It was a pretty good week for Chris M., who saw his team launch themselves into top spot in the standings, after a 28-point week, passing Grant and taking a 3-point lead into the Christmas-shortened Week Thirteen. This is the second week that Chris has had at least a share of the lead, being in a tie for the lead after Week Ten.
Overall, the top four, in terms of names, remained the same, as only the top two switched spots for the week.
Scoring Bounced Back
After another down week in Week Eleven (11.2 points per NHL game), the pool saw a nice bounce back week, as it collected 11.6 points per NHL, almost beating Week Eleven's total points (570), just coming up 14 points short. That's promising, given all the injuries that have occurred in the last few weeks.
It was a monster week for the Colorado Avalanche's Matt Duchene, who finished the week with 9 points, earning the top honour outright for Week Twelve. Duchene was keeping Cindy in the running for the Mover & Shaker all week, as he climbed up the scoring ranks.
In four games in Week Twelve, Duchene finished with 2 goals and 7 assists for his 9 points, finishing the week in 30th place in pool scoring with 16 goals and 17 assists in 32 games. Duchene isn't tops on Cindy's team, but he is up there now, as he is one of three players on her team that have already eclipsed the 30-point mark this year.
Sorry, there's no picture this week... it's another diet week.
It was a great week for scoring, as I had outlined above and it kept the race alive and well for the Mover & Shaker. Winning the race, just by a single points, was Mike S., who has taken his second Mover & Shaker award of the season, thanks to 36 points in Week Twelve, moving up to 15th place.
Unfortunately for Mike, his team hasn't been terribly consistent this season, especially since his two Mover & Shaker awards haven't given him a spot in the top half of the pool to this point.
Looking at Mike's team, it was one hell of a team effort, as all but one active player finished with points in the week. Chris Stewart of the St. Louis Blues led the team, picking up 7 points, followed by Wayne Simmonds with 4 points and then four others had 3 points each.
15th place isn't quite the peak position for Mike's team this year, as he finished Weeks One and Two in 9th place, but those are tough positions to keep. Unfortunately, he dropped down to 22nd in Week Six, but he jumped four places in the last week to 15th, so maybe things are finally looking up for him.
It was another tie for the Basement Dweller in Week Twelve, as a couple of teams finished with 13 points, so we'll have to go to the tie-breaker... goals scored!
Our contestants, Dale B. and Wyllie, finished with 13 points... AND 5 goals each. So, that's no good. Then we move to wins and thanks to one Kari Lehtonen win in the week, Dale B. gets eliminated from Basement Dweller consideration and our resident for Week Twelve is Wyllie.
Seven of Wyllie's players in Week Twelve finished with no points, three were out with injury and the other four had no excuse. Wyllie dropped from 16th to 19th in the week, as his team is now disappointing him from such a good start, by Wyllie standards.
NEWS AND NOTES
The Anaheim Ducks had a couple of scratches on Saturday night, as Teemu Selanne was on the back end of a back-to-back nights, so he sat out like he has all season long. Dustin Penner also joined him in the press box, as a healthy scratch, which doesn't really surprise, as his season has been rather inconsistent as well. Both players are expected back in the line-up on Monday night.
The Calgary Flames were in Pittsburgh for an afternoon matinee game against the Penguins and it appeared to be costly. Leaving the game and not returning were both forward Curtis Glencross and defenseman Kris Russell, each suffering lower-body injuries. The Flames host the Blues on Monday night and it sounds unlikely that either player will go, which hurts the team going forward.
This one has been a bit of a miss over the last week or so, as defenseman Ryan Murphy has been a healthy scratch for the Carolina Hurricanes for most of the week and it was only caught on the weekend that he belongs to Allan in the pool. The rookie defenseman has been hanging in the Hurricanes' line-up for the most part this season, but with the Canes struggling to stay afloat, some more veteran presence may be required .
The word out of Dallas is Stars defenseman Sergei Gonchar is suffering from some concussion-like symptoms and his availability going forward is now questionable, at best. It sounds like the Stars are going to be following the NHL protocol for the concussion symptoms, so it will be at least a week before Gonchar will be eligible to return, but there is no certainty that he'll need only a week to get better. Gonchar is now listed as out indefinitely, likely going to be put on the IR to open up a spot this week as well.
The Ottawa Senators are not winning, which means the healthy scratch carousel continues to turn. On Saturday afternoon, the Senators scratched forward Mika Zibanejad and defenseman Joe Corvo, as Cory Conacher and Patrick Weircioch returned to the line-up against the Coyotes. It didn't help. The Sens still dropped the game at home, 4-3, and I would have to think that some new names may hit the list before too long.
Finally, the Vancouver Canucks received another injury scare at the Christmas Break, as goaltender Roberto Luongo left Sunday night's game against the Winnipeg Jets with a lower-body injury, late in the 1st period, not to return. The Canucks do have a 6-day break for the holidays, which should be ample time to get some healing in and more than enough time for the team to not announce anything official before a game. Stay tuned to this one!
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