6 NHL Players Who Need to Improve Before the Playoffs

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6 NHL Players Who Need to Improve Before the Playoffs
Claus Andersen/Getty Images

While it might be too late to up his 2012-13 goals-against average and save percentage to a savory number, St. Louis Blues goaltender Brian Elliott is flaunting all-important hints of peaking at the right time.

After a 3-6-1 start followed by a month-long hiatus from game action, Elliott has started his homestretch on a three-game winning streak.

He turned away 19 of 20 Minnesota Wild shots and then 33 of 36 in 65 minutes en route to a shootout win over the regal Chicago Blackhawks. Most recently, he blanked the host Detroit Red Wings, 1-0, with a 28-save effort Sunday afternoon to help St. Louis leapfrog them in the standings.

Even if Elliott cannot fully repair his swollen GAA or sub-.900 save percentage, what matters is that he bolsters a run to the postseason and has the Blues poised to build on the foundation they sculpted in 2012.

Assuming he keeps up his timely, torrid pace, let the reigning co-recipient of the William Jennings Trophy be a model to other leaned-on NHL players who have lagged for the better part of 2013.

Here are some other NHLers who have been out of character since the belated season began or have had too many bouts of inconsistency but can render all of that moot by excelling in the climax of the campaign.

Unless otherwise indicated, all statistics for this report were found via nhl.com

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