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Week 6 schedule analysis

by | Rotowire.com
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The NHL schedule has been anything but predictable. Perhaps it's Detroit's reassignment to the Eastern Conference, but it seems the Western Conference has taken the alpha role one month into the season. Headed into Friday's (11/1/13) action 10 of the 16 Eastern Conference had a record above .500 while the Western Conference, who has a gaudy combined record of 57-21-10 in home games, has just three teams of the same futility. With the beginning of the month just having passed, we felt a weekly and monthly perspective was needed.

*All teams include (this week's schedule, home/away totals for the month; BOLD indicates back-to-back occurrence).

NHL schedule

Four Aces

Anaheim (at NYR, PHX, BUF VAN-6H/9A) Ducks will play four games including the two very different teams (Buffalo, Phoenix) on the back end of back-to-back nights.

Edmonton (at FLA, at TB, at PHI, at CHI- 6H/7A) goes on a Florida swing before sweeping up to Philly and Chicago to end the week, yikes.

Florida (EDM, at BOS, at OTT, at NYR-6H/9A) is hosting Edmonton on Tuesday before playing eight of their next nine games on the road over the next 19 days. Opponents include Boston, Ottawa, the Avs and Canucks to name a few.

The second-place Islanders (at WAS, at CAR, at CLS, at MON-7H/8A) have five of their next 6 on the road. Sooner or later these guys are going to need an upgrade or veteran depth of some kind at the goalie position.

The Rangers (ANH, PIT, at CLS, FLA- 8H/7A) start November with seven of their first 10 at the Garden.

The Vancouver Canucks (at PHX, at SJ, at LA, at ANH-7H/6A) finally extended the Sedins, how will they react?

The beginning and end of the week will be most trying for the Washington Capitals (NYI, MIN, at PHX, at COL- 8H/7A).

Back-To-Back

Buffalo (at SJ, at LA, at ANH- 7H/6A), New Jersey (at PHI, at TOR, NAS-7H/8A) and Phoenix (VAN, at ANH, WAS- 6H/6A) all have games on back-to-back nights.

One Pair

Tampa Bay (EDM, at DET- 6H/8A) plays 14 games in the month of November and is one of four teams playing just a pair of tilts this week.

Los Angeles (BUF, VAN-7H/6A will host the Sabres and Canucks before a four-game East Coast swing.

Pittsburgh (at NYR, at STL- 6H/9A) has no trend, spending most of a busy 15-game month on two and three game road trips.

Toronto (NJ, at BOS) has just 13 games this month, five on the road to start, beginning with playing on back-to-back nights this week.

Three of a Kind

Aside from the streaking Colorado (NAS, CAL, WAS) Avalanche, who play three easy tilts at home, here are some teams playing vanilla (3 games) schedules not only this week, but have a 13-15 game schedule in the month of November.

After visiting the Jets on Monday, Detroit (at WPG, DAL, TB-8H/6A) heads home for seven of their next 8 games and the competition includes inconsistent teams like the Stars, Jets, Caps, Preds, Canes and Sens.

Nashville (at COL, at WPG, at NJ- 5H/9A) is in the midst of a seven-game road trip. After catching their breath against the Wings on the 19th, Preds visit Toronto on the 21st then play four of their last five at home in November.

Philadelphia (at CAR, NJ, EDM - 7H/8A) will play six of their first eight games in November on the road.

Ottawa (at CLS, MON, FLA-9H/5A) will host seven of their first eight games this month.

San Jose (BUF, VAN, at WPG-8H/5A) starts with three at home, five on the road, and then five at home to close out the month.

After traveling to Montreal, St. Louis (at MTL, CAL, PIT-7H/8A) heads home for seven of next 10 contests.

The Calgary (at MIN, at STL, at COL-7H/7A) Flames flip flop most of the month, a few 3 game trends, but nothing that sticks out.

Carolina (PHI, NYI, MIN-9H/5A) begins the month with a five game homestand, starting with three very winnable games.

Two Pair

Dallas (at BOS, at DET, CHI-5H/7A) is the team with the shortest (fewest games) straw this month and beginning with a troubling trio of games this week.

Columbus (OTT, NYR, NYI-7H/9A) has a 16-game schedule this month, so Blue Jacket fans and management should find out early what the commitment is there.

The defending Eastern Conference champion Boston Bruins (DAL, FLA, TOR-10H/5A) are playing 10 out of 15 games this month from TD Garden, including a five game home-stand starting this week with a few cupcakes coming into town. If we were betting men, and we are, put your money on Claude Julien's B's.

The Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks (WPG, at DAL, EDM-5H/10A) bear an exactly opposite fate in November, after playing four of their first six at home, eight of their final nine games in the month are on the road.

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Player News
P.K. Subban
Habs' Subban A Norris Finalist
P.K. Subban, D, MON
2:56 AM
News: P.K. Subban was named as one of the three finalists for the Norris Trophy, which is awarded to the NHL's top defenseman, the Montreal Gazette reports.
Analysis: P.K. Subban joins Ottawa's Erik Karlsson and Los Angeles' Drew Doughty as the three blue-liners being considered. Subban won the award in 2013.

Sven Baertschi
Canucks Reassign Baertschi
Sven Baertschi, LW, VAN
12:58 AM
News: Sven Baertschi was reassigned to AHL Utica on Monday.
Analysis: The 22-year-old skated for the Canucks in two games during the team's first-round playoff series against the Flames, his former organization. He didn't make much of an impact while seeing a grand total of 19:19 of action across the two games, but should be primed to receive heavier minutes for Utica, who is in the midst of a first-round series of its own against Chicago.

Brad Richardson
Canucks' Richardson Ticketed For Ankle Surgery
Brad Richardson, C, VAN
12:55 AM
News: Brad Richardson will undergo surgery to repair a fractured ankle next week, Jon Abbott of TSN 1040 reports.
Analysis: Brad Richardson was able to suit up for the Canucks' final two games of their first-round series defeat to the Flames, but was consistently hobbled by the injured ankle during the second half of the season. The forward, who also will require a procedure to address ligament damage to the ankle, is slated to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. The surgery shouldn't prevent him from being ready for the start of training camp with any organization he might join.

Jannik Hansen
Canucks' Hansen Played Through Groin Injury
Jannik Hansen, RW, VAN
12:50 AM
News: Jannik Hansen acknowledged Monday that he played through the Canucks' first-round playoff series against the Flames with a groin injury, Brad Ziemer of the Vancouver Sun reports.
Analysis: Jannik Hansen labeled it as a minor injury, but it will still prevent him from participating with Denmark in the World Championships in May. The winger tallied two points in the season-ending Game 6 loss Saturday, giving him four points during the postseason. The 29-year-old is still under contract with the Canucks for three more seasons.

Mikael Granlund
Wild's Granlund Contributes Assist In Game 6 Win
Mikael Granlund, C, MIN
12:48 AM
News: Mikael Granlund posted a secondary assist in Sunday's win over the Blues.
Analysis: Mikael Granlund is a proven playmaker, as evidenced by his 80 assists from the past two seasons combined. He'll look to carry the positive momentum over to the next series, against the Blackhawks.

David Pastrnak
Bruins' Pastrnak Day-To-Day
David Pastrnak, RW, BOS
12:36 AM
News: David Pastrnak was forced out of AHL Providence's playoff game Sunday with a lower-body injury, csnne.com reports.
Analysis: David Pastrnak, who is currently seeing some AHL playoff action, with Boston having failed to qualify for the postseason, absorbed a check Sunday during overtime that sent him to the locker room. Fortunately, his injury doesn't appear to be serious and he is day-to-day in advance of Tuesday's Game 4 against Hartford. The 18-year-old is coming off a season in which he recorded 10 goals and 27 points in 46 games for the big club, displaying a nice blend of speed, creativity and offensive instincts that bode well for his future production at the NHL level, as he continues to fill out physically.

Niklas Lundstrom
Blues Reassign Lundstrom To Minors
Niklas Lundstrom, G, STL
12:32 AM
News: Niklas Lundstrom was reassigned to AHL Chicago on Monday.
Analysis: Niklas Lundstrom was with the Blues for their first-round series loss to the Wild, serving strictly as an emergency depth goalie. After spending most of the 2014-15 campaign at the ECHL level, where he went 17-16-2 with a 3.05 GAA and .895 save percentage, Lundstrom probably won't see much involvement for Chicago during their postseason run.

Ty Rattie
Blues' Rattie Reassigned
Ty Rattie, RW, STL
12:30 AM
News: Ty Rattie was reassigned to AHL Chicago on Monday.
Analysis: With the NHL squad officially eliminated from the playoffs with a loss Sunday to the Wild, Ty Rattie will join Chicago, which remains in the midst of its first-round series with Utica. Rattie, who didn't see any action with the Blues in their six postseason games, finished third on Chicago in scoring during the regular season, netting 21 goals and 42 points in 59 games.

Marco Scandella
Wild's Scandella Maintaining Impressive Rating
Marco Scandella, D, MIN
12:29 AM
News: Marco Scandella was plus-3 with an assist Sunday, helping the Wild to a series-clinching win against the Blues in Game 6.
Analysis: The helper was a nifty one, as Marco Scandella had to fight through heavy traffic along the boards in order to drop the puck off to Justin Fontaine for the score. Scandella posted a plus-5 rating in the opening round of the playoffs, which currently has him tied with five other skaters for the league lead in the plus/minus category.

Beau Bennett
Pens' Bennett Heads Into Offseason Feeling Healthy
Beau Bennett, RW, PIT
12:15 AM
News: Beau Bennett (upper body) said Sunday that he's fully healthy heading into the offseason, Seth Rorabaugh of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
Analysis: The upper-body injury resulted in Beau Bennett being scratched for the final three games of the Penguins' first-round series with the Rangers, but it looks like he would have been a candidate to play had his team extended the series to six games. With just 10 goals and 33 points in 96 games over his three seasons with the Penguins, Bennett has yet to emerge as the top-six winger the team thought it had on hand when they selected him 20th overall in 2010. He'll be a restricted free agent this summer, but it remains to be seen if the Penguins will tender him a contract.

 
 
 
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