Artem Anisimov won an eye-popping 15 out of 21 faceoffs in the Blackhawks' season-opening victory over Pittsburgh on Thursday.
That's a 71.4 percent success rate for a player who has won just 46 percent of his draws over an eight-year career. It's a small sample size for sure, but just how did this happen?
"In the past, so many guys cheat and (now) the guys are getting away from this cheating," Anisimov said. "Now they're more strict with the rules."
So Anisimov was just too squeaky clean before?
"Like I tried to cheat, but I'm not good (at) that," he said, then added with a huge smile: "I tried to cheat and the referee's like, 'See ya!' "
The NHL is cracking down on faceoff rules this season, mostly making sure players weren't going over the lines or throwing their bodies forward before the puck was dropped.
As for Anisimov, he said he put in a lot of time over the summer working on speed, quickness and timing.
Movin on up?
Joel Quenneville said moving Nick Schmaltz to the top power-play unit was "immediately discussed" after the season opener. It hasn't happened yet, but don't be surprised if the Hawks make this move so that Schmaltz and Patrick Kane can take advantage of their growing chemistry together on the ice.
Tanner Kero missed Saturday's game against Columbus, but said he expects to be ready for Monday's game at Toronto. Tommy Wingels centered the fourth line in place of Kero. … Alex DeBrincat recorded his first NHL point when the league on Friday awarded him an assist on Patrick Sharp's first-period goal in the Hawks' 10-1 win over Pittsburgh.