Around the NHL: Blues streaking, Evander Kane and more


Is there a hotter team in the NHL right now than St. Louis? The Blues have won seven straight games and 12 of their last 13 to pull even with the Nashville Predators for first place in the Central Division. Their 72 points is good for a second place tie, two points behind Anaheim, for the most in the entire NHL.

The combination of Brian Elliot and Jake Allen have been outstanding between the pipes during the current stretch. Elliot picked a 30 save, 2-1 overtime victory Tuesday night against Eastern Conference leading Tampa Bay. Allen followed that up with a 23 save shutout of the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday. 

The shutout was the third of the season for Allen and fourth of his career. Allen is 4-0-0 since the calendar changed to 2015. 

The Blues have managed to keep winning despite losing All Star defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. The 26 year old injured an abdominal muscle while attempted to make a hit on Alexander Ovechkin last weekend. The team has stated he will need 7-10 days rest before having surgery after which time he will be on a week to week recovery basis. 

Anyway you slice it, if St. Louis continues to play the way they are, they might not only be the gateway to the west but the gateway to the finals.

Kings go to DC

For the second time in three seasons, the Los Angeles Kings made a trip to the White House to meet with President Barack Obama. Obama, who is from Chicago, took the opportunity to make a few jokes about the ability for a city like Los Angeles to make ice.  The Kings defeated the Blackhawks in last year's conference finals. 

The president also took a moment to recognize and thank captain Dustin Brown and goalie Jonathan Quick for representing the United States at last year's Olympics in Sochi. 

Evander Kane

Winnipeg Jets forward Evander Kane was placed on injured reserve on Thursday. It ended an interesting week for Kane. It all started on Tuesday when Kane showed up to a team meeting in a track suit, violating team dress code regulations. 

It was reported that after the meeting Kane went to either see the trainer or work out at which time assistant captain Dustin Byfuglien took the track suit and put it in tub full of cold water. When asked, Byfuglien told reporters "I'm sure you have rules in your household and if the kids don't stick to it, you have to discipline them. It is what it is."

Kane then left the arena and made himself unavailable to his teammates and coaches until just about 30 minutes prior to game time. At that time, he informed the team he would not be playing. 

Kane was then placed on IR Thursday. Coach Paul Maurice is expected to make a formal announcement today regarding a possible surgery. 

League Leaders through 2/5/15

Goals – Ovechkin, Nash (32)

Assists – Voracek (41)

Points – Voracek (58)

Plus/Minus – Kucherov (+29)

Wins – Rinne, Andersen (29)

Bill Minchin is a contributing writer for Flyerdelphia. Follow Bill on Twitter @wtfd103074