halak already has three shut outs, and holds a 1.46 goals against average and .944 save percentage. Despite injuries to his team’s blue line the former Canadien backup has been getting help from a solid team defence, as the Blues have the lowest goals against average league wide at 1.42 gaoals against per gamed and also hold the lowest shots against average at 26.5 shots per game.
Raffi Torres – The Vancouver Canucks are the second hottest team in the league, holding a six game win streak. Torres was a major contributor to the streak last week, with five points in three games including a hat trick. He now has seven goals and nine points in 13 games for Vancouver. Vancouver brought him in for his gritty style of play but his offensive production he has been a great bonus for the off season addition.
Alexander Ovechkin – The Washington Capitals have won four straight, and find themselves in a familiar spot at first in the Eastern Conference. Currently, Ovechkin is on a six game point streak with 10 points. All the big guns are working for the Capitals as they look to continue their dominance from last season as Alexander Semin and Mike Green take honorable mention here.
Phil Kessel – The Leafs have lost five straight games, as the reality of a long season settles in for Toronto. Their superstar winger Kessel has no points over the five game stretch and holds a -2 rating.
Jarome Iginla – Iginla has only two assists in his last five games and is -4 over that span. The Flames have now lost four straight with head coach Brent Sutter calling out his veterans after a 3rd period meltdown last week. So far Iginla has failed to carry the offense as he has in the past.
Jean-Pierre Dumont – Dumont has seen his ice time decrease in Nashville since last year and has struggled to earn it back. With one assist in his last nine games, the Predators will need more contribution from Dumont if he ever wants to find the top line again .
Josh Bailey – After a hot start, the young forward seems to have cooled off. Bailey has no points in six games since returning from his hip injury which forced him to miss two games. Worse still, Bailey hold a -6 rating over his last four games. The Islanders have now lost seven straight, as they continue to slip in the standings. Both injuries and the loss of ice time to John Tavares seemed to have taken their toll on this youngster.
Scott Gomez – With no points in seven games and only three points in his first 14 games, Gomez is off to a slow start in Montreal. Habs fans are not happy with his production as much more is expected from the high-priced center. It seems that coach Jacques Martin is trying everything to get Gomez out of his early season funk, including separating him from longtime line-mate Brian Gionta.