The first half of the 48-game regular season has been a positive one for the NHL.
Coming after the misery of the four-month lockout that threatened to cancel the entire year, the NHL has seen a number of surprising performances by teams and individuals that are worthy of headlines and attention.
For the purpose of this story, we are looking at positive developments and unexpected achievements. We are not looking at major disappointments—even though they can also be surprises. That's a different story.
Uplifting performances breathe life into franchises and players, and here are the surprises that have gotten our attention through the first half of the year.