This article is part of our NHL Barometer series.
This week's article includes a Kings' first-round pick producing, another Canadian Drake rolling, the Ghost showing signs of life, Rask resurrecting his career, the Tank returning soon and several veterans scuffling.
First Liners (Risers)
Gabriel Vilardi, C, LA – Vilardi, drafted 11th overall in 2017, battled back problems that threatened to cut short his career. Finally healthy, Vilardi had a cup of coffee with the Kings, playing 10 games last season and tallying three goals and four assists. Starting this season on the third line, Vilardi, who possesses a lightning-fast trigger on his shots, started slowly but has found his groove recently, picking up two goals and three apples in his last seven games as he settles into a top-six role.
Andrew Mangiapane, LW, CGY – Mangiapane took a major step forward with 17 goals and 15 assists last season, skating opposite Matthew Tkachuk on the second line. He is proving that breakthrough was no fluke, notching his sixth goal in the last 12 games with a shorthanded marker and an assist Saturday. This season, Mangiapane has a solid eight goals and 12 points in 23 games, putting him on pace to see career highs in goals and points. Continue to roll with him with confidence, especially in deeper leagues, as he also has 18 hits and 17 blocked shots.
Drake Batherson, RW, OTT – It's Batherson's world and we are all just living in it, as he extended his goal-streak to six with a pair