News: Kennedy (lower body) was able to take part in Saturday's morning skate, but won't be a lineup option for the Sharks' tilt with the Blackhawks, David Pollak of the San Jose Mercury News reports.
Impact: Kennedy is reportedly dealing with muscle spasms in the lower-body injury, the fourth unique ailment he's had to deal with this season. The winger declined to put an estimate on a potential return date, but if he continues to practice without much pain over the next couple of days, he could be ready to go for Monday's match against Edmonton.
News: Niemi will be between the pipes for Saturday's tilt with the Blackhawks, Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area reports.
Impact: Niemi has faced a bear of a schedule lately. After drawing a loss to a surprisingly competitive Flames squad two Saturdays ago, he was able to outlast the Kings and Ducks his last two times out. He'll have difficulty sustaining that winning streak against the Blackhawks and their impressive attack, which has generated at least three goals in four of its last five games. It might be worthwhile for Niemi's owners to explore other goalie options for Saturday's slate.
News: Couture had an assist and three shots in Thursday's win over the Ducks.
Impact: January has been good to Couture. Over the last 10 games he's posted four goals and eight assists. His point-per-game rate is the best of his career with 18 goals and 25 assists through 49 games.
News: Irwin scored the game-winner in Thursday's game against Anaheim.
Impact: That's Irwin's third goal of the season and second point in as many games. He's only put in 24 games this season, but he's scoring points at a similar rate to last season, when he put up two goals and 17 assists through 62 games. If he can get in the lineup a little more regularly, he has some value in deep leagues.
News: Tennyson had an assist and played a season-high 20:45 in Thursday's win over the Ducks.
Impact: Tennyson is seeing more consistent ice time over the last month, though his minutes and production are still very limited. The 20:45 of ice time he logged on Thursday is nice, but it's only the second time all season he's crossed 20 minutes; he tends to hover a little closer to 17 minutes a night.
News: Nieto had an assist, a plus-2 rating and one shot through 10:27 of ice time in Thursday's win over Anaheim.
Impact: Nieto is coming out of his slump nicely, having posted a goal and two assists in his last five games. He's not working his way toward the Hart Trophy, but it's a significant improvement over the nine-game pointless streak he had going before that.
News: Hertl picked up two assists Thursday for his third multi-point game of the season.
Impact: After a dazzling start to his rookie campaign last season, Hertl has not become the steady contributor San Jose had hoped for. He has 19 points this season and only one goal in his last 17 games.