This is the final article of the regular season. Please provide any comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Thanks for reading this season.
Highlighted players include the "No. 2 center" in Boston having another stellar campaign, a pair of Red Wings lighting it up in Hockeytown, a young D-man in Colorado excelling and another Blackhawk down for the season.
First Liners (Risers)
Andrew Shaw, C, CHI - Someone has to step up with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane out, so why not Shaw? Shaw has seen most of his time on the third line, recently ascending to the second and now gets his shot with Kris Versteeg and Marian Hossa. He has added value in leagues that play hits, blocked shots and/or penalty minutes.
Patrice Bergeron, C, BOS - If you look up the definition of a perfect second line center, you will find Bergeron's picture. He scores - as seen in him notching at least one goal in seven-consecutive games and nine goals plus five assists in his 10-game point-streak - and defends, as seen in him being a perennial Selke Award finalist along with a career-best-tying plus-36 rating.
Gustav Nyquist, C, DET - Nyquist to the rescue again Wednesday against Boston. He scored the game-winning goal, keeping the Red Wings in a playoff position. That goal extended his point streak to 10 games, during which he has lit the lamp in nine of those contests, tallying 12 goals in that span. Nyquist has 23 goals and 36 points his last 28 games.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, C, EDM - RNH is a streaky scorer and lately, he has been on a hot streak. Nugent-Hopkins has 10 points in his last eight games, giving him 18 goals and 35 assists. The 53 points is a career high, besting the 52 he posted two years ago as a rookie.
Anze Kopitar, C, LA - Kopitar continued his hot recent play with a goal and assist Wednesday. He hasn't gone more than one game without a point since Dec. 19 and now has 65 points and a plus-30 rating in 77 games on the season.
Bryan Little, C, WPG - Little failed to score Thursday ending his point-streak at seven. Despite not tallying a point, Little has a career-high 62 points in 78 games this season.
Michael Cammalleri, C, CGY - Michael Cammalleri continued his hot play, notching a goal and an assist Thursday. He has 18 points in his last 13 games and has gone plus-11 in his last 11 contests.
Derek Stepan, C, NYR - Stepan notched his first goal in six games Thursday, but that tally extended his career high in points. The Rangers' top center now has 16 goals and 38 assists for 54 points, with the assists also a career high.
John Mitchell, C, COL - Mitchell isn't a big time scorer but has been effective in all situations. He is getting the chance at filling the role as second-line center with Matt Duchene sidelined at least four weeks with his knee injury,
Mikko Koivu, C, MIN - Koivu scored the game-winning goal and had an assist against the Kings on Monday, extending his point streak to six games, which ended Thursday against Chicago. Despite failing to notch a point against the Blackhawks, Koivu still has 12 points his last nine games, giving him 49 points in 60 games.
Jordan Eberle, RW, EDM - Like his linemate RNH, Eberle has been streaky this year, and like RNH, he has been hot of late. Eberle had a goal and two assists Tuesday and added a goal Thursday, giving him five goals and five assists his last seven contests. Overall, based on pre-season expectations, he has a disappointing 60 points in 75 games, but he looks to be ending the season strong.
Tomas Tatar, RW, DET - If Nyqvist has been Batman for the Red Wings, Tatar has been Robin. Tatar notched a goal and an assist Wednesday against the Boston. That tally gave Tatar eight points in his last six outings, and a line of 19/17/36 in 67 games on the season, most of which have come the past few months.
Beau Bennett, RW, PIT - Bennett returned from his wrist injury and conditioning assignment on March 28. Since coming back to the Penguins, Bennett has scored two goals and an assist in four games, including his third goal of the season Thursday while playing on a line with Sidney Crosby and James Neal.
Ondrej Palat, LW, TB - The Palat show rolls on in Tampa. He notched the only goal for the Lightning in their 4-1 loss to Calgary on Thursday. He now has 17 points, including six goals, in his last 13 games.
Corey Perry, RW, ANA - Perry notched two goals and the game-winning assist Wednesday. Those two goals gave Perry 41 goals, second in the league, and his 78 points are tied for thir in the NHL.
Patrick Marleau, LW, SJ - Marleau scored his 32nd of the season Tuesday, which is tied for 10th in the league. In addition, Marleau, the second overall pick by San Jose in 1997, has 67 points on the season, showing no signs of slowing.
Patrick Maroon, LW, ANA - Many leagues are won by late-season sneaky pickups and Maroon may fall into that category, He had two assists Monday, giving him eight points during his five-game point streak that ended Wednesday.
Carl Soderberg, LW, BOS - Soderberg, who missed Thursday's game against Toronto for the birth of his child, has been red-hot lately. He has tallied three goals in his past four games, while also recording two assists over that span, giving him 16 goals and 30 assists in 68 games this year.
Curtis Glencross, LW, CGY - Two goals Thursday gives him 23 points in 33 games this year.
Ryan Callahan, RW, TB - Continues to produce, taking advantage of playing with Palat and Filppula as well as time on the man-advantage, which he wasn't getting in New York with the Rangers.
Marian Gaborik, RW, LA - Ten points in 14 games as a King, Gaborik has meshed nicely on a line with Anze Kopitar, giving LA the offensive weapon they desperately needed.
Josh Bailey, LW, NYI - Bailey remains red-hot, notching a goal and an assist Wednesday. Both points came on the man-advantage and he now has six points in his last five games.
Joe Colborne, LW, CGY - Colborne, one-time, an elite prospect and 2008 first-round pick by the Bruins, has for the most part been unable to translate that talent into production in the NHL. Lately, though, he has been hot, notching six goals and five assists in 16-games in March and an assist his first game in April
Cody Franson, D, TOR - Franson notched two assists Thursday against the Bruins, extending his point streak to three games in which he has scored four points (one goal, three assists). Toronto is battling for a playoff spot and Franson will need to stay hot to help that chase.
Tyson Barrie, D, COL - Barrie notched his 11th of the year Thursday, and then in his first shootout attempt of the season, beat Henrik Lundqvist for Colorado's only tally and the game-winner. Barrie has 34 points in 59 games along with a plus-15 rating.
Matt Donovan, D, NYI - Donovan has steeped up for the Islanders lately, scoring six points in his last nine games.
Stephane Robidas, D, ANA - Robidas missed three-and-a-half months with a broken fibula, and during that timeframe, he was traded from Dallas to Anaheim. He made his Ducks debut on March 18, and is the past six games, he has a goal and four assists.
James Wisniewski, D, CMB - Wisniewski notched a goal and an assist Thursday helping the Blue Jackets shut out the Flyers 2-0. He now has 46 points, just five behind his career high set in 2001-11, with 25 of those points coming on the power play.
Alex Goligoski, D, DAL - Goligoski's producton has been up-and-down all season, but despite that, he has set a career high in points with 38 on the season.
Ben Bishop, G, TB - Despite the loss to Calgary on Thursday, Bishop is 7-2-1 in his last 10 games. His 37 wins are second in the league to Semyon Varlamov.
Marc-Andre Fleury, G, PIT - The Flower made 13 saves in a 4-2 win over Winnipeg on Thursday. That victory gave Fleury 37 on the year, two behind Varlamov for most in the league.
Carey Price, G, MON - The Gold Medal winning goalie for Canada has been at the top of his game lately. Price has nine wins in his past 11 starts, notching two shutputs in that stretch.
Anders Nilsson, G, NYI - Nilsson picked up his third straight Wednesday, and with the Islanders looking to build for the future, they should run the kid out there every game the rest of the way to see what they have.
Training Room (Injuries)
Pavel Datsyuk, C, DET - Datsyuk, sidelined since Feb. 27 with a knee injury, will play for the Red Wings on Friday. He's slated to center the second line with Darren Helm and Justin Abdelkader and will be a big boost to a Detroit team that's in seventh in the conference.
Tomas Hertl, C, SJ - Hertl, who had his MCL and PCL repaired on December 31, skated without a non-contact practice jersey Wednesday. The original projections were that he would miss six-to-none months, so Hertl is on pace to well exceed that timeframe, but there is no guarantee he returns to the lineup, even during the playoffs.
Jonathan Toews, C, CHI - Toews, injured when he blasted legally into the boards by Brooks Orpik on March 30, will miss the balance of the regular season. The good news is that Blackhawks Captain, who scored 68 points in 76 games, is expected to be back for the playoffs.
Mikael Granlund, C, MIN - Granlund is sidelined indefinitely and likely is out the balance of the season with what's believed to be a concussion, suffered after his face collided with Jarrett Stoll during an attempted check Monday. Unfortunately, this is Granlund's second concussion of the season, as he missed 13 games earlier this year with a similar injury. He will finish his first full season with eight goals and 33 assists in 63 games.
Alexander Steen, C, STL - Steen sat out Thursday's game with an upper-body injury. The ailment is not supposed to be serious and Steen, who has 33 goals and 27 assists on the year, could play Saturday against the Avalanche as the Blues try and lock down the No. 1 seed out West.
Joffrey Lupul, LW, TOR - Lupul missed Thursday's game with a lower-body injury. It's not clear how long Lupul will be sidelined for Toronto, who kept their playoff hopes alive with a 4-3 OT win over Boston.
Zach Parise, LW, MIN - Parise took a blow to the head Thursday against the Blackhawks and it sounds as if he may have suffered a mild concussion. Minnesota is battling to try and make the playoffs, with a five point lead over Phoenix with five games to go, but the Wild may be without their main weapon up front.
Jonathan Huberdeau, LW, FLA - Huberdeau, sidelined since March 16 with an upper-body injury, could be back in the lineup Sunday against Dallas. His sophomore year has been a disaster, with just 27 points in 66 games, but at least he may get a shot to close it out on a high note.
Ryan McDonagh, D, NYR - McDonagh was injured Tuesday when he hit into the boards by Alexandre Burrows when he was already engaged with Zack Kassian. Mack Truck suffered a left shoulder injury on the play, but luckily, appears to have avoided any structural damage. McDonagh, who has 14 goals and 29 assists, is listed as day-to-day.
Paul Martin, D, PIT - Martin, out since Feb. 7 with a hand injury, re-joined the Pittsburgh lineup Thursday. With Kris Letang still sidelined and Olli Maatta struggling, Martin, who was averaging 24:23 of ice time before the injury, was a welcome addition to the Penguins' blueline. He made an immediate impact scoring a power-play goal, which proved to be the game-winner.
Cam Fowler, D, ANA - Fowler, out since March 14 with a sprained MCL in his left knee, could be back in action next week. Te injury was expected to sidelined Fowler 3-to-5 weeks, so a return next week would be on the lower end of that scale.
Jonathan Bernier, G, TOR - Bernier was injured Thursday when Paul Ranger pushed Patrice Bergeron into him. The injury is being classified as a lower-body one and Bernier will undergo an MRI to Friday to determine the extent. James Reimer will start in place of Bernier while he is sidelined.
Roberto Luongo, G, FLA - Luongo, who has missed the past three games with a concussion, could play Friday against Flames. His symptoms have subsided, but Florida could opt to be cautious and have him remain sidelined.
Fourth Liners/Press Boxers (Fallers)
Derek Roy, C, STL - Roy's horrific campaign continued Thursday when he was moved down to the fourth line against the Sabres. He failed to score again Thursday and now has just one assist his past 15 games and 37 points in 71 on the year.
Jeff Carter, C, LA - Carter is going through a bit of a rough patch. His goal and assist Wednesday was his first multi-point effort in the past 12 games. In addition, the goal was just his third in the same stretch, but he has had 42 shots in those dozen games, so it shouldn't be long before he turns it around.
Alex Killorn, C, TB - Killorn has scored twice in his last four games, but prior to that, he failed to light the lamp in 12 straight contests.
Michael Ryder, RW, NJD - It's Ryder or it's wrong, and lately, it's been all wrong for the Devils winger. Ryder has just one goal in his last 30 games and has seen time recently on the fourth line.
Colin Wilson, LW, NAS - Wilson tallied 19 points in 25 games last year before an upper-body injury (shoulder) sidelined him the balance of the season. He was a pre-season sleeper, but all he has done is be somnambulant, notching just 28 points in 75 games this season, including one his last 10 contests.
David Clarkson, LW, TOR - What does seven years ant $5.25 million per get you? If you are Toronto and signed Clarkson, it nets you five goals, six assists and a minus-12 rating with one goal since February 4. Can you say possible amnesty?
Drew Doughty, D, LA - Doughty, who was so good in the Olympics, has been unable to translate that success back to NHL action. His goal Wednesday gave him just six points in 16 games since Sochi and just three in his last 10 contests. In addition, he left Thursday's game with what looked to be a shoulder injury, so check his status.
Francois Beauchemin, D, ANA - Beauchemin did notch the game-winner Wednesday, but that tally ended an eight-game-long pointless streak and 11-game-long goalless streak for the Ducks d-man.
Jonas Hiller, G, ANA - Hiller may just be getting a rest as the playoffs approach, but Frederik Andersen has started three straight games, all wins for the Ducks. Prior to that stretch, Hiller had struggled, so while we don't think there is a goaltending controversy in Anaheim, if Hiller continues to struggle and Andersen plays well ...
Ben Scrivens G, EDM - Scrivens has allowed five goals in three of his last four games and has lost six of his last eight decisions for the Oilers. It wouldn't be surprising to see Viktor Fasth see most of the starts down the stretch for Edmonton.