MatsZuccarello


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.

 

Chicago Blackhawks = Target

 

Games: 8 (4H/4A)

Favorable Matchups:

  • @ Dallas – Ninth worst defensive team in the league.  12 goals against in the last three games.  Kari Lehtonen has only had two games out of his last seven games played where he finished with a save percentage above .900.
  • @ Phoenix – Seventh worst defensive team in the league.  Fourth worst penalty kill.  20 goals against in the past six games.  Normally a stingy defensive team that can’t score.  They’re scoring some goals this year, and giving up more at the other end.
  • vs. Dallas – See above.
  • vs. Florida – Fifth worst defensive team in the league.  Third worst penalty kill.  13 goals against in the last four games.  Florida is just awful.
  • @ Dallas – See above.

 


The Blackhawks play eight games in 13 days, which I think is the maximum number of games that can be played in a 13 day span.  So they have that going for them.  Oh, and they’re the top offensive team in the league too.  As if you need to be told this anymore, but play your Hawks.

 

New York Rangers = Consider

 

Games: 7 (5H/2A)

Favorable Matchups:

  • vs. Winnipeg – 15 goals allowed in the last five games.
  • @ Buffalo – Sixth worst defensive team in the league.  Allow the second most shots against per game.
  • vs. Washington – Slipped back into the bottom ten of the NHL, defensively.  14 goals against in the past four games.

 

The Rangers are one of the lowest scoring teams in the league at this point in the season.  They were missing Rick Nash since early October.  His last game was his first plus game since his return and only his second goal.  He’s starting to round back into form and this stretch of games will help with that.  Also, Brad Richards and Ryan Callahan will look to rebound from their past three weeks of poor performance.

 

Boston Bruins = Beware

 

Games: 6 (3H/3A)

Unfavorable Matchups:

  • vs. NY Rangers – Tenth best defensive team in the league.  Fourth best penalty kill.  12 goals allowed in the past seven games.  Henrik Lundqvist has been much better lately with only three games of sub-.900 save percentage since returning from injury in late October.
  • @ Montreal – Tied with Boston as the top defensive team in the league.  Haven’t allowed more than two goals in a game since November 7th.  Since that game, Carey Price has not had a save percentage lower than .923 in a game.
  • vs. Pittsburgh – Ninth best defensive team in the league.  Eighth best penalty kill.  Allow the third fewest shots against per game.

 

The Bruins haven’t exactly struggled to score goals this year, but this next stretch of games is tougher than it looks.  It starts with the Rangers coming to town for the NHL Thanksgiving Showdown where you know the game will be tough and hard-fought, being a nationally televised main league event.  Follow that up with a couple games against Montreal and the surprisingly defensive Penguins, and the Bruins could struggle to post high fantasy point totals.

 

Buffalo Sabres = Avoid

 

Games: 5 (3H/2A)

Unfavorable Matchups:

  • @ New Jersey – Eighth best defensive team in the league.  Second best penalty kill.  Fewest shots allowed per game in the league.  Cory Schneider has been unreal this year; I don’t know why he doesn’t get more starts.  1.87 GAA and .925 SV% on the season.
  • vs. NY Rangers – See above.
  • @ Montreal – See above.

 

The Sabres are the worst offensive team in the league, by a pretty large margin, so this should come as no surprise.  They have just five games in 13 days including trips to New Jersey and Montreal and the Rangers coming to town.  I wouldn’t expect the Sabres’ 1.62 goals per game to improve during this span.

 

 

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: Mats Zuccarello (9%) – Four points in his last three games including seven shots.  The Chris Kreider, Derek Stepan and Zuccarello line has been New York’s best line.

 

Chicago: Andrew Shaw (18%) – Four points in his last three games along with +4, 2 PIMs and eight shots.  Shaw often gets the coveted job of standing in front of the net on the deadly Chicago power play.  His even strength minutes and linemates may not be the greatest, but being on the ice with Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, Patrick Sharp and company with the man advantage can easily make up for it.

 

Florida: Scottie Upshall (3%) – Eight points in his last eight games, including +3, 9 PIMs and 21 shots.  It seems like whoever lines up with Aleksander Barkov and Brad Boyes puts up the points for Florida.

 

Minnesota: Nino Niederreiter (13%) – Four points in his last seven games, +1 and 18 shots.  Outside of the Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Charlie Coyle line, Niederreiter’s line with Jason Pominville and Mikael Granlund has been the most productive for Minnesota.

 

Montreal: David Desharnais (7%) – Five points in his last four games to go with +4 and seven shots.  Desharnais has turned it on lately while lining up with Brendan Gallagher and Max Pacioretty.

 

 

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, December 2 through Sunday, December 8

 

Wednesday: 6 teams

Monday: 8 teams

Sunday: 10 teams

Friday: 12 teams

Tuesday: 18 teams

Thursday: 20 teams

Saturday: 22 teams

 

We’re back to the usual Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday schedule that we’ve all become accustomed to so the teams that play on Monday/Wednesday/Friday/Sunday (or a combination of the three) would fit your roster pretty well and maximize starts for you.

 

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

 

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thur

Fri

Sat

Sun

New Jersey Devils

X

 

X

 

X

X

 

Minnesota Wild

X

 

 

X

X

 

X

Montreal Canadiens

X

 

X

X

 

X

 

San Jose Sharks

 

X

 

X

X

 

X

New York Rangers

X

 

 

X

 

X

X

Chicago Blackhawks

 

X

 

X

X

 

X

 

Friday, November 29 to Thursday, December 5

Best Bets

Montreal (4.79) - 5 Games: @WSH, TOR, NJ, @NJ, BOS

Dallas (4.16) - 4 Games: CHI, EDM, @CHI, @TOR

Pittsburgh (4.08) - 4 Games: @TB, @FLA, @NYI, SJ

Edmonton (4.04) - 4 Games: @CBJ, @DAL, PHX, COL

NY Rangers (4.01) - 4 Games: @BOS, VAN, WPG, @BUF

Steer Clear

Vancouver (2.85) - 3 Games: @NYR, @CAR, @NSH

Calgary (2.86) - 3 Games: @ANH, @LA, PHX

St. Louis (2.87) - 3 Games: @SJ, @LA, NYI

Boston (2.91) - 3 Games: NYR, CBJ, @MTL

Washington (2.98) - 3 Games: MTL, @NYI, CAR

Saturday, November 30 to Friday, December 6

Best Bets

Phoenix (4.23) - 4 Games: CHI, @EDM, @CGY, @VAN

Chicago (4.05) - 4 Games: @PHX, DAL, @MIN, ANH

Vancouver (3.95) - 4 Games: @NYR, @CAR, @NSH, PHX

Minnesota (3.95) - 4 Games: @COL, PHI, CHI, @CBJ

Carolina (3.94) - 4 Games: VAN, @WSH, @NSH, SJ

Steer Clear

Boston (1.86) - 2 Games: CBJ, @MTL

Buffalo (1.95) - 2 Games: @NJ, NYR

St. Louis (2.02) - 2 Games: @LA, NYI

Winnipeg (2.04) - 2 Games: @NYR, @FLA

Washington (2.14) - 2 Games: @NYI, CAR

Sunday, December 1 to Saturday, December 7

Best Bets

Edmonton (4.31) - 4 Games: @DAL, PHX, COL, CGY

Detroit (4.21) - 4 Games: @OTW, PHI, @NJ, FLA

Dallas (4.16) - 4 Games: EDM, @CHI, @TOR, PHI

Ottawa (4.14) - 4 Games: DET, @FLA, @TB, TOR

Montreal (3.95) - 4 Games: NJ, @NJ, BOS, BUF

Steer Clear

Boston (1.76) - 2 Games: @MTL, PIT

Buffalo (1.81) - 2 Games: NYR, @MTL

Columbus (2.05) - 2 Games: TB, MIN

Washington (2.10) - 2 Games: CAR, NSH

Colorado (2.23) - 2 Games: @EDM, @CGY

Monday, December 2 to Sunday, December 8

Best Bets

NY Rangers (4.30) - 4 Games: WPG, @BUF, NJ, WSH

Chicago (4.26) - 4 Games: DAL, @MIN, ANH, FLA

Florida (4.16) - 4 Games: OTW, WPG, @DET, @CHI

Minnesota (4.04) - 4 Games: PHI, CHI, @CBJ, SJ

Montreal (3.95) - 4 Games: NJ, @NJ, BOS, BUF

Steer Clear

Buffalo (1.81) - 2 Games: NYR, @MTL

Columbus (2.05) - 2 Games: TB, MIN

NY Islanders (2.66) - 3 Games: PIT, @STL, @LA

Anaheim (2.70) - 3 Games: LA, @CHI, @STL

Boston (2.71) - 3 Games: @MTL, PIT, @TOR

Tuesday, December 3 to Monday, December 9

Best Bets

Chicago (4.26) - 4 Games: DAL, @MIN, ANH, FLA

Florida (4.16) - 4 Games: OTW, WPG, @DET, @CHI

Ottawa (4.14) - 4 Games: @FLA, @TB, TOR, PHI

Vancouver (4.05) - 4 Games: @NSH, PHX, COL, CAR

Toronto (3.93) - 4 Games: SJ, DAL, @OTW, BOS

Steer Clear

Buffalo (1.81) - 2 Games: NYR, @MTL

Winnipeg (2.04) - 2 Games: @FLA, @TB

Los Angeles (2.16) - 2 Games: @ANH, NYI

St. Louis (2.26) - 2 Games: NYI, ANH

Boston (2.71) - 3 Games: @MTL, PIT, @TOR

Wednesday, December 4 to Tuesday, December 10

Best Bets

Colorado (4.29) - 4 Games: @EDM, @CGY, @VAN, PHX

Detroit (4.25) - 4 Games: PHI, @NJ, FLA, @FLA

NY Rangers (4.24) - 4 Games: @BUF, NJ, WSH, NSH

Chicago (4.16) - 4 Games: @MIN, ANH, FLA, @DAL

Ottawa (4.14) - 4 Games: @TB, TOR, PHI, @BUF

Steer Clear

Los Angeles (1.97) - 2 Games: NYI, @MTL

Pittsburgh (2.81) - 3 Games: SJ, @BOS, CBJ

Columbus (2.90) - 3 Games: MIN, @PIT, NJ

Phoenix (2.95) - 3 Games: @CGY, @VAN, @COL

Buffalo (2.97) - 3 Games: NYR, @MTL, OTW

Thursday, December 5 to Wednesday, December 11

Best Bets

Chicago (5.21) - 5 Games: @MIN, ANH, FLA, @DAL, PHI

Colorado (4.29) - 4 Games: @EDM, @CGY, @VAN, PHX

NY Rangers (4.24) - 4 Games: @BUF, NJ, WSH, NSH

Ottawa (4.14) - 4 Games: @TB, TOR, PHI, @BUF

Florida (4.05) - 4 Games: WPG, @DET, @CHI, DET

Steer Clear

Phoenix (1.81) - 2 Games: @VAN, @COL

Pittsburgh (2.81) - 3 Games: SJ, @BOS, CBJ

Calgary (2.88) - 3 Games: COL, @EDM, BOS

Columbus (2.90) - 3 Games: MIN, @PIT, NJ

Los Angeles (2.92) - 3 Games: NYI, @MTL, @TOR

 


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