Havlat was back in full practice yesterday. He could be back this weekend. If so, expect a knee or groin injury by the middle of next week.

 

Samsonov will be back in the lineup tonight.

 

Patrick Lalime will start for the 'Hawks tonight.

 

Ryan Whitney's groin still bothers him, but it is getting better. He will be back within one to three games.

 

Nicklas Backstrom scored his first NHL goal last night. He played 21:50 and over 4:30 on the power play. It's a good sign for a turnaround.

 

In Tom Poti's second game back he played over 24 minutes and received more PP time than anyone on the team. He'll pick up the points soon.

 

Andrew Ladd is back skating again for the 'Canes. He should be practicing by early next week and may get back into games in a week or 10 days.

 

Vanek and Afinogenov are not scoring and I am getting a ton of emails asking for my thoughts on this. Vanek is looking like he will slip with a new contract. But really - how much could he possibly dip? He won't produce less than 65 points this year and frankly I think he'll get 75. Afinogenov is a better player than this too, but it's just a slump for him - remember last season he wasn't getting a lot of ice time either. He produces with little ice time. He'll be fine and he should end the year with 65-70 points in 70 games (he tends to get hurt).

 

Daymond Langkow left last night's contest in the second dazed. He likely has a concussion... but that is not official. If so, expect him out for one week minimum.

 

I see that Ondrej Pavelec has won two straight games and is getting the start tonight.

 

Ilya Kovalchuk will likely be in the lineup tonight. He will play through the back pain, which he says is very painful.

 

Look for Shea Weber to return to the lineup in a week or so.

 

Marian Gaborik is targeting a Sunday return from his groin injury. You know - I'm really not surprised that his groin kept him out for my entire vacation - despite him blowing it off as 'minor' before I left. 

 

Dobber here. Back and trying to get my head around the hockey events of the past week. I was in Cuba - not really a hockey hotbed, so I was out of the loop. So if I repeat any observations made by Hallsey or Angus in the past week, please bear with me.

 

Eric Lindros retired from the NHL yesterday. Band-Aid boy jokes aside (and I have had many over the past several years), from 1992 to 1999 he was a fantasy stud.

 

Dion Phaneuf was indeed back in the Calgary lineup Thursday. He didn't miss any games and he actually picked up his first point in seven.

 

The Avs picked up Jason Bacishishishuahua ...hua from the Blues for a late conditional draft pick. He will be the third stringer in Colorado, but has no fantasy impact right now. The Blues had goalies to spare, this frees up the logjam a little. Riksman was recalled from Sweden to play in the AHL.

 

Guillaume Latendresse missed last night's contest with a sore back/hip. Grabovski replaced him in the lineup.

 

The line of Kostitsyn, Kovalev and Plekanec combined for six points for the Habs last night, scoring both goals. I see Carey Price picked up the win and pushed his GAA down to 2.33 and SV% to .918. 

 

After missing four games due to a groin injury, defenseman Karel Rachunek returned to the Devils lineup against the Flyers. Rachunek picked up an assist and was a plus-3. He saw a lot of PP time but don't read into it - the Devils were on the PP a lot and he actually was on the second unit.

 

Wes Walz has missed the last three games for personal reasons and is contemplating retirement (reportedly). Not really of fantasy significance, but certainly interesting.

 

Speaking of not significant fantasy-wise, Chicago plugger Kevyn Adams is out for the season after tearing his ACL.

 

Simon Gamache cleared waivers and will join the Marlies.

 

After going pointless in two games, Simon Gagne missed last night's contest with... dizziness again. This is worrisome, and I would have no interest in him in a one-year rotisserie league at this point.

 

I see Sean Avery is back now. He picked up two points and was on the second PP unit last night in his third game back. Also, four PIM's of course.

 

As I've been saying, when Michel Oullet gets rolling - he really gets rolling. One of the streakier players in the league, he has eight points in his last nine games, including two last night. He played over 20 minutes, too. Grab him while he's hot.

 

Bochenski has gotten into five straight games and is seeing PP time, but has yet to record a point.

 

Kobasew has four points in four games. He is a little fragile, but has 65+ point ability and perhaps we're finally starting to see it.

 

Fleischmann has four points in seven games since being a healthy scratch for the Caps and is finally seeing some time on the PP.

 

Peter Mueller followed up his hat trick with a pair of assists last night and saw a pile of PP time. Now he's getting a chance to shine and I don't see it letting up soon. He is a far better offensive player than fellow rookie Martin Hanzal, so hopefully you stuck with him and did not push the panic button after his slow start.

 

I see the Stars recalled Chris Conner. He scored in his second game since the recall, but last night he was a minus-2. He is a small player who works hard and has a lot of talent, but may not fit the Dallas system. But keep an eye on him (assuming the coach forgives him for his minus-2, that is).

 

Jordan Staal is pointless in nine games.

 

Alexander Radulov has seven points in six games. He'll lead the Preds in scoring this year.

 

With Cory Stillman at 19 points in 13 games, you should start shopping him soon. Maybe give him another seven games or so. His eight-game point streak ended last night.

 

I'm very glad to see that Chris Mason has stopped 73 of 77 shots to go 1-0-1 in his last two. He will keep getting the starts, and I hope that he can build his confidence back up. Too bad I benched him in the Experts League during my vacation (I knew it would happen).

 

Travis Green has signed to play in the Swiss League - just an FYI

 

I see that David Krejci was demoted to the AHL a couple of days ago.  

 

Nearly 1000 emails. Yes, 80% of it is spam... but needless to say, if you sent me an email in the past 10 days there is a good chance that it won't be answered - hope you are taking advantage of the forum!

 

I want to take a moment to thank Hallsey for his work on the ramblings, Angus for helping out there as well, and of course Matt Bugg who posted the articles and pics over the past week. Thanks, Great Job! 

 

Still a couple of things to sort through (wedding today, b-day party Saturday) but should finally settle in and re-focus on the site come Sunday. Hey - half-assed is still better than other fantasy sites using their full ass! 


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