We're well into the final week of the regular season, and now more than ever, the game are really having a playoff-like feel. The Carolina Hurricanes, Colorado Avalanche and Montreal Canadiens are each playing with urgency, trying to lock up those final playoff spots in their respective conferences. Meanwhile, the upstart Arizona Coyotes have been pushed to the brink of elimination, and the Columbus Blue Jackets did themselves no favors. Despite the uptick in defense and tight checking, we still had our share of decent fantasy performances. Let's get started!
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Tuesday's Fantasy Five
The Hurricanes went into Toronto and dropped the Maple Leafs for an important two points, as they moved back into the first wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference, one point ahead of both the Blue Jackets and Canadiens. Petr Mrazek has been a huge reason why the Hurricanes are in the position that they're in. Mrazek allowed just one goal on 24 shots to pick up the victory, as he improved to 22-14-3 with a 2.42 goals-against average and .912 save percentage. He has been even better down the stretch, going 10-2-0 with a 1.74 GAA and .941 save percentage across the past 12 outings. Dougie Hamilton came up with two goals in support, giving him six goals and eight points over the past 12 contests. Next up is a key important home game against the New Jersey Devils, a potential playoff clinching goal if they grab two points.
Jake DeBrusk and the Bruins actually helped the Canadiens and Hurricanes, as they put one on the Blue Jackets in C-Bus. The B's came away with a 6-2 victory, and DeBrusk was Public Enemy No. 1 in Ohio's capital city. He scored twice with an assist and a plus-3 rating. He has racked up three goals and 22 points with a plus-8 rating over the past 19 games. It was more than enough for Tuukka Rask, who moved to 27-12-5 with a 2.42 GAA and .915 save percentage, and he bounced back for his fantasy owners after yielding eight goals over the past two starts.
Tyson Barrie posted a goal with an assist and a plus-5 rating, as the Avalanche remain red hot. All they need is one more point in the final two games, or a loss in overtime or regulation by the Arizona Coyotes to punch their stick to the playoffs. Barrie has posted 13 goals with 58 points, setting a new career high in the latter. He posted 57 points last season to set a new best.
Dylan Larkin and his linemates have rolled up big points, and they made life difficult for the Pittsburgh Penguins, who still haven't locked up a spot outside of the wild card just yet. That's thanks to the upstart Wings. Larkin had three assists with a plus-2 rating, giving him five goals and 11 points with a plus-10 rating during his six-game point streak. Tyler Bertuzzi chipped in with two goals, an assist and a plus-2 rating, and he has five goals with eight assists and a plus-8 rating during his five-game point streak, including a pair of game-winning tallies. Anthony Mantha also stayed red-hot, lighting the lamp two more times with a plus-1 rating. That's seven goals and 14 points with a plus-9 rating over his six-game point streak, including three power-play goals and a helper on the man advantage.
Last, but certainly not least, Dallas Stars forward Alexander Radulov rolled up two goals and four points with a plus-1 rating, giving him a four-game goal-scoring streak. He really wants to go to the playoffs, and the Stars made it official by clinching a spot on Tuesday night. Radulov has five goals with 10 points during his six-game point streak, too. The Stars have overcome the loss of Ben Bishop (lower body), as Anton Khudobin is holding down the fort. He allowed just two goals on 34 shots to pick up a victory, improving to 16-16-5 with a 2.47 GAA and .926 save percentage overall.
Quick Hits: P.K. Subban posted a goal with an assist, a plus-2 rating and six shots on net. He has two goals with five points and a plus-3 rating in a three-game point streak after an eight-game scoreless skid. … Pekka Rinne allowed two goals on 28 shots to improve to 28-19-4 with a 2.44 GAA and .917 save percentage. That includes an impressive 4-1-1 record, 1.64 GAA and .951 save percentage across the past six starts. … Jeff Skinner notched his 38th goal to set a new career high, breaking a tie with his 37 goals set in 2016-17 with the Hurricanes. … Torey Krug went for two assists and a plus-3 rating with two blocked shot, and he has five apples over the past four outings. … Sergei Bobrovsky had his five-game winning streak snapped, allowing four goals on 23 shots before being pulled in the second period vs. Boston. … David Pastrnak scored his 37th goal, giving him six goals and 12 points across the past eight games since returning from his thumb injury. … Jordan Staal stayed hot, posting a goal and an assist with a plus-2 rating. He has three goals and eight points with a plus-9 rating over the past eight outings. … John Tavares keeps on chugging along, as he notched a power-play goal for Toronto's only tally. He extended his career-high marks with 47 goals and 88 points. … Eddie Pasquale made the start for the Lightning with Louis Domingue nicked up and Andrei Vasilevskiy getting a much-needed rest. The Blue Jackets and Hurricanes might not be thrilled with Tampa, as it made the night easier for Montreal in a key game. Pasquale allowed four goals, although he did make 41 saves. … On the other end of the ice, Carey Price allowed just two goals on 24 shots for a victory, moving to 35-23-6 with a 2.50 GAA and .917 save percentage. He is 6-1-1 with a 2.00 GAA and .933 save percentage across the past eight contests. … Devan Dubnyk allowed a goal on 33 shots to pick up the win, although Minnesota has been eliminated from the playoff picture. … Ryan Nugent-Hopkins posted two assists in the road loss in Colorado. He now has28 goals and 67 points, both career bests, and he has rolled up eight goals and 25 power-play points, which are easily his highs. … Gabriel Landeskog posted a couple of helpers, giving him a goal and five points with a plus-2 rating across the past three outings since his return from injury. … Tanner Pearson scored two goals with a plus-2 rating, seven SOG and two hits. He has five goals and six points with a plus-3 rating over the past seven outings. … Thatcher Demko allowed just two goals on 35 shots to pick up a win, keeping the ice-cold San Jose Sharks down. He is the goalie of the future in Vancouver, and a great long-term keeper pick. … Kyle Clifford of the Kings is finishing up strong, as he has double-digit goals for the first time in his career. He also did what he does best, rack up penalty minutes. He finished with 17 PIM. … Jack Campbell made a career-high 49 saves, picking up the win while posting a 2.23 GAA and .930 save percentage across 24 starts and 30 appearances. … Lastly, Darcy Kuemper suffered what the team is calling an upper-body injury, as he took a stick in the face mask.