BradRichards


Looking ahead to the best fantasy options for Week Five.


* This article was written prior to NHL games played on Thursday, October 24, 2013

 

Here are a couple teams to target and avoid for the next week or two as well as several players to target that may be available in your league.

 

New York Rangers = Target

 

Games: 7 (5H/2A)

Favorable Matchups:

  • @ Detroit – Bookending their shootout shutout loss to San Jose, Detroit has allowed five and six goals to Phoenix and Ottawa, respectively.  Seems like feast or famine with them right now since Jimmy Howard returned from his injured hand.
  • @ NY Islanders – Nine goals against in their last two games and Evgeni Nabokov has looked shaky in both starts posting .826 and .848 save percentages.  Last week I touted the Isles as a solid defensive team, guess I was kidding.
  • vs. Buffalo – Like Steve mentioned in the ramblings on Thursday, Buffalo is fantasy hockey medicine for your struggling players going up against them.  15 goals against in their last four games.

 


The Rangers are one of three teams to play seven games over the next two weeks.  They also return home from their season-opening road trip and play five of their next seven games at MSG.  Five of the teams they face average more than two and half goals against per game.  Still no Ryan Callahan or Rick Nash for the foreseeable future, so look for Brad Richards and Derek Stepan to lead the way offensively for the Blue Shirts.

 

Chicago Blackhawks = Consider

 

Games: 6 (4H/2A)

Favorable Matchups:

  • @ Winnipeg – 13 goals against in the last four games.  Ondrej Pavelec is sporting a 3.09 GAA and .901 SV%.
  • vs. Calgary – Bottom four team in goals against average and dead last in PK% (69.0%).
  • vs. Winnipeg – See above.

 

Odds are most of the Blackhawks top six are owned in your pool and they should be started with regularity, but this is a little reassurance.  No one on the team is scoring at a point per game pace, but with one small scoring streak, that could change.  Take a shot with your Hawks as you normally would.

 

New Jersey Devils = Beware

 

Games: 4 (2H/2A)

Unfavorable Matchups:

  • @ Boston – Second best defensive team averaging a goal and half against per game.  Fourth best PK in the league.  Boston is good, New Jersey is not.
  • @ Minnesota – Surprisingly, in the top four defensively despite a rather non-stellar 74.4% PK success rate.  Josh Harding has performed admirably in Niklas Backstrom’s absence.

 

Aside from back-to-back games on November 2nd and 3rd, New Jersey has at least two off days between each of their next five games.  Four games in 13 days, coupled with being 26th in the league in goals scored per game and a 13.3% powerplay means it may be time to bench those Devils.

 

Nashville Predators = Avoid

 

Games: 4 (1H/3A)

Unfavorable Matchups:

  • vs. St. Louis – Ken Hitchcock
  • @ Phoenix – Dave Tippett
  • @ Los Angeles – Darryl Sutter
  • @ Colorado – Patrick Roy

 

Just look at that schedule.  Only four games, three of which are on the road, all against notoriously defensive teams plus a game against the surprisingly stingy Avalanche (best defensive team and best PK in the NHL).  Pekka Rinne is out for at least the next month, so fantasy owners are hurting there.  Now owners of Predator forwards are going to be feeling the pain.

 

 

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.

 

NY Rangers: Taylor Pyatt (0%) – No Rangers are really lighting it up lately since they’ve played one game in the past week and were shutout by the Devils.  If Pyatt sticks on the Brad Richards and Derick Brassard line, then he has the best odds at chipping in points.

 

Chicago: Andrew Shaw (6%) – Getting top unit powerplay time with Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Patrick Sharp.  Good enough for me.

 

Montreal: Brian Gionta (4%) – Tomas Plekanec has been turning it on lately and Gionta is lining up with him even strength and the powerplay.  Gionta has two points in the past three games along with 12 shots on goal.

 

Pittsburgh: Chuck Kobasew (1%) – Taking James Neal’s spot along with Evgeni Malkin and Jussi Jokinen for the time being.

 

Dallas: Rich Peverley (2%) – Two points in the last two games playing with Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin at even strength and second line PP time.

 

 

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 2: Monday, October 28 through Sunday, November 3

 

Thursday: 6 teams

Sunday: 6 teams

Wednesday: 8 teams

Monday: 10 teams

Tuesday: 16 teams

Friday: 16 teams

Saturday: 26 teams

 

As usual, Saturday is jam packed with all but four teams having a game scheduled.  Tuesday is somewhat heavy with just over half the league being in action.  The rare thing here is the unusually light (three games) Thursday and heavy (eight games) Friday.

 

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

 

Dallas Stars: Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Sunday

New York Rangers: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday

Chicago Blackhawks: Monday, Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday

Pittsburgh Penguins: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday

Calgary Flames: Wednesday, Friday and Sunday


 

Friday, October 25 to Thursday, October 31

Best Bets

Toronto (4.28) - 4 Games: @CBJ, PIT, @EDM, @CGY

Buffalo (4.24) - 4 Games: @FLA, @TB, DAL, @NYR

NY Rangers (4.15) - 4 Games: @DET, MTL, @NYI, BUF

Pittsburgh (3.94) - 4 Games: NYI, @TOR, @CAR, BOS

Anaheim (3.80) - 4 Games: @OTW, @CBJ, @PHI, @BOS

Steer Clear

Minnesota (1.80) - 2 Games: @CHI, CHI

New Jersey (1.91) - 2 Games: @BOS, TB

Nashville (1.95) - 2 Games: STL, @PHX

Carolina (1.95) - 2 Games: @COL, PIT

Detroit (2.05) - 2 Games: NYR, @VAN

Saturday, October 26 to Friday, November 1

Best Bets

Tampa Bay (4.24) - 4 Games: BUF, @FLA, @NJ, @CAR

NY Rangers (4.15) - 4 Games: @DET, MTL, @NYI, BUF

Dallas (4.15) - 4 Games: WPG, @BUF, @MTL, COL

Montreal (4.10) - 4 Games: SJ, @NYR, DAL, @MIN

Pittsburgh (3.94) - 4 Games: @TOR, @CAR, BOS, CBJ

Steer Clear

New Jersey (1.91) - 2 Games: @BOS, TB

Nashville (1.95) - 2 Games: STL, @PHX

Columbus (2.05) - 2 Games: ANH, @PIT

Florida (2.10) - 2 Games: TB, STL

Carolina (2.15) - 2 Games: PIT, TB

Sunday, October 27 to Saturday, November 2

Best Bets

NY Rangers (4.31) - 4 Games: MTL, @NYI, BUF, CAR

Los Angeles (4.21) - 4 Games: EDM, @PHX, SJ, NSH

Tampa Bay (4.09) - 4 Games: @FLA, @NJ, @CAR, STL

Montreal (4.01) - 4 Games: @NYR, DAL, @MIN, @COL

Pittsburgh (3.99) - 4 Games: @CAR, BOS, CBJ, @CBJ

Steer Clear

Nashville (1.85) - 2 Games: @PHX, @LA

Minnesota (2.00) - 2 Games: CHI, MTL

Calgary (2.10) - 2 Games: TOR, DET

New Jersey (2.26) - 2 Games: TB, PHI

Winnipeg (2.75) - 3 Games: @COL, @STL, CHI

Monday, October 28 to Sunday, November 3

Best Bets

NY Rangers (4.31) - 4 Games: MTL, @NYI, BUF, CAR

Chicago (4.31) - 4 Games: @MIN, OTW, @WPG, CGY

Montreal (4.01) - 4 Games: @NYR, DAL, @MIN, @COL

Pittsburgh (3.99) - 4 Games: @CAR, BOS, CBJ, @CBJ

Dallas (3.94) - 4 Games: @BUF, @MTL, COL, @OTW

Steer Clear

Winnipeg (1.85) - 2 Games: @STL, CHI

Nashville (1.85) - 2 Games: @PHX, @LA

San Jose (1.95) - 2 Games: @LA, PHX

Columbus (2.00) - 2 Games: @PIT, PIT

Florida (2.04) - 2 Games: STL, @WSH

Tuesday, October 29 to Monday, November 4

Best Bets

NY Rangers (4.36) - 4 Games: @NYI, BUF, CAR, ANH

Detroit (4.23) - 4 Games: @VAN, @CGY, @EDM, @WPG

Anaheim (3.90) - 4 Games: @PHI, @BOS, @BUF, @NYR

Chicago (3.36) - 3 Games: OTW, @WPG, CGY

Philadelphia (3.26) - 3 Games: ANH, WSH, @NJ

Steer Clear

Nashville (1.85) - 2 Games: @PHX, @LA

San Jose (1.95) - 2 Games: @LA, PHX

Columbus (2.00) - 2 Games: @PIT, PIT

Florida (2.04) - 2 Games: STL, @WSH

Colorado (2.10) - 2 Games: @DAL, MTL

Wednesday, October 30 to Tuesday, November 5

Best Bets

Detroit (4.23) - 4 Games: @VAN, @CGY, @EDM, @WPG

Boston (4.21) - 4 Games: @PIT, ANH, @NYI, DAL

Calgary (3.91) - 4 Games: TOR, DET, @CHI, @MIN

Minnesota (3.41) - 3 Games: MTL, NJ, CGY

NY Rangers (3.36) - 3 Games: BUF, CAR, ANH

Steer Clear

Nashville (1.85) - 2 Games: @PHX, @LA

Tampa Bay (2.00) - 2 Games: @CAR, STL

Winnipeg (2.00) - 2 Games: CHI, DET

Los Angeles (2.05) - 2 Games: SJ, NSH

Toronto (2.09) - 2 Games: @CGY, @VAN

Thursday, October 31 to Wednesday, November 6

Best Bets

NY Rangers (4.41) - 4 Games: BUF, CAR, ANH, PIT

Phoenix (4.00) - 4 Games: NSH, @SJ, VAN, @ANH

Anaheim (3.90) - 4 Games: @BOS, @BUF, @NYR, PHX

Chicago (3.46) - 3 Games: @WPG, CGY, WPG

Minnesota (3.41) - 3 Games: MTL, NJ, CGY

Steer Clear

Toronto (0.95) - 1 Games: @VAN

Los Angeles (1.05) - 1 Games: NSH

Tampa Bay (2.00) - 2 Games: @CAR, STL

Vancouver (2.00) - 2 Games: TOR, @PHX

New Jersey (2.11) - 2 Games: PHI, @MIN


 


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austeane said:

austeane
Awesome! One one hand, this is awesome for one-week leagues, on the other it comes out each week a few hours too late to be of use in Yahoo leagues from friday-friday.
It would be awesome if this could be posted before midnight!

Thanks!
October 25, 2013
Votes: -1
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