Don't forget to challenge myself and Dobber in a one-day fantasy hockey challenge. Free to join, takes just a minute or two to pick your 10 players (unless you want to really do your homework to try to take us down), and the Top 10 finishers get a piece of the $300 prize. Details here.

 

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The 2013 Hobey Baker was awarded to St. Cloud forward Drew LeBlanc, and he celebrated by inking a one-year deal with the Blackhawks.

 

LeBlanc is a do-it-all forward who had 50 points in 52 games this season (he missed most of his junior year due to injury, so it was nice to see him bounce back).

 

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I love the effect/impact Ray Whitney is having on the young Stars right now - he's the pulse of that team, and it looks like it took a few trades for that to shine through. In particular, he has been finding terrific chemistry with Alex Chiasson, who continues to play an experienced game well beyond his years. He's big, gritty, fast, and smart. The total package - well ahead of where I expected him to be in his first pro season.

 

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Jake Allen let in four goals on 19 shots - he was thoroughly outdueled by Sergei BOBROVSKY. The Jackets and Blues both play "heavy" games (lots of dump-ins and hitting, big forwards). The Blues had momentum until the Jackets hit the scoresheet. 

 

Acquiring a player like Gaborik allows the other forwards to relax and focus on other things (not that players don't always focus on scoring, but it isn't as imperative now with a legitimate sniper on the roster).

 

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Craig Anderson was great, and the Senators gave him enough goal support - classic "road game" for Ottawa last night. Rookie forward Jean-Gabriel Pageau scored his first career NHL goal in his first career NHL game - I'd say that's a good way to extend the call up.

 

 

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A great scouting report on Avs prospect Sami Aittokallio from Justin Goldman. Aittokallio. Aittokallio. Aittokallio. Just working on my spelling.

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Sounds like Tyler Toffoli is going to make the move to left wing on a full time basis - great news for his short term upside, as the Kings are (relatively) thin there compared to C and RW.

 

 

Great news out of Boston - Patrice Bergeron is making progress from his concussion and could be back soon. This is the fourth diagnosed concussion of his career, and it would be a shame to see his career cut short in any way - he's one of the best two-way forwards in the world.

 

He travelled with the team to Carolina for today's game, but it doesn't sound like he is going to play.

 

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I didn't expect Alex Galchenyuk to be this impactful as a teenager - his game has grown and evolved as the season has gone on (he now has points in five straight games). Big time upside... the next Montreal superstar? I'd place my chips on "yes."

 

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Seahawks All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman paid a visit to the Canucks last week - he's a funny dude. Check out the interviews here.

 

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He has been solid defensively this season (from what I have seen...), but is Erik Johnson's offense ever going to come? Four assists in 29 games. I wrote a big piece on him last summer (I started doing research for my own pool, but then turned it into a column after digging up some interesting numbers - really has stalled, and it doesn't appear to be directly related to the knee injury).

 

Any Colorado fans have more thoughts on EJ?

 

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Not only has Mikhail Grabovski been relegated to a checking/shutdown role this year, but he's had some health issues this year. May help to explain his drop in production (buy low time):

 

 

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How are your fantasy league playoffs going? Desperate times right now, I picked up Gregory Campbell off the wire the other day (short a center with the Marchand concussion).


I've gotten lucky with Schneidongo's hot streak lately, too. Having 1.5 starting goaltenders has been really tough all year - my other goalies are Steve Mason and Peter Budaj (I kid you not). 


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Good news on the injury front for the Caps:

 


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Today’s NHL sleeper roundup – the Buffalo Sabres:


Sabres


Sleeper – Johan Larsson

 

Larsson is a well-rounded forward who was the centerpiece of the Jason Pominville trade. The Wild were comfortable moving him because of their other prospects (they boast depth that most other teams could only dream of).


Back to Larsson. He scored his first goal with Rochester after the trade the other day, but the Amerks have been gutted with all of Buffalo’s defensive woes/injuries.


I could see Larsson stepping in to a second or third line role next year – the Sabres need some two-way stability up the middle, and he could be one of the guys to help provide that.


Here is his DobberProspects profile.

 

Deep sleeper – Joel Armia

 

Armia is a guy who I have gotten asked about a lot over the years (especially in my weekly/monthly mailbags). Big winger with offensive upside, but he has taken the long route with his development.


He’s had three really strong seasons over in Finland, and it sounds like he is ready to make the jump over to the North American ranks. His offensive ability is really impressive for a 6-3 forward – I could see him making quick work of the AHL and playing big minutes for the Sabres really soon.


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Erm… what?



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The Flyers have signed former Columbus prospect Petr Straka. Straka had a great year in the Q in 2012-13 (albeit as an overage forward).


Here is Straka’s DobberProspects profile. Brendan Ross’s most recent thoughts:


Straka posted 41 goals and 41 assists for 82 points for the Baie-Comeau Drakker. He has dominated the QMJHL playoffs producing eight goals and 18 points through eight games. Straka enters a Flyers organization that is relatively shallow so he will be presented with a good opportunity.


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Write comment
Comments (9)add comment

Dunnder said:

Dunnder
Ott I love Steve Ott and the way he plays, and i would be happy to have him on any of my favourite nhl teams or any of my fantasy teams. he is finally old enough and mature enough to do silly things like this that dont get him any penalties, but effectiely throw his opponents off their games. Love it! Edmonton could really use a player like him.
April 13, 2013
Votes: +0

rob2kx said:

rob2kx
The Hockey Hitman "Seriously someone needs to take Ott out. Disgraceful."

I agree. I have NEVER seen anything more SHAMELESS. Someone should kill him. It's a DISGRACE. Seriously. Someone needs to take him out. LICKING A VISOR? He should be banned from the NHL for life and should even face prison time. I don't think he should even be allowed to keep his citizenship. This is TRULY SICK behavior.

Yesterday I saw a guy pretend to steal his kid's nose. But it was just his thumb! It wasn't even the kid's nose! DISGRACEFUL. He should go to jail. Or even DEATH ROW. Awful, degenerate behavior.
April 13, 2013
Votes: +0

pbhockey4 said:

pbhockey4
Erik Johnson As an Avs fan who has only been able to watch a handful of games (so take this opinion with a grain of salt), the general consensus on Avs message boards is that if EJ were paired with a competent partner who could actually play defense, EJ would be contributing more offensively. Unfortunately with the sieve that is the Avs D this year, EJ has been more relied upon to be a shutdown guy, and the emergence of Barrie (and to some degree Stefan Elliott) has put even less incentive on EJ to shoulder the offensive load. While I would guess that EJ's upside is capped more around the 35-40ish range in his BEST seasons from here out, signing a good partner for him would definitely help his offensive production. However, guys like Barrie and Elliott are the offensive dynamos that the Avs are hoping will develop into PP1 and offensive leaders (from the back end). EJ likely won't be looked to as "the man" for offense, and thus his offensive upside will be capped as a result.
April 13, 2013
Votes: +1

germant said:

germant
Your App Hey Angus! Great ramblings...as usual.

Just wondering if the app you were plugging a few weeks back is still under development? Mine hasn't worked in a long time now. smilies/sad.gif
April 13, 2013
Votes: +1

goose191919 said:

goose191919
Schneidongo Why does it not surprise me that Angus has BOTH Canucks goalies on his fantasy team? I literally chuckled and shook my head at the computer when I read that.
April 13, 2013
Votes: +0

The Hockey Hitman said:

The Hockey Hitman
ott Seriously someone needs to take Ott out. Disgraceful.
April 13, 2013 | url
Votes: +0

Corstyles said:

Corstyles
Taking advantage of your opportunity It's common knowledge around the NHL that Jeff Halpern has the tastiest visor in the league.
April 13, 2013
Votes: +2

SeaDawg said:

SeaDawg
Jean-Gabriel Pageau Just a minor point that last night was Jean-Gabriel Pageau's second game. He played the night before against Philly. I watched most of that game and he was very good. Tenacious, gritty, and you can tell he has some serious skills. He got an assist on Alfredsson's empty net goal, so along with the game-winning goal last night, he now has 2 pts in 2 games. Ottawa has done a phenomenal job of finding these young players and putting them in roles to succeed.
April 12, 2013
Votes: +0

Ken Shultz said:

kshultz
Faceoff If you don't want Steve Ott to lick you in the eye, then don't face off against him.

I don't see what the problem is.
April 12, 2013
Votes: +0
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