News: Brett Bellemore scored his first goal of the season and collected five PIM in Friday's win over Washington. Analysis: Brett Bellemore now has six points and a plus-3 rating in 33 games on the season. Considering the defenseman averages just 15:32 of ice time and has only recorded 16 shots on goal, Bellmore is only valuable in the deepest of fantasy leagues.
News: Kari Lehtonen was porous again Friday, giving up four goals on just 23 shots in a 5-4 shootout loss to the visiting Avalanche. Analysis: What the heck happened to this guy? His most notable blunder of the evening came in the third period, when he coughed up two goals in 1:15 to erase a 3-1 lead for the Stars. Kari Lehtonen has been roughed up for 14 goals over the last three games and now owns a .905 save percentage -- the worst of his 11-year career -- and a 2.97 GAA, second worst to only his ghastly 2008-09 season with the now defunct Atlanta Thrashers. With all this in mind, you'll want to proceed with caution with Lehtonen going forward, especially since the Stars continue to roll on without Tyler Seguin (lower body), their most prolific offensive weapon who, when healthy, is the most likeliest of Stars to bail the Finnish netminder out with his scoring prowess.
News: David Rundblad registered his 10th assist on the season on Thursday in the Blackhawks' 3-0 victory over the Panthers. Analysis: David Rundblad has three goals and 10 assists in 40 games for the Blackhawks in his first full season for Chicago after coming over from Arizona. It's his best season by far for the 24-year-old defenseman in his sixth NHL season. Rundblad only had a goal and eight assists in five previous seasons with two other clubs where he was shuttled between the NHL team and the minor leagues. After being a healthy scratch on Feb. 20, Rundblad has collected a pair of assists in his last four games.
News: Semyon Varlamov gave up four goals on 36 shots but came away the winner as the Avs outlasted the Stars 5-4 in a shootout Friday. Analysis: Talk about fortunate -- Varly has now won three of his last four games despite having given up 13 goals during that span. He's getting a ton of offensive support from the Colorado offense, although it's probably too-little, too-late as the Avs sit soundly out of a playoff spot at six points back. Still, coach Patrick Roy is going to fight until the bitter end this season, which means Semyon Varlamov is going to continue to see almost all of the starts in Denver, giving him every opportunity for wins and to improve his .917 save percentage and 2.68 GAA.
News: Scott Darling was victimized for four goals on 29 shots by the league's highest scoring team in a 4-0 loss to Tampa Bay on Friday. Analysis: Because he's only been between the pipes nine times this season, his GAA actually spiked from 1.96 to 2.18 after this one. Still, Scott Darling has been quite serviceable when called upon in relief of Corey Crawford and/or Antti Raanta, posting a 6-3-0 record and a .930 save percentage. We'd love to recommend him as one of the best streaming options among backup goaltenders, but with the Blackhawks' recent inconsistency and the fact that Antti Raanta is lurking at AHL Rockford waiting to be recalled, Darling is probably best suited to your watch list.
News: Jason Garrison set up a pair of goals in Friday's 4-0 shutout of the visiting Blackhawks. Analysis: The big d-man set up both of Steven Stamkos' tallies in this one, grabbing the primary assist on each. Jason Garrison has four points in the last four games and appears to be fully recovered from the lower body injury that kept him out of two matches on Feb. 7 and 8.
News: Steven Stamkos potted two goals on seven shots in Friday's impressive 4-0 shutout of the visiting Blackhawks. He now has 34 tallies on the year, three back of Rick Nash and five behind Alex Ovechkin for the league lead. Analysis: Stammer has cranked things up over the last couple weeks, bagging six goals in his last seven games. He's never been a strong plus/minus guy with a career minus-2 rating (he's also a minus-2 this year) and even though his 23 assists are nothing to write home about this season, he's simply one of the most lethal goal scorers in the game. Steven Stamkos appears to be really finding his groove here, so don't be surprised if he goes off for something like a point-and-a-half per game in the final 19 contests of the season.
News: David Clarkson will skate on the Blue Jackets' top line with Ryan Johansen and Nick Foligno on Saturday, Shawn Mitchell of the Columbus Dispatch reports. Analysis: The Jackets are really rolling out the welcome mat for the new guy. Given David Clarkson's woeful performance in Toronto there's no reason to rush to your waiver wire yet based on this news, but this is a player with a 30-goal season on his resume. If Clarkson does show any signs of life in his new uniform, he could be worth scooping up.
News: Ben Bishop picked up his second shutout of the season Friday, turning aside all 28 shots in a 4-0 win over the visiting Blackhawks. Analysis: Ben Bishop thoroughly enjoyed quieting the scores of red-clad Blackhawks fans that invaded Amalie Arena in this one, picking up his fourth win in a row. He now has 32 victories on the season in 48 appearances, and even though his .914 save percentage and 2.36 GAA are 26th and 15th in the NHL (respectively), he's trending upwards on one of the league's best teams and should be rolled out at every opportunity.
News: Justin Holl, who is in his first professional season in the Blackhawks' organization, was recalled by AHL's Rockford from the ECHL's Indy Fuel on Thursday, the Rockford IceHogs website reports. Analysis: Justin Holl, 22, has recorded four goals and 19 assists with the Fuel. Holl was selected in the second round (number 54 overall) of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft by the Blackhawks. He spent four seasons at the University of Minnesota where he played mainly defense, but the Gophers tried him at forward in his senior year. It was a failure with only three goals and four assists in 35 games. This will be his first go around in the AHL. If he impresses at Rockford this season, he could get a look for the Blackhawks in 2015-16 if there is a shake-up in the defensive corps.