NHL Weekly Stock Up, Stock Down: 12/10-12/16

NHL Weekly Stock Up, Stock Down: 12/10-12/16

by December 18, 2021 1 comment

The NHL has continued to dominate the news cycle over the last week. With Covid-19 beginning to loom large over the league once again, multiple teams have been shut down or had games postponed. These clubs include the Calgary Flames, Colorado Avalanche, and the Carolina Hurricanes. With positive tests popping up all over, many star players have been forced to miss time after entering the protocols.

Back with our weekly stock up, stock down article, the Toronto Maple Leafs remain red hot. Winners of three of their last four games, the group is tied with the Tampa Bay Lightning for the most points in hockey. Furthermore, the Anaheim Ducks have captured four of their last five games to sit alone atop the Pacific Division. The Nashville Predators have also made a charge up the standings while riding a six-game winning streak.

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Stock Up: St. Louis Blues 

The Blues have rolled along over the last week. The team has claimed points in each of their last five contests. Additionally, St. Louis has also earned at least one point in 9 of their last 10 as well. Led up front by Vladimir Tarasenko, Pavel Buchnevich, and Ivan Barbashev, the trio have collectively scored 30 goals through the Blues opening 29 games.

Remaining one of the stingiest clubs in the league in their own end, St Louis has given up just six goals over their last four games while surrendering just 2.69 on average all year long. Clicking on special teams, Craig Berube‘s team is ranked in the top ten in the NHL in both power play and penalty kill percentage. Pair that with the outstanding goaltending provided by Jordan Binnington and Ville Husso, and you’ve got a club that is beginning to catch fire after fighting through an outbreak early on.

Stock Down: Edmonton Oilers

The Oilers fell to fourth place in the Pacific Division. The team lost their last five games before defeating the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-2 on Thursday Night. Quiet over their losing streak, the superstar duo of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl combined to rack up just five points. Struggling to generate production behind the duo, free-agent acquisition Zach Hyman is still sidelined by a shoulder injury.

Along with this, after clicking at a 40 plus percent rate on the power play to begin the season, the group has begun to fall back to normal with the extra man. They have converted just 20 percent of their opportunities of late. Edmonton will likely get goaltender Mike Smith back in goal to help the struggling Mikko Koskinen in between the pipes. Still a special group with the two Hart Trophy leaders anchoring their lead lines up front, general manager Ken Holland has some work left to do to push his group to surefire Stanley Cup contenders.

Stock Up: Nashville Predators

A team not thought of by many as a potential contender in the loaded Central Division, the Predators are exceeding expectations. Sitting in a tie for second place, the group has won seven of their last eight games. Off to a hot start, forward Matt Duchene leads the team with 13 goals. Along with this, Mikael Granlund has recorded 22 assists to pace the club.

Picking up right where he left off after a Norris-caliber season a year ago, Roman Josi has continued to cement himself as one of the best blueliners in the game, with 28 points in 29 games. Currently ranked top five in the NHL in shots allowed, Juuse Saros has been rock solid in goal. The 26-year-old ranks inside the top ten in both wins and shutouts.

Stock Down: Winnipeg Jets

The Jets are suddenly sitting three points out of the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference. They have dropped three of their last four games, including losses to the Seattle Kraken and the Buffalo Sabres. Making matters worse, the franchise made headlines around the league on Friday afternoon after long-time head coach Paul Maurice stepped down after eight seasons.

They are still without captain Blake Wheeler as he makes his way back from a knee injury. Off to career starts, sniper Kyle Connor and center Pierre-Luc Dubois have helped the team battle through inconsistent play. The duo has combined to rack up 57 points through the season’s quarter mark. However, Winnipeg still sits 15th in the league in goals for and 18th in the shooting percentage as they search for consistency.

Stock Up: Vancouver Canucks

The Canucks looked like they were once again headed for another underwhelming season after missing the playoffs five of the last six years. Among the bottom of the NHL through 25 games, the franchise decided to part ways with head coach Travis Green and General Manager Jim Benning in an organizational shakeup.

Choosing to hire former Washington Capitals head coach Bruce Boudreau as their new bench boss, the team has begun to roll under the guidance of the 66-year-old. Winners of their last six games, Vancouver defeated the Hurricanes, followed by back-to-back victories over the Blue Jackets and the San Jose Sharks. Looking rejuvenated, Brock Boeser has five points in his last five games, while captain Bo Horvat has added three goals over that stretch of time.

Stock Down: Dallas Stars

The Stars remain one of the hardest clubs across the league to gauge. They limped out of the gate to a 6-7-2 start before rattling off seven wins in a row to climb to the top of the Central Division. However, the group has lost four games in a row and now sits six points out of the final playoff spot. Carrying on throughout the season, the team has struggled to generate offense and put the puck in the back of the net.

Currently ranked 25th in the NHL in goals per game with just 2.65 averaged per contest, Dallas is also near the bottom of the league in both shots on goal and shooting percentage. Bailed out by their stellar goaltending tandem of Braden Holtby and Jake Oettinger, the former has posted a .923 save percentage while the latter has racked up a 1.88 goals-against average. Needing to find a spark upfront; until the group can get better play out of their underperforming veterans, they have a better chance at landing in the draft lottery than in the postseason.

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