Whilst everyone is staring at the future stars at the Junior World Championship in Vancouver, the SHL season has been rumbling on with only a small break for the Channel One Cup at the beginning for the month.
The league has divided into two groups - the top 11 teams, separated by just 13 points and the bottom three separated by three points. It is so tight this year that goal difference may be the deciding factor between playoff or relegation come March.
Over the next few days before the next round starts we can take a look at the top six teams and one or two in the bottom half of the table.
1. Frölunda Indians
The team from Gothenburg have had a poor start to the month losing to 12th and 13th placed Mora IK and Örebro HK letting in 10 goals in the process to cause their netminders to slip in the overall save percentages. However, they have bounced back winning both matches in a double header with bottom of the table Timrå IK and winning 5-2 away from home at Skellefteå AIK.
If the beginning of the year belonged to the undrafted American Ryan Lasch, December has been a month when Anaheim Ducks drafted, Max Friberg has impressed last leading the team with nine points (3G+6A) in eight games.
Lasch and captain Joel Lundqvist still lead the team in total points, but the American has missed a handful of matches following a injury during the CHL quarterfinal match and has slipped from top spot to eighth in Total Points. However, the team continues to show the form and strength in depth , with players like Friberg, which still makes them my favourite to win both the CHL and SHL.