This article is part of our NHL Barometer series.
This week's article includes the "other" center in Pittsburgh, a Winnipeg blueliner stepping up, the new No. 1 netminder in Calgary and last year's second overall pick scuffling in Carolina.
First Liners (Risers)
Evgeni Malkin, C, PIT – Malkin sometimes gets lost in Sidney Crosby's shadow, but he is an elite center in his own right. After posting 58 points in 57 games in 2015-16, Malkin notched 72 in 62 games the following year before tallying 98 points last year – his most since 2011-12. Malkin, the 2004 second overall pick. has struggled slightly this season but appears to be waking up with two goals and nine points in his last six games, giving him 14 goals and 49 points in 45 contests.
Jonathan Toews, C, CHI – Toews had seen his production decline the past several seasons. After posting 68 points in 2013-14, Toews' output dropped to 66, then 58 the following two seasons before declining to 52 last year. Toews got off to a red-hot start this season before running into rough times, but he has scored at least one point in nine of his last 10 contests and is now up to 18 goals and 24 assists in 48 games. The Blackhawks as a team are enduring a rough campaign, but their captain has turned back the clock slightly.
Jake Guentzel, LW, PIT – Guentzel was a revelation in his rookie campaign, posting 16 goals and 17 assists in 40 games. That output