Pick up the updated Fantasy Baseball Guide here. And don't forget that DobberBaseball has content flowing daily. Let them know what you think of the new team of writers over there - leave a comment!

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Some injury notes, via James Mirtle and Bob McKenzie - Matt Frattin figures he is about a week away... Rene Bourque has a concussion and is out indefinitely... Andy McDonald limped out of practice today... James Wisniewski has a broken foot, solidifying his status as a future Band-Aid Boy Hall- of -Famer. Naturally I get that news an hour after the deadline in which I drop Nikita Nikitin - who will probably see a sudden uptick in production now.

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It's back woes that are keeping Martin Brodeur sidelined. Apparently not serious, thus the 'day-to-day' status. So for this week it looks like Hedberg will be the guy. Hedberg has lost the last two games, giving up nine goals. In fact, his start two weeks ago was a loss and five goals allowed. So he's on a tough run.

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Red Wings' Damien Brunner flourishing in NHL due to his maturity, Swiss experience and skill level - is the headline I just read. They could extend that headline by adding "and also a coach who will give a first-year player 20 minutes of ice time in a game after he produces no points in two games in which he saw 18 minutes each." But I guess that headline would be too long.

Not one other coach in the league would do that. None. And they should - because look at the dividends. Look at, for example, Cory Conacher. He saw 13:50 in his first game and 16:03 in his second game. If he had zero points in those games, he'd probably be looking at 12 minutes in Game 3. And then it would continue to drop until he was in the press box by Game 6. And TB would have missed out, just because he didn't produce in those two games. Because Conacher got seven points in his first four games, he earned himself a long leash. There are 29 other coaches who wouldn't even give Brunner 18 minutes in those first games, let alone continue to do so after two games of zero points. It's called having faith in the talent that you see. And if all coaches did that, then it would make picking prospects an easy task in fantasy hockey.

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The Hockey Writers takes a look at Minnesota youngsters Jason Zucker and Charlie Coyle in this piece.

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It's looking like Mike Green will be ready to play against the Hurricanes. However, Nicklas Backstrom is 'sick' and Marcus Johansson is still not ready to return. The team is contemplating calling up Casey Wellman, who is another one of those AHLers who deserves a longer look than he's gotten to date.

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Speculation is that Rick Nash actually has a concussion, as once again he was nowhere to be seen in practice. Dan Girardi (bruised foot) was in practice and Michael Del Zotto (LBI) was also back.

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Braden Holtby's contract extension will give him $1.7 million for next year and $2.0 the following year. Not enough for us to say "Wow - he's definitely going to be the starter!", the way we did for Devan Dubnyk.

On a non-fantasy note, the Caps also signed John Erskine - for more money than Holtby! Has George McPhee lost it? Erskine was a healthy scratch to start the year! You can go outside right now and find a John Erskine growing from your tree out front - because that's how common John Erskines are. They grow on trees.

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Ryane Clowe has been suspended for two games for his illegal line change/leave the bench thing. Actually, the NHL says his line change was legal…so he was suspended for, I don't know, having an 'e' at the end of Ryan, maybe.

Clowe has been horrible this season. He and Marty Havlat. And I was the proud owner of both until I traded Havlat and a pick upgrade to someone for Brassard on the weekend in my keeper league. Done. Done with both those guys.

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By many accounts, such as this one, Bobby Sanguinetti has finally adapted to the NHL - his game has steadily improved and he has been a plus player in each of his last three games (to go with two points). That article also said that Jiri Tlusty has been moved off the top line, which is a big uh oh for his owners.

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I remember two games into the season when a Buffalo fan was busting my balls about my picking them to miss the playoffs. Thomas Vanek was leading the league in scoring and the Sabres were 2-0-0. He was relentless to the point where I had to block him - and after four years I've only blocked three people on Twitter. Anyway, now I kind of wish I didn't. I mean - the Sabres are 4-12-1 since then. The trash talk I would come back with at this point... I am a petty, petty man.

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The Penguins have signed former Penguin Mark Eaton to a one-year deal. The contract likely means that Robert Bortuzzo could be sent down.  He is seeing nine minutes of ice time lately, or getting scratched altogether. Simon Despres is also getting scratched at times. Despres is pointless in five games with two healthy scratches thrown in as well.

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Teemu Hartikainen has been placed on IR with a suspected shoulder injury. The Oil stuck Lennart Petrell back in the lineup and he immediately picked up an assist last night. No, not worth grabbing. At all.

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Here's another weird signing. The Coyotes sign David Schlemko. He must have really impressed him with is tremendous, uh, press box abilities. Schlemko makes Rick DiPietro seem like an iron man. And the Coyotes have about 50 blue-chip defensemen on the way up. But they felt the need to sign a Band-Aid Boy immediately?

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And now for a good signing - the Red Wings give Brian Lashoff a three-year extension.

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Those of you wondering where Roman Josi has been - there he is! Four-point night, including the overtime winner. Again, the Predators prove they can score, teasing us poolies as they go back into their defensive shell.

The Craig Smith goal gives him three points in five games. Not great, but better than the one point in 15 games that he had before that.

Sergei Kostitsyn has six points in six games.

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Dallas goalie Cristopher Nilstorp has given up four or more goals in two of his last three starts. He still has just the one win. Richard Bachman hasn't been any better - and Kari Lehtonen is still questionable for next game.

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The Blackhawks - now it's just getting funny. They can be down 5-3 in entering the third and I still assume they'll win. The goalies are looking like demi-gods, when in fact they are average netminders behind the best team.

Michal Rozsival has seven points in nine games this season for Chicago and is plus-9. Just four shots on goal for the season, but he makes an interesting depth option.

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Francois Beauchemin's career high is 34 points. He's now on pace to beat that in a shortened season.

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Ben Bishop, who was one of the NHL's stars for last week, stopped 44 of 45. Take away his brutal first start on January 25 and he has yet to give up more than two goals (four starts and a relief appearance).

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Tye McGinn vs. Mike Brown:


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Comments (5)add comment

Captain Krunch said:

Captain Krunch
... Hahaha Erskine with a goal.....must be all that money!!
February 26, 2013
Votes: +0

Ross The Boss Palmer said:

Ross The Boss Palmer
John Erskine Grows on Trees Now that you mention it, I see there are a few of him in my front yard. Can't believe I didn't notice that before.
February 26, 2013
Votes: +1

Reddawg said:

Reddawg
Omark Any thoughts on what Damien Brunner's success might mean for Linus Omark's chances of getting another good shot at the NHL? Same team in the Swiss league, similar production level, basically the same size and Omark is younger and doing it all by himself now that Brunner and Zetterberg have left town.
February 26, 2013
Votes: +0

mounD said:

mounD
Despres I feel like the Penguins should just send Despres down to the A, so he can eat up 25 minutes/night instead of the healthy scratch every other game. Bortuzzo can handle any added minutes thrown his direction - I totally agree with Carcillo on this one, Bortuzzo is definitely a solid depth NHL defenseman who can throw his weight around and make the smart play.

The Eaton move is honestly a bit confusing in this regard, but any added depth on the back end with legit NHL experience is never a bad thing, right?
February 26, 2013
Votes: +0

Carcillo said:

Carcillo
...
The Penguins have signed former Penguin Mark Eaton to a one-year deal. The contract likely means that Robert Bortuzzo could be sent down. He is seeing nine minutes of ice time lately, or getting scratched altogether. Simon Despres is also getting scratched at times. Despres is pointless in five games with two healthy scratches thrown in as well.


There's no way Bortuzzo gets sent down. He's waiver eligible and has been great this year. Eaton won't leap ahead of him in the depth charts. He's just signed for some depth with NHL experience.

If someone gets sent down, it's Despres as he doesn't need to go through waivers. I sure hope that doesn't happen because of Eaton. If it happens, it needs to happen because they want to give regular minutes to Bortuzzo.
February 26, 2013
Votes: +0
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