This afternoon on NBC, it’s the Chicago Blackhawks hosting the Boston Bruins starting at 12:30 p.m. ET. Following are some game notes, as compiled by the NHL on NBC research team:
• Chicago is the only team in the NHL to have three players ranked in the top 10 in points (Patrick Kane, Patrick Sharp, and Jonathan Toews) and assists (Duncan Keith, Kane, and Toews).
• Meanwhile, the Bruins have seven different players that have netted at least 10 goals (Reilly Smith, Milan Lucic, Jarome Iginla, Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, David Krejci, and Torey Krug).
• Although Tuukka Rask has been among the league’s top goaltenders this season, he has a 3.71 GAA and .876 save percentage since Dec. 28.
• The Blackhawks’ offensive success in regulation hasn’t translated to the shootout. Despite leading the league in goals per game, their 24.4 shootout shooting percentage ranks 24th. They are 0-4 in the skills competition since Dec. 6.
• If history is any indication, then the Boston Bruins should be considered the favorites in this rematch against the 2013 Stanley Cup finalists. Since 2006-07, the losing team in the finals has gone 4-1-1 in their first contest against the defending champions.
• Chicago is 25-0-4 when they score first while the Bruins are 21-5-1 when they take the initial lead.
• The Blackhawks are tied for the league high in Olympic selections with 10.
• Chicago has a chance to become the first team since the Edmonton Oilers to win the Stanley Cup three times in five campaigns. Edmonton did it in 1987, 1988, and 1990.