Hemsky

 

Last week, we covered how fantasy defensemen could potentially play a big role in fantasy leagues and how they are widely undervalued in many fantasy pools. This week we’ll take a gander at wingers to see who is primed for success and who’s due for a fall. Yes, I mentioned last week that defensemen could make or break a team, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you can completely ignore the wingers though. You just need to recognize that the disparity between quality defensemen and waiver wire defensemen is much more noticeable than the disparity between quality wingers and waiver wire wingers. 

 

 

 

When looking for trends I took into account three major factors 1) total ice-time given 2) power-play ice-time given and 3) shots on goal per game. Generally speaking the higher the numbers the more opportunity there is for success. Face it if you don’t play you don’t score, and if you shoot a ton, there is a higher chance of picking up points.

 

But first... 

 

Maasquito Buzzings…

-    Sammy Pahlsson is leading the Western Conference in faceoff wins with 196.
-    Joe Thornton, Joe Pavelski, Marian Hossa, and Devin Setoguchi each picked up six points last week.
-    Devin Setoguchi and Joe Pavelski was ranked number three and five overall in Yahoo for last week, both players had six points plus one ratings, four power-play points and 17 and 16 shots on goal respectively. Setoguchi is only 76% owned in Yahoo leagues, and Pavelski is only 39% owned, both numbers will climb after this week.
-    Dustin Brown regains the lead in the Western Conference with 61 hits.
-    Kyle Wellwood is shooting at an astounding 35.0%, but he only has registered 20 shots on goal, which explains his elevated stats. Once he takes more shots that %age will go down. Fabian Brunnstrom dropped down to 28.6%, his healthy scratches probably aren’t helping him. Andrew Brunette rose up to 28.6% and could be worth picking up because the Wild just don’t have very many options.
-    Teemu Selanne maybe the king of power-play goals, but he’ll need to watch out for the Detroit duo of Franzen and Zetterberg or Sharks duo of Thornton and Pavelski as all four players tallied two power-play goals last week.
-    Setoguchi now claims the Western Conference crown for SOG with 76, followed by Brown (74), Perry, Phaneuf and Marleau all at 71. SOG usually translates into points, so if you are looking for the latest trends look for high SOG totals.  
-    Sean Avery regained his PIMs crown as he’s sitting pretty as the top-dog with 66.
-    Minnesota continues to be near perfect on the PK as they still are operating at 93.3%
-    Detroit is blazing with a 32.4 power-play percentage, which means almost one in three opportunities they are scoring. WOW! St. Louis still remains up there with a 24.0% rating, it’ll be interesting to see how Andy McDonald’s injury will affect the power-play though and third belongs to Minnesota with a 23.9% rating, I guess they don’t need Gabby after all.
-    Vancouver now claims the top spot in the Western Conference in five-on-five scoring ratio with a rating of 1.39. Calgary is tied with Colorado for the worst in the NHL with a rating of 0.76. What this stat might represent is the +/- for your players.
-    Minnesota leads the league with an average of 11.0 minutes in penalties per contest. So don’t look for any big goons from the Minny line-up. Calgary is averaging the league high of 20.3, but Chicago is catching up with 20.0.

 

Around the West
Now let’s look at a team by team analysis starting with the Central Division, starting in the windy city.

 

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Patrick Kane

20:03

4:35

50

Patrick Sharp

19:41

4:10

52

Martin Havlat

18:05

3:19

41

Kris Versteeg

17:44

2:44

29

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Andrew Ladd

12:39

0:58

31

 

Kane is a must own in all formats of fantasy hockey, his 21 points in 16 contests pretty much shows that’s he’s ready for point-per-game production in just his sophomore year. Sharp is building on his 62 point performance from last season and given his current time on ice should be near the point-per-game mark at the end of the season. Havlat remains to be an injury risk, and it’s just a matter of time when that happens. If you own him you might want to see if you can use that to your advantage and see if you can get a more dependable point-per-game winger in exchange for him. Versteeg has been a huge fantasy surprise this season with 15 points in 16 games, and certainly will be a favourite for the Calder trophy at the end of the season if he keeps up this pace. You can pass on Andrew Ladd though, as Versteeg has pretty much stolen all of the wind out of Ladd’s sails.       

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Jakub Voracek

12:25

3:05

26

Kristian Huselius

19:23

4:10

46

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Rick Nash

21:19

3:50

62

Jason Chimera

17:32

2:34

48

Fredrik Modin

16:35

2:27

30

 

Columbus revamped their offense with the additions of Voracek and Huselius in the off-season to provide some additional help for sniper Rick Nash. Voracek is averaging just 12:25 minutes of ice-time per contest, and is fifth in scoring for the Jackets. If he can work his way up towards the 17 or 18 minute mark he could be in for a big season. With righties being so shallow this season, Voracek is a perfect candidate to stash away for later on in the season. Chimera is one of the fastest skaters in the NHL, but his 14 points in 18 games are just an aberration and is due for a stat adjustment fairly soon. His career-high has only been 36 points, so his 64 point pace is just too good to keep up, deal him if you own him. Rick Nash is averaging 3.44 shots per contest, and if he keeps up his current shooting pace should end up with 37 goals. He is a stud and owners should just be patient with him, he’ll hit the point-per-game mark by the end of the season.

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Marian Hossa

18:19

3:12

62

Johan Franzen

17:43

2:22

41

Mikael Samuelsson

15:13

2:12

49

Daniel Cleary

16:00

1:13

36

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Henrik Zetterberg

20:17

2:56

62

Tomas Holmstrom

15:12

3:12

26

Jiri Hudler

12:32

2:15

27

 

No big surprises in Detroit, the big guns of Hossa and Zetterberg lead the way for the wingers in Detroit. Hossa has 23 points in 26 games while Zetterberg has 15 in 14, both players are shooting a ton for the Red Wings and will continue to do so for the duration of the season. Both should tally around 90-100 points at the end of the season. Franzen should be a solid option at RW and will get plenty of attention in Detroit. Samuelsson’s pace is too good to be true, 15 points in 16 games for a player that averaged 40 points in the past three seasons is unreasonable. Cleary has struggled this season, while given plenty of ice-time, so pass on him as well.

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Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

J.P. Dumont

18:24

4:27

43

Martin Erat

18:18

4:42

27

Patrick Hornqvist

13:31

1:38

34

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Vernon Fiddler

14:36

0:23

25

Ryan Jones

12:14

2:22

20

       

 

The Predators are largely dominated by Dumont and Erat on the wing. The Predators offense isn’t as strong as many of the other teams in the NHL, so they generate a lot of their offense from their blue line which explains why there is a lack of production upfront from the Predators’ offense. Only fantasy-worthy players are Dumont and Erat. Both are getting plenty of ice-time on even strength and power-play. Erat only has 27 shots on goal so far this season, so you’d want him to shoot more to garner more opportunities for points. Other than those two, pass on the rest of the Preds.

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Brad Boyes

20:09

4:44

36

Lee Stempniak

19:46

4:30

32

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Keith Tkachuk

18:07

4:28

41

Paul Kariya

18:06

4:14

31

David Perron

14:21

2:00

19

 

The Blues utilize five forwards on the power-play which is why you see four wingers average more than four minutes on the power-play. Tkachuk has been on fire on the power-play as he has tallied seven power-play goals, while Boyes has picked up two. The quintet of wingers has picked up 33 points on the power-play this season. The only blemish is that Boyes, Tkachuk and Stempniak are a combined minus 26 so far this season, which will hurt your fantasy team if you have two or three of them on your fantasy squad. Boyes tallied 43 goals last season, and is on pace for 44 this season, so definitely expect him to keep it up in your lineup, he’s a genuine sniper. Tkachuk is right around where he should be at a 65 point pace, so don’t expect any more than that. Perron will take a big dip as his 65 point pace will be too much for him to keep up due to the lack of quality playing time in St. Louis. Stempniak probably will finish the season with 70-75 points, 20-25 or so from the power-play, so he’s not a bad option for the shallow RW position. The big news that happened in St. Louis is the broken ankle to McDonald. It’ll be interesting to see if the Blues red-hot power-play will stagnate now that McDonald is out. They played Tkachuk in center last season, so they might go back to the well once again this season. With T.J. Oshie out, Patrik Berglund looks like the only viable option up the middle for the Blues.   

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Jarome Iginla

21:41

5:29

59

Todd Bertuzzi

20:06

5:25

37

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Rene Bourque

15:17

1:06

43

Mike Cammalleri

15:51

4:00

43

Curtis Glencross

13:00

0:42

23

 

The Flames are solely dependent on Iggy and Bertuzzi on the power-play, which is why you see both players averages nearly five and a half minutes on the power-play each contest. Cammalleri was acquired from the Kings in the off-season to generate some offense on the second line for the Flames, but has averaged less than 16 minutes per contest, he does however have 15 points in 17 contests though, which I guess makes up for it. The main question remains, will Bertuzzi keep it up? The short answer is NO! He’s currently firing at an 18.9% rate right now, which is nearly 5% higher than his career average. However, if you look at the stats back in his heyday with Markus Naslund, he shot 17.7% and 18.9% when he registered 36 and 46 goals respectively. The main question is do you really trust a 33 year old to repeat what he did as a 26-27 year old? Sell high on him right now! Glencross has been stellar this season but not enough to warrant a roster spot on your fantasy squad though. The player you’d want to keep an eye on is Bourque. He’s fired as many shots on goal as Cammy, but hasn’t had the same type of production because he doesn’t garner as much power-play time as Cammy. If he maintains his career average of 9% shooting percentage, he should be around the 18 goal mark at the end of the season and with a few lucky bounces could end up with 25, which isn’t too shabby.

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Milan Hejduk

20:56

5:37

48

Darcy Tucker

15:25

1:44

26

Marek Svatos

12:16

2:08

26

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Ryan Smyth

20:53

5:43

49

Wojtek Wolski

16:36

1:45

27

    

In Avalanche territory, it’s mostly dominated by Hejduk and Smyth, who are both averaging over 20 minutes of ice-time, along with over five and a half power-play minutes and around three shots on goal per game. Smyth is only 62% owned in Yahoo leagues, which is surprisingly low, considering the amount of playing time he receives. Pick him up if he’s sitting on the waiver wire. Svatos is currently only firing at 7.7%, his career average is 14.9% so expect a boost in goals and points as the season progresses. Along the same lines, Wolski is only firing at an abysmal 3.7%, and he’s a career 12% shooter, so expect a big rush of goals to arrive for Wolski fairly soon. Tucker is probably right on his correct pace, but there are probably better options to own than Tucker at the moment so take a pass on him.     

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Ales Hemsky

18:22

4:19

46

Dustin Penner

15:21

1:29

18

M.A. Pouliot

10:49

0:20

21

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Eric Cole

15:53

3:17

39

Ethan Moreau

15:41

0:15

39

Robert Nilsson

14:29

2:18

22

 

The Oilers are a very funny team, there really isn’t an established top-line and everyone seems to contribute in one form or another with no one really standing out. Hemsky has 17 points in 17 games, and is probably the only must own from the Oilers’ squad. Cole and Penner have both been busts this season, as they only have nine points between them. The Oilers are in a bit of an offense rut, as they are ranked 27th in terms of goals for in the NHL, Cole and Penner probably won’t surpass the 60 point mark this season. Moreau has been a bright spot this season, with 10 points in 17 games, but his 46 point pace is unrealistic, as his career-high has only been 32 points. Nilsson and Pouliot won’t garner enough offense to warrant a roster spot, so pass on the both of them.

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Antti Miettinen

19:57

3:50

39

Owen Nolan

16:09

2:15

14

Marian Gaborik

20:59

2:43

6

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Andrew Brunette

17:37

3:57

21

Benoit Pouliot

11:31

2:15

14

   

You can pretty much skip this section, because it is Minny’s offense after all… just kidding or am I? Gaborik has been out since the third game of the season with a “groin injury”. The Minny offense hasn’t really missed him as they have been pretty solid with a 9-3-1 record without him. The Wild are probably waiting for him to get better so they can at least deal him off to another team and pick up pieces they can use now, rather than wait for him to return from the injury. He hasn’t started skating yet, so this looks more like a longer term lingering injury than a short one. Miettinen has been a bright spot for the Wild this season with 12 points in 15 games, but is showing signs of slowing down as most of the scoring came from the start of the season where he tallied nine points in the first seven games. If you still own him, you might want to see if you can slip him to an unsuspecting owner who only looks at overall numbers. Brunette nearly tallied 60 points last season with the Avs, but won’t be anywhere near that mark in the offensive wasteland of Minnesota. Pouliot and Nolan won’t have enough fantasy impact to affect fantasy leagues, so pass on them.      

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Steve Bernier

14:52

3:05

25

Pavol Demitra

16:30

4:10

12

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Daniel Sedin

19:25

3:50

52

Alex Burrows

15:52

2:34

34

Mason Raymond

15:51

2:27

46

 

Vancouver doesn’t have an abundance of bright stars, but it does look better this year than in previous years. Sedin continues to be a must own in fantasy leagues and has the stats to prove it. Demitra has six points in seven games, after missing some time with a rib injury. He should be on pace to finish the season with 65 points. Alex Burrow’s 54 point pace will be too much for him to maintain. His career-high has only been 31 points which was tallied last season. That seems like more of a realistic goal for Burrows than 54 points and his 11.8 shooting percentage is just too much of a deviation for him to sustain. Raymond is right on pace to score 45 points, which is a reasonable year-end target for him.

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Corey Perry

17:47

3:05

71

Teemu Selanne

16:48

4:10

61

Bobby Ryan

16:44

0:59

2

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Chris Kunitz

16:34

3:50

37

Travis Moen

15:19

2:34

27

 

The Ducks offense is pretty much solely dependent on the top-line of Ryan Getzlaf, Perry and Kunitz. Selanne helps complement the trio on the power-play but quartet is pretty much the entire Ducks’ offense. All four players are a must own in fantasy leagues. Perry and Selanne should flirt with 90 points this season, while Kunitz would be happy if he hits 75. The dark horse for the Ducks this season might be Bobby Ryan. Francois Beauchemin was lost for the season after sustaining a torn ACL, and the Ducks immediately long-term IRed him to free up the necessary cap space to recall Ryan from the minors. He will eventually join Brendan Morrison and Selanne on the Ducks second unit and bring some necessary balance to the Ducks offense. Ryan picked up 19 points in 14 contests for the Ducks’ AHL affiliate, the Iowa Chops, so he definitely has been chomping at the bit to get some game time with the big club. I’ll steal a page from the NHL marketing department, and say “Is this the year, that Ryan proves he’s worthy of being selected behind Sidney Crosby?” If there is one person that you need to pick up after reading this article Ryan is definitely it!

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Brian Crombeen

8:14

0:03

12

Mark Parrish

14:25

3:18

8

Jere Lehtinen

18:54

3:08

5

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Brendan Morrow

21:36

5:09

49

Loui Eriksson

18:54

2:49

37

Sean Avery

14:03

1:51

27

Fabian Brunnstrom

11:30

2:38

21

 

There’s a lot of depth on the Stars wings, so predicting the correct line combinations and matching the trends is a hard task to do. Morrow will be guaranteed top-line time and will certainly produce at that pace. Everyone else is a toss up. Lehtinen has been injured for most of this season, so his role is unknown until he returns. He picked up 37 points in an injury plagued season last year, so predicting 60 probably wouldn’t be a bad estimate. Parrish debuted with a hat-trick but has only scored one goal since, he was once a 30 goal scorer, but is buried behind too much depth to tally that many goals this season. Eriksson may take the biggest hit in ice-time once Lehtinen returns, so you might want to see if you can deal him while he still possesses some fantasy value. Avery is doing what he does best and could be in for a 40 point 200 PIM season and 140 SOG season. He’s only 56% owned in Yahoo leagues, and is a great addition for roto-leagues. Brunnstrom is continuing to get the shaft in Big D. He’s getting only 11 and a half minutes a game, I bet he wishes he signed with one of the other ten teams that were coveting his services at the end of last season. The Stars dealt Philippe Boucher two days ago, could they move Brunnstrom?   

 

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Dustin Brown

20:21

4:49

74

Alex Frolov

18:16

3:37

31

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Patrick O’Sullivan

17:19

2:41

40

Oscar Moller

14:14

3:29

33

Kyle Calder

14:09

2:34

16

 

The Kings lack the veteran presence, but do have some solid young kids to help provide the scoring up front. Brown is an integral focal point of their offense. He’s leading the team in SOG and is tied with Jarret Stoll for the lead in goals scored. They moved Mike Cammalleri in the off-season, because they thought Brown could fill the top-line role, he will do so admirably once he gets some luck shooting the puck. He’s only firing at 8.1% right now, and if he fired at the 15.1% that he did last season, he would have 11 and we wouldn’t even be questioning his worth right now. Definitely target Brown as a buy-low candidate in your trade talks. Frolov has had a decent season so far with 11 points in 17 games, look for him to continue that pace for the duration of the season. Many owners are waiting for O’Sullivan to bust out, me included. Dobber said it best in his ramblings, as Michal Handzus, Alex Frolov and Oscar Moller are accumulating more time on the power-play than Sully, which really is a waste of his talent. Maybe this is payback for him holding out at the beginning of the season. Either way, they’ll figure it out sooner or later, and Sully should rejoin Brown and Kopitar on the top power-play unit as the season progresses. He’s another big buy-low candidate, see if you can pry him away from a frustrated owner.    

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Shane Doan

20:38

4:26

53

Mikkel Boedker

17:43

4:01

30

Viktor Tikhonov

11:27

0:17

25

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Peter Mueller

16:53

4:01

32

Daniel Carcillo

12:49

1:44

24

 

The Coyotes are an interesting team, because they have a strong mix of veterans with Doan and Olli Jokinen, and they have the youngsters of Kyle Turris, Martin Hanzal, Boedker, Tikhonov and Mueller. Doan is pretty much a must own in all formats of fantasy hockey. He’s leading the Coyotes with 17 points while tallying 27 PIMs and 53 SOG. Mueller is off to a bit of a slow start, as many owners expected a better than 57 point pace that he currently is on playing alongside Jokinen and Doan. The main difference between this season and last season is that, he’s averaging only two shots on goal per game this season compared to nearly 2.5 last season. Once Mueller boosts his SOG average he’ll begin to start racking up the points. Definitely target Mueller as a buy-low candidate as he is bound to break out anytime now. Boedker was my initial favourite to win the Calder at the end of the season, but with hot starts to Derick Brassard, Voracek and Versteeg that might not be possible anymore. He’s probably not worth owning in one-year leagues, but definitely should be owned in keeper leagues. In the 2008-09 Dobber fantasy guide, I correctly predicted that Carcillo would take a hit in the PIMs production, there were just too many factors that negatively affected him to keep up last season’s pace. Carcillo hasn’t picked up a single point this season and only has 37 PIMs to show for it. If you don’t desperately need the PIMs you might want to bite the lemon and drop him. Tikhonov doesn’t get enough ice-time to warrant a roster spot on your fantasy squad.   

  

Name

TOI per contest

PP TOI per contest

Total SOG

Right Wingers

 

 

 

Devin Setoguchi

16:06

3:05

76

Jonathan Cheechoo

17:22

4:10

40

Left Wingers

 

 

 

Ryan Clowe

16:04

3:50

57

Milan Michalek

18:02

2:34

42

 

Finally we can finish off with a bang in San Jose. Many owners will face a big dilemma if they own Setoguchi or Clowe, the main question is can they keep this up for the duration of the season? I personally don’t have an answer for you, but I can give you justifications as to why they can or can’t keep it up. Setoguchi is only on an 86 point pace, which isn’t exactly as mind blowing as Evgeni Malkin’s 145 or Alex Semin’s 139. If I strapped on some skates and played with Marleau and Thornton, I probably could pick up 80 points, so 86 is definitely reasonable. He’s tied for third in the NHL for total shots on goal with 76 and only four shots behind league leader Jeff Carter, and two behind sniper Alex Ovechkin. He’s on pace for 328 SOG, and if he maintains his 13.2 shooting percentage, he will be in line for a 44 goal this season which is very similar to Cheechoo’s 56 goal season (317 SOG, 17.7 S%).

 

On the flip side, Setoguchi has never been an outstanding offensive player as his highest point total in junior hockey was only 83 points in the 2005-06 season, Troy Brouwer lead the league with 102 points that season. So expecting him to maintain a point-per-game pace in his sophomore season might be unwarranted. The second argument that I would make is that he faces some stiff competition from Clowe, Pavelski and even Cheechoo for that top-line gig. Those three players could easily fill the top-line role and relegate Setoguchi to third line duties if Devin hits a cold streak. I presented both sides of the fence for you, now I’ll leave the decision up to you to decide. Cheechoo had one big season, mentioned above, but has never regained that form and has left owners wondering what’s going on for two consecutive seasons. I don’t think he’ll ever return to that form as is seems more of a fluke than reality to me, sure he’s a 35 goal scorer, but not a 50 goal scorer. He’s still averaging solid even strength and power play ice-time, so he’s definitely worth owning, but owners should definitely curb their expectations for Cheechoo. Michalek and Clowe are also solid fantasy options, but Clowe probably deserves a bit more attention because he has more potential to be higher on the depth charts.            

 

Stay tuned next week as we finish off this series with centermen.

 

 


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