Top scorers square off in Colorado-Chicago matchup
Chicago Blackhawks (14-16-6, seventh in the Central Division) vs. Colorado Avalanche (22-10-3, second in the Central Division)
Denver; Saturday, 9 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: A pair of the league’s best scorers, Nathan MacKinnon and Patrick Kane, meet when Colorado and Chicago square off. MacKinnon is third in the NHL with 53 points and Kane ranks eighth in the league with 44 points.
The Avalanche are 12-8-1 in conference play. Colorado is second in the NHL averaging 6.0 assists per game, led by MacKinnon with 0.9.
The Blackhawks are 9-10-5 against conference opponents. Chicago has scored 18 power-play goals, converting on 16.8% of chances.
In their last meeting on Dec. 18, Colorado won 4-1.
TOP PERFORMERS: MacKinnon leads the Avalanche with 21 goals and has collected 53 points. Mikko Rantanen has recorded 12 points over the last 10 games for Colorado.
Kane leads the Blackhawks with 19 goals and has 44 points. Jonathan Toews has recorded 10 points over the last 10 games for Chicago.
LAST 10 GAMES: Blackhawks: 4-5-1, averaging 2.4 goals, 3.9 assists, 3.5 penalties and 8.7 penalty minutes while giving up 3.2 goals per game with a .911 save percentage.
Avalanche: 7-2-1, averaging 3.4 goals, 5.7 assists, 3.1 penalties and 6.9 penalty minutes while giving up 2.1 goals per game with a .938 save percentage.
INJURIES: Avalanche: Erik Johnson: out (upper body), Philipp Grubauer: day to day (undisclosed), Andre Burakovsky: out (upper body).
Blackhawks: Brandon Saad: day to day (ankle), Brent Seabrook: day to day (undisclosed).