ValeriNichushkin


Five players to target for Week 21.


Here are some teams to target and avoid for the next week or two, several players to target that may be available in your league as well as teams that play a light schedule in the upcoming week.

 

Boston Bruins = Target

 

Games: 7 (3H/4A)

Favorable Matchups:

    - vs. Washington

        > 9th worst defensive team

        > 4th most shots allowed per game

        > 24 goals allowed in past eight games (3.00 GAA)

    - vs. Florida

        > 4th worst defensive team

        > Worst penalty kill

        > 34 goals allowed in past eight games (4.25 GAA)

    - vs. Washington

        > See above

    - @ Florida

        > See above

 

The Bruins will look to expand on their Atlantic division lead with a good string of games peppered with some defensively susceptible squads.  Their next six games include two games each against the defensively-challenged Washington Capitals and one of the Atlantic division doormats: the Florida Panthers.  Prior to the Olympic break, the Milan Lucic, Jarome Iginla and David Krejci line was the trio putting up points for the Bs.  It seems like the scoring goes in waves between this line and the Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and Reilly Smith line.  Look for these six to all succeed during the coming weeks.

 

Calgary Flames = Consider

 

Games: 7 (4H/3A)

Favorable Matchups:

    - @ Edmonton

        > Worst defensive team

        > 5th most shots allowed per game

        > I’m still not sold on Ben Scrivens as a #1 goalie

    - vs. Ottawa

        > 3rd worst defensive team

        > 2nd most shots allowed per game

        > 27 goals allowed in past six games (4.50 GAA)

    - vs. NY Islanders

        > 2nd worst defensive team

        > 3rd worst penalty kill

        > 13 goals allowed in past three games (4.33 GAA)

 

Over their past eight games, the Flames have put up under three goals only twice, three goals once, four goals four times and five goals once on their way to a 3.13 goals per game average.  While Calgary is no threat to make the playoffs, they did win six of their previous eight games (oddly enough, their two losses were the two games they scored less than three goals).  Mikael Backlund had been carrying the team going into the break.  Guys like Lee Stempniak, Jiri Hudler and Mike Cammalleri should snap out of their respective funks with this upcoming schedule.

 

Carolina Hurricanes = Beware

 

Games: 6 (2H/4A)

Unfavorable Matchups:

    - @ Los Angeles

        > Top defensive team

        > 3rd fewest shots allowed per game

    - @ Anaheim

        > 6th best defensive team

        > 8th fewest shots allowed per game

    - @ San Jose

        > 5th best defensive team

        > 7th best penalty kill

        > 5th fewest shots allowed per game

    - vs. NY Rangers

        > 9th best defensive team

        > 10th best penalty kill

    - @ New Jersey

        > 4th best defensive team

        > Best penalty kill

        > Fewest shots allowed per game

    - vs. NY Rangers

        > See above

 

The Hurricanes have one of the worst schedules I have seen for offensive production (our projected lack thereof).  They play the #1, #4, #5, #6 and #9 (twice) defensive clubs in the NHL in a matter of two weeks, four of those games on the road.  No one on the Canes has been very good, fantasy-wise, over the past month.  Jeff Skinner has come to a screeching halt from his white hot run of what seemed like two goals every night.  Eric Staal has yet to start his typical second half surge.  Alex Semin has done what I thought he would do once he signed a long-term contract, kind of fade away while he collects a fat paycheck.  Jordan Staal, well he’s making Ray Shero look like a genius for not signing him.  Don’t start your Carolina players unless you have no other choice.

 

Minnesota Wild = Avoid

 

Games: 5 (3H/2A)

Unfavorable Matchups:

    - @ Vancouver

        > 4th best penalty kill

        > 10th fewest shots allowed per game

        > Roberto Luongo has a 2.14 GAA and .922 SV% on home ice this season

    - vs. St. Louis

        > 3rd best defensive team

        > 3rd best penalty kill

        > 2nd fewest shots allowed per game

 

The Wild are not a high-scoring team as is, but couple that with only five games in a span of two weeks, including games in Vancouver and against St. Louis and the list of Minnesota players you’re starting on a busy night is dwindling.  Zach Parise is the #1 fantasy asset on this team (among skaters).  Mikael Granlund is proving to be a sneaky play and Mikko Koivu is rumored to be returning soon.  Outside of those three, Ryan Suter and possibly Jason Pominville, there isn’t much talent to rely on at the moment.  Steer clear for now.

 

 

Possible Pickups

Here’s a list of some players, owned in less than 30% of Yahoo leagues, to target for the upcoming Monday to Sunday schedule.

 

Boston: Carl Soderberg (4%) – Eight points in his past eight, including +2, six hits and 28 faceoff wins.  No room for him or Loui Eriksson in the top six, so they are part of a pretty damn good third line.

 

Calgary: Mikael Backlund (11%) – Ten points in his past seven games, consisting of five games with two points in each.  Six of those ten points were goals.  Backlund looks to be on the top line and top powerplay.  So any Calgary goals scored and odds are he was involved.

 

Dallas: Valeri Nichushkin (11%) – He has a goal in each of his last two games.  The only ding on Nichushkin (other than being an inconsistent rookie) is his lack of powerplay time.  His even strength linemates don’t get much better with Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin.

 

Columbus: Boone Jenner (2%) – Five points in his past six games to go with +5, nine PIMs and 13 hits.  His regular linemates are Ryan Johansen (leads team in points) and Nathan Horton.

 

Buffalo: Drew Stafford (5%) – 11 points in his last nine games, six of which were goals.  Couple that with his 30 shots and it makes me forget all the times he’s burned me by doing jack squat whenever I would draft him.  He’s a solid add for now until he slows down or I pick him up in one of my leagues.

 

 

Light Day Targets

Want to know what teams to target based on their schedule landing on light days for the upcoming Monday to Sunday schedule?

 

Week: Monday, March 3rd through Sunday, March 9th

 

Monday: 8 teams

Tuesday: 20 teams

Wednesday: 8 teams

Thursday: 20 teams

Friday: 10 teams

Saturday: 20 teams

Sunday: 10 teams

 

We’re back to a full week of action and the NHL looks like they’ve evened the schedule out nicely.  Eight games each on Monday and Wednesday, ten each on Friday and Sunday and then 20 games on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

 

So what teams have a good schedule for the light days?

 

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thur

Fri

Sat

Sun

Calgary Flames

X

 

X

 

X

X

 

Buffalo Sabres

X

 

 

X

X

 

X

Montreal Canadiens

X

 

X

X

 

X

 

New York Rangers

 

 

X

 

X

 

X

Detroit Red Wings

 

X

 

X

X

 

X

 

 

Friday, February 28 to Thursday, March 6

Best Bets

Boston (4.32) - 4 Games: WSH, @NYR, FLA, WSH

Columbus (4.25) - 4 Games: FLA, @TOR, DAL, @CHI

NY Islanders (4.24) - 4 Games: NJ, FLA, @WPG, @EDM

Dallas (4.21) - 4 Games: TB, BUF, @CBJ, VAN

Vancouver (4.15) - 4 Games: MIN, OTW, @PHX, @DAL

Steer Clear

Detroit (1.91) - 2 Games: @NJ, COL

Minnesota (2.11) - 2 Games: @VAN, CGY

Carolina (2.47) - 3 Games: @LA, @ANH, @SJ

Pittsburgh (2.76) - 3 Games: @CHI, @NSH, @SJ

Buffalo (2.79) - 3 Games: SJ, @DAL, @TB

Saturday, March 1 to Friday, March 7

Best Bets

NY Islanders (5.29) - 5 Games: NJ, FLA, @WPG, @EDM, @CGY

Calgary (4.46) - 4 Games: @EDM, @MIN, OTW, NYI

Boston (4.32) - 4 Games: WSH, @NYR, FLA, WSH

Columbus (4.25) - 4 Games: FLA, @TOR, DAL, @CHI

Dallas (4.21) - 4 Games: TB, BUF, @CBJ, VAN

Steer Clear

Minnesota (1.16) - 1 Games: CGY

Toronto (2.81) - 3 Games: @MTL, CBJ, @NYR

Detroit (2.85) - 3 Games: @NJ, COL, NJ

San Jose (2.85) - 3 Games: @NJ, CAR, PIT

Nashville (2.89) - 3 Games: WPG, PIT, STL

Sunday, March 2 to Saturday, March 8

Best Bets

NY Islanders (4.34) - 4 Games: FLA, @WPG, @EDM, @CGY

Vancouver (4.31) - 4 Games: OTW, @PHX, @DAL, CGY

Calgary (4.27) - 4 Games: @MIN, OTW, NYI, @VAN

Boston (4.16) - 4 Games: @NYR, FLA, WSH, @TB

Dallas (4.15) - 4 Games: BUF, @CBJ, VAN, MIN

Steer Clear

Los Angeles (1.90) - 2 Games: MTL, @WPG

Chicago (2.10) - 2 Games: COL, CBJ

Minnesota (2.11) - 2 Games: CGY, @DAL

Edmonton (2.42) - 2 Games: OTW, NYI

Pittsburgh (2.71) - 3 Games: @NSH, @SJ, @ANH

Monday, March 3 to Sunday, March 9

Best Bets

Boston (4.35) - 4 Games: FLA, WSH, @TB, @FLA

Calgary (4.27) - 4 Games: @MIN, OTW, NYI, @VAN

Dallas (4.15) - 4 Games: BUF, @CBJ, VAN, MIN

Columbus (4.04) - 4 Games: @TOR, DAL, @CHI, @NSH

Buffalo (4.04) - 4 Games: @DAL, @TB, @FLA, CHI

Steer Clear

Anaheim (1.89) - 2 Games: MTL, PIT

Philadelphia (2.15) - 2 Games: WSH, @TOR

Carolina (2.66) - 3 Games: @SJ, NYR, @NJ

Pittsburgh (2.71) - 3 Games: @NSH, @SJ, @ANH

Colorado (2.79) - 3 Games: @CHI, @DET, STL

Tuesday, March 4 to Monday, March 10

Best Bets

Boston (4.35) - 4 Games: FLA, WSH, @TB, @FLA

Vancouver (4.31) - 4 Games: @PHX, @DAL, CGY, NYI

Ottawa (4.24) - 4 Games: @EDM, @CGY, @WPG, NSH

Winnipeg (4.21) - 4 Games: NYI, LA, OTW, @COL

Calgary (4.21) - 4 Games: OTW, NYI, @VAN, LA

Steer Clear

Minnesota (1.84) - 2 Games: @DAL, STL

Philadelphia (2.15) - 2 Games: WSH, @TOR

Carolina (2.66) - 3 Games: @SJ, NYR, @NJ

Montreal (2.71) - 3 Games: @ANH, @PHX, @SJ

Florida (2.86) - 3 Games: @BOS, BUF, BOS

Wednesday, March 5 to Tuesday, March 11

Best Bets

Washington (4.66) - 5 Games: @PHI, @BOS, PHX, PIT, @PIT

Calgary (4.21) - 4 Games: OTW, NYI, @VAN, LA

Buffalo (4.20) - 4 Games: @TB, @FLA, CHI, NSH

NY Rangers (4.11) - 4 Games: TOR, @CAR, DET, @CAR

Nashville (4.08) - 4 Games: STL, CBJ, @OTW, @BUF

Steer Clear

Chicago (2.10) - 2 Games: CBJ, @BUF

Montreal (2.71) - 3 Games: @ANH, @PHX, @SJ

Carolina (2.85) - 3 Games: NYR, @NJ, NYR

Colorado (2.89) - 3 Games: @DET, STL, WPG

Edmonton (2.95) - 3 Games: NYI, LA, @MIN

Thursday, March 6 to Wednesday, March 12

Best Bets

Vancouver (4.26) - 4 Games: @DAL, CGY, NYI, @WPG

Buffalo (4.20) - 4 Games: @TB, @FLA, CHI, NSH

Nashville (4.08) - 4 Games: STL, CBJ, @OTW, @BUF

Winnipeg (4.05) - 4 Games: LA, OTW, @COL, VAN

Boston (4.00) - 4 Games: WSH, @TB, @FLA, @MTL

Steer Clear

Philadelphia (1.99) - 2 Games: @TOR, NJ

Ottawa (2.05) - 2 Games: @WPG, NSH

Montreal (2.70) - 3 Games: @PHX, @SJ, BOS

Toronto (2.76) - 3 Games: PHI, @ANH, @SJ

Carolina (2.85) - 3 Games: NYR, @NJ, NYR

 

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