Ovechkin takes the goal-scoring lead, Carter leads the Kings, lineup news, Fantasy tips and more in Scott Cullen’s Statistically Speaking. Chad Pinder Jersey . HEROES Alex Ovechkin – Scored a pair of goals in Washington’s 4-0 win over Pittsburgh. With 13 goals in the past 13 games, Ovechkin now has 29 goals on the season to lead the league. He’s a little behind last season’s 51-goal pace, but this surge has put Ovechkin back at the top of the goal-scoring race. While Ovechkin’s shots on goal totals are down, a little, he has seen a massive jump in power play shot attempts. His 13 power-play goals leads the league and 16 even-strength goals is tied for seventh. OVECHKIN SHOOTING YEAR G/GP SOG/GP SH% 5-on5 SA/60 5-on4 SA/60 2007-08 0.79 5.44 14.6% 26.5 31.7 2008-09 0.71 6.68 10.6% 30.3 44.4 2009-10 0.69 5.11 13.6% 27.8 38.4 2010-11 0.41 4.65 8.7% 23.2 35.5 2011-12 0.49 3.88 12.5% 21.3 32.1 2012-13 0.67 4.58 14.5% 21.8 40.7 2013-14 0.65 4.95 13.2% 24.1 39.1 2014-15 0.60 4.79 12.6% 22.6 51.1 Ovechkin’s playmaking centre, Nicklas Backstrom assisted on both of Ovechkin’s goals. Since 2008-2009, Backstrom’s second season, the Capitals rank third and fourth in points per game, behind Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. Jeff Carter – The Kings centre was a force in a 4-3 win over Chicago, scoring two goals and assisting on another. Even with two goals, Carter has 0.29 goals per game (14 in 48 games) this season, his lowest goal-scoring rate since 2006-2007, his second season in the league. Braden Holtby – Washington’s goaltender delivered a 27-save shutout in a 4-0 win against Pittsburgh. His .922 save percentage ranks sixth in the league, yet not good enough to be one of nine goaltenders named to the All-Star game, apparently. ZEROES Saad, Toews, Hossa – They weren’t terrible, but all Chicago’s first line of Brandon Saad, Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa were under 46% possession and were on for two goals against in a 4-3 loss at Los Angeles. For most lines, that’s not particularly notable. For one of the best two-way lines in hockey, it stands out that they got the worst of it, particularly when facing the line of Jeff Carter, Dwight King and Tyler Toffoli. Adam Henrique – The New Jersey forward failed to generate a shot attempt in 19:57 of ice time and was crushed in shot attempts (3 for, 13 against, 18.8%) at even strength in a 2-1 shootout win over Toronto. Nick Shore – The Kings rookie forward didn’t play much, 6:11 total, against Chicago, but was on for two Blackhawks goals against and not great possession stats (3 shot attempts for, 6 against, 33.3%) despite starting two-thirds of his shifts in the offensive zone; a small-sample tough night. LINEUP NEED TO KNOW Sidney Crosby – Returned to the Pittsburgh lineup after missing his mandated one game after the All-Star break. He played 19:42, struggling in the faceoff circle (7 wins, 17 losses, 29.2%) in a 4-0 loss to Washington. Tyler Toffoli – The Kings winger returned to the lineup, for his first game since January 8, after a bout of mono, and scored a goal and an assist in a 4-3 win against Chicago. Adam Larsson – New Jersey’s lone regulation goal-scorer in the win over Toronto, the 22-year-old defenceman is seeing much different usage under the new regime. In January, Larsson has six points (1 G, 5 A) in nine games, while averaging 23:37 of ice time per game. He had been averaging 16:35 per game in 21 games through the end of December. Andre Burakovsky – The Capitals rookie winger had four points (2 G, 2 A) during a three-game point streak, playing on the top line with Alexander Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, yet was a healthy scratch for Wednesday’s game against Pittsburgh. Jake Gardiner – The Maple Leafs defenceman logged 26:49 at New Jersey, his second straight game over 25 minutes and most in a single game since February 23, 2012. The absence of Dion Phaneuf is going to open up lots of playing time on the Toronto blueline. Petter Granberg – Speaking of Toronto defencemen getting a chance while Phaneuf is out, the 2010 fourth-round pick played his first game of the season (second of his career) for the Maple Leafs at New Jersey. Granberg had seven points (1 G, 6 A) and was even in 28 AHL games before getting called up. SHORT SHIFTS Capitals D Mike Green had a goal and an assist in the 4-0 win over Pittsburgh; he has 17 points (2 G, 15 A) in his past 18 games…Blackhawks RW Patrick Kane recorded a goal and an assist in a 4-3 loss at Los Angeles, giving him 27 points (11 G, 16 A) in his past 20 games…Blackhawks LW Patrick Sharp also had a goal and an assist, and has five points (1 G, 4 A) in the past four games…Kings C Anze Kopitar had a pair of assists in the win; he has 13 points (3 G, 10 A) in the past nine games…Devils RW Martin Havlat had a strong possession game (13 shot attempts for, 2 against, 86.7%) against Toronto...Devils G Cory Schneider stopped 29 of 30 shots in a 2-1 shootout win vs. Toronto, while Maple Leafs G Jonathan Bernier had 22 saves on 23 shots. FANTASY FOCUS There are 11 games on the schedule tonight, so here are half a dozen players to consider for your lineup: Mikhail Grabovski – 15 points (7 G, 8 A) in 39 games is not a great output, despite his stellar possession stats, but getting a shot to play with John Tavares and Josh Bailey on the Isles’ top line is a good opportunity. Michael Del Zotto – Injuries have given him a better opportunity and Del Zotto has five points (2 G, 3 A) during a four-game point streak and has played more than 20 minutes in eight straight games. Riley Sheahan – While he does have five points, all assists, in the past five games, the Red Wings centre has scored one goal in the past 18 games and has just 21 shots on goal in that time. Nevertheless, he’s a two-way centre with some offensive upside. Brad Boyes – The veteran winger has five points (3 G, 2 A) in the past seven games and has a good opportunity, skating with promising young linemates Aleksander Barkov and Jonathan Huberdeau. Seth Jones – Taking advantage of more minutes in Ryan Ellis’ absence, Jones has five points (1 G, 4 A) in the past five games and has played more than 20 minutes in each of the past seven games. Mikael Backlund – He has never had a 40-point season in the NHL and probably won’t get there this year, either, due to injuries, but the Flames centre has eight points (5 G, 3 A) in his past eight games. Much of the data included comes from www.war-on-ice.com, www.puckalytics.com, www.hockeystats.ca and www.naturalstattrick.com Scott Cullen can be reached at email@example.com Dennis Eckersley Jersey . Terrance Broadway threw for 227 yards and Hunter Stover kicked three field goals as the Ragin Cajuns won an unprecedented fourth straight New Orleans Bowl with a 16-3 triumph over Nevada. Glenn Hubbard Jersey . He had spent 16 days on the disabled list before being activated Thursday. He was batting just .203 when he came to bat in the 11th inning on Sunday. http://www.athleticsrookiestore.com/Athletics-Jake-Smolinski-Kids-Jersey/ . "I had a pretty good year," the soft-spoken Granberg told TSN.ca with a grin from the teams annual rookie tournament in London. A fourth-round selection in 2010, Granberg is worth keeping an eye on with NHL training camps rolling around in less than a week. The six-foot-two, 200-pound defender may not possess the wow-inspiring theatrics of fellow prospect Morgan Rielly, but nonetheless has a chance to contribute with the Leafs when all is said and done this season.(SportsNetwork.com) - Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan is nearing a return to the slumping Atlantic Division leaders, who will resume a six-game homestand Wednesday versus the Philadelphia 76ers. The Raptors are 12-9 without DeRozan because of a sever groin injury and he could return Wednesday or maybe Friday versus the Atlanta Hawks. DeRozan averaged 19.4 points per game before the injury for Toronto, which is posting an average of 108.0 ppg over the past 21 contests. Anything he brings to the table will help us through this tough time, Raptors coach Dwane Casey said. We are not playing good basketball right now on either side of the ball, offensively or defensively. Toronto has lost five of its last six games and dropped to 1-2 on the homestand following Mondays 114-111 setback to the Detroit Pistons. The Pistons scored 66 points in the second half and 22 off 19 turnovers. When you commit that many turnovers against a good team like that, you shoot yourself in the foot and thats what we did tonight, Casey said. Caseys club is averaging 16.8 turnovers in the past five games, but is giving up only 12.2 this season. The Raptors made 54 percent of their shots and couldnt stop Pistons guard Brandon Jennings, who had 34 points on 11-of-22 shooting. Jonas Valanciunas led the Raptors with 31 points and 12 rebounds, while Greivis Vasquez and Lou Williams netted 16 and 15 points, resspectively, off the bench. Brett Anderson Jersey. Toronto is 15-5 at Air Canada Centre and will also host the Atlanta Hawks and New Orleans Pelicans on the stay. Philadelphia had won two in a row and three of four games, and suffered a 105-87 loss to the sizzling Hawks Tuesday night. Michael Carter-Williams scored 20 points and grabbed nine rebounds for the Sixers. Atlanta had 34 assists to Philadelphias 20 and posted a 47-35 advantage in rebounds. The Hawks made 12-of-23 3-pointers in their ninth straight win. They pass the ball, they play together, Sixers coach Brett Brown said of the Hawks. K.J. McDaniels scored 14 points and Jerami Grant added 13 in the loss. The 76ers are 5-14 on the road and will host the Pelicans Friday. Guard Tony Wroten left Tuesdays game with a knee injury and is questionable against the Raptors. Wroten leads the Sixers with 16.9 ppg. Toronto defeated Philadelphia, 120-88, on Nov. 9 north of the border and was led by DeRozans 24 points. The two Atlantic foes will meet again Jan. 23 and March 2. The Raptors have won five in a row against the Sixers and four straight as the host. The Raptors have scored 100 or more points in six straight matchups with Philadelphia. DeRozan is scoring 27.0 ppg in the past five meetings, while Kyle Lowry is averaging 14.5 ppg in 15 career games against Philly. Lowry is posting 21.8 points and 8.7 assists in DeRozans absence. 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