<
>

Hot and Not: A pair of sizzling Sabres and tough stretches for some big names

Ryan O'Reilly has had plenty to celebrate so far during his first season in Buffalo. AP Photo/Gary Wiepert

A look at the players trending up and down over the past week in the NHL.

EASTERN CONFERENCE

Stepping up

Ryan O'Reilly, Buffalo Sabres: His overtime goal helped the Sabres to a 2-1 win against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday at First Niagara Center. The goal was his 100th of his NHL career and snapped the Kings’ six-game winning streak. Since arriving in Buffalo via trade from the Colorado Avalanche during the offseason, O’Reilly has made significant contributions. He has three goals and seven assists during his current seven-game point streak. Overall, he has 10 goals and 17 assists this season.

Justin Faulk, Carolina Hurricanes: One of the league’s top defenseman, Faulk has seven points (4 G, 3 A) in his past four games. His 12 total goals (most among defenseman) have all come on the power play and are the most in the league with the man advantage.

Rasmus Ristolainen, Buffalo Sabres: The 21-year-old defenseman notched his first career hat trick during Thursday’s 4-3 loss to the Calgary Flames. He became the first Sabres blueliner to record a hat trick since Phil Housley in 1988. During Saturday’s 2-1 overtime win against the Kings, Ristolainen logged 27:30 of ice time. He averages 24:13 per game and he’s the only NHL player with an average above 20 minutes per game who does not have a penalty this season.

A step back

Kevin Hayes, New York Rangers: The forward hasn’t registered a point in his past five games, and has tallied only one assist over the past ninee.

P.K. Subban, Montreal Canadiens: The defenseman has gone five games without a point, and has just one assist in his past eight.

Phil Kessel, Pittsburgh Penguins: Maybe the coaching change in Pittsburgh will help Kessel find some consistency. He’s gone four games without a point. Overall, he has nine goals and eight assists in 28 games.

WESTERN CONFERENCE

Stepping up

Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles Kings: Yes, We have to add him to the mix this week. Quick made 40 saves en route to a 3-2 shootout victory over the Penguins Friday night. It was the Kings’ six consecutive win, and Quick was in net for all of them.

Taylor Hall, Edmonton Oilers: The Oilers have won five consecutive games and Hall has scored in four straight. He’s provided five goals and four assists in that span and also scored the game-winning goal in three consecutive games. Overall, he has 14 goals and 30 assists in 30 games.

Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks: As long as he keeps his point streak going, Kane will remain in this category. He extended his franchise-record streak to 26 games with an assist during Sunday’s game against the Vancouver Canucks. Kane passed the Penguins’ Sidney Crosby to become the only player since 1992-93 to register a point in 26 consecutive games. Crosby produced a 25-game point streak during the 2010-2011 season. Kane also leads the league with 27 assists.

Johnny Gaudreau, Calgary Flames: His two goals and one assist helped the Flames to a 5-4 overtime victory over the Rangers on Saturday. He assisted on the game-winning goal. Gaudreau has seven goals and three assists, including three multi-point performances, in the last five games. Overall, he has 12 goals and 19 assists for 31 points in 29 games this season. The Flames are in the midst of a five-game winning streak.

A step back

Ryan Kesler, Anaheim Ducks: The forward has not registered a point in his past four games and has gone six games without a goal.

Jori Lehtera, St. Louis Blues: Has gone 10 games without a goal and has only one assist in that span. Last season, he finished with 14 goals and 30 assists in 75 games. This season he has three goals and 12 assists in 31 games.

Jarome Iginla, Colorado Avalanche: The veteran has gone seven games without a point, remaining just three goals shy of 600 for his NHL career.