Avalanche, Maple Leafs put streaks on the line
The Colorado Avalanche will look to set a team record by winning their 11th straight home game when they host the Toronto Maple Leafs (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, CBC, SN, SN360, CITY, ALT, NHL LIVE). The line of Gabriel Landeskog (three goals, one assist), Nathan MacKinnon (one goal, four assists) and Mikko Rantanen (one goal, two assists) combined for 12 points when the Avalanche (20-8-2) defeated the Winnipeg Jets 7-1 on Thursday for their 10th consecutive home victory. Colorado has won three in a row, is 9-1-1 in its past 11 games and leads the NHL in scoring averaging 4.30 goals per game. Toronto (22-8-2) has won four in a row and is 10-2-1 in its past 13 games. Maple Leafs center John Tavares has scored nine points (three goals, six assists) during a seven-game point streak. — Tom Gulitti, staff writer
Penguins go for 11th win in row
The Pittsburgh Penguins seek their 11th straight win when they visit the Dallas Stars on Saturday (2 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, BSSW, ATTSN-PT, NHL LIVE). The Penguins (20-8-5) have outscored opponents 45-20 during the streak, led by Sidney Crosby (16 points; three goals, 13 assists), Evan Rodrigues (14 points; seven goals, seven assists), Kris Letang (14 points; all assists) and Jake Guentzel (13 points; eight goals, five assists). The Stars (16-12-2) are coming off an impressive 6-5 shootout win against the Florida Panthers on Thursday and defeated the Penguins earlier this season, 2-1 in a shootout Oct. 19. — David Satriano, staff writer
Rangers continue to prove themselves
With the exception of a misstep against the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday in a 5-1 road loss, the New York Rangers have been doing a pretty good job of proving their worth of late. Since the holiday break, the Rangers have played well against stiff competition, narrowly losing to the Florida Panthers (4-3) before winning three straight, two against the Tampa Bay Lightning and one against the Edmonton Oilers. Still, there doesn’t seem to be quite the belief that they’re a top contender that there might otherwise be for a team that’s 22-9-4 and tied for second in the Metropolitan Division, led by stars like defenseman Adam Fox (35 points; five goals, 30 assists) and forward Chris Kreider (32 points; 21 goals, 11 assists). A win against the surprising Anaheim Ducks (18-11-7) at Honda Center (10 p.m. ET; BSSC, BSSD, MSG 2, ESPN+, NHL LIVE) to start the California portion of their West Coast road trip would continue to elevate them in the conversation for top teams in the NHL. — Amalie Benjamin, staff writer
Pittsburgh Penguins at Dallas Stars (2 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, BSSW, ATTSN-PT, NHL LIVE)
Pittsburgh, which continues a six-game road trip, has won its past five away from home. Penguins forward Bryan Rust has scored seven goals in three games. Dallas has won three straight since a five-game losing streak.
Toronto Maple Leafs at Colorado Avalanche (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, CBC, SN, SN360, CITY, ALT, NHL LIVE)
Toronto could be without forwards Mitchell Marner and Pierre Engvall, who were placed in NHL COVID-19 protocol Friday. Colorado goalie Darcy Kuemper has won his past seven starts, never allowing more than three goals in any one game in that span.
Boston Bruins at Tampa Bay Lightning (7 p.m. ET; BSSUN, NESN, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
Boston (17-11-2) is expected to get Charlie McAvoy back after the defenseman did not play in a 3-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild on Thursday because of a lower-body injury. Nikita Kucherov had two assists in his return from injury for the Lightning (23-8-5) in a 4-1 win against the Calgary Flames on Thursday.
San Jose Sharks at Philadelphia Flyers (7 p.m. ET; NBCSP, NBCSCA, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
Tomas Hertl has scored points in 10 of his past 11 games (15 points, nine goals, six assists) for the Sharks (18-16-1). Goalie Martin Jones, who played the previous six seasons with San Jose, is expected to start for Philadelphia (13-15-6), which has lost four in a row (0-3-1)
Florida Panthers at Carolina Hurricanes (7 p.m. ET; BSSO, BSFL, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
The Panthers (22-7-5) are 4-0-1 in their past five games; they have played 13 road games (4-4-5), tied for the fewest in the NHL. The Hurricanes (24-7-1) have won five straight and are first in the Metropolitan Division.
New Jersey Devils at Columbus Blue Jackets (7 p.m. ET; BSOH, MSG+, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
Jack Hughes can extend his point streak to six games for the Devils (14-16-5), who have won four of five. Hughes has scored 12 points (four goals, eight assists) in that span. The Blue Jackets (15-16-1) have lost three straight, including 3-1 at the Devils on Thursday.
Nashville Predators at Arizona Coyotes (8 p.m. ET; BSAZ+, BSSO, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
The Predators (22-11-2) have vaulted to the top of the Central Division with 10 wins in their past 12 games (10-1-1). Goalie Juuse Saros has a 2.22 goals-against average and .928 save percentage. The Coyotes (7-22-3) seek their second straight win; they have not won two in a row since Nov. 20-21.
Washington Capitals at Minnesota Wild (8 p.m. ET; BSN, NBCSWA, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
The Capitals (20-7-8) play the second half of back-to-back games after a 5-1 loss at the St. Louis Blues on Friday. They are 6-3-2 in their past 11 games. The Wild (20-10-2) will be without forward Kirill Kaprizov, who was injured in a 3-2 win at the Boston Bruins on Thursday. They have not won consecutive games since Dec. 7 and 9.
Chicago Blackhawks at Vegas Golden Knights (10 p.m. ET; TVAS, ATTSN-RM, NBCSCH, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
Marc-Andre Fleury will play at Vegas for the first time since he was traded to Chicago on July 27. The Blackhawks (11-18-5) have lost six straight (0-3-3). The Golden Knights (23-13-1) are 11-3-1 in their past 15 games.
New York Rangers at Anaheim Ducks (10 p.m. ET; BSSC, BSSD, MSG2, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
The Rangers, who lost 5-1 at the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday, will try to avoid losing back-to-back games for the second time this season. Alexandar Georgiev is expected to start again for the Rangers in the place of goalie Igor Shesterkin, who is in COVID-19 protocol. Troy Terry leads the Ducks with 34 points (21 goals, 13 assists) in 35 games and is coming off a hat trick in a 4-1 win at the Flyers on Tuesday.
Detroit Red Wings at Los Angeles Kings (10:30 p.m. ET; BSW, BSDET, ESPN+, NHL LIVE)
The Red Wings (16-15-3) defeated the Sharks 6-2 on Tuesday and seek two straight wins for the first time since Dec. 1 and 4. Detroit forward Tyler Bertuzzi has scored three goals in the past two games. Viktor Arvidsson has scored five points (two goals, three assists) in the past two games for the Kings (16-13-5), who are 2-2-0 on a seven-game homestand.
Seattle Kraken at Winnipeg Jets, postponed
Buffalo Sabres at Montreal Canadiens, postponed
New York Islanders at Edmonton Oilers, postponed
Ottawa Senators at Vancouver Canucks, postponed