Ryan Ma analyzes past December trends to figure out which players will pop this month


We’re now into the third month of this fantasy campaign and there have certainly been plenty of surprises and disappointments. I’m a big believer in historical numbers, which is why I’m dedicating this week’s column on looking at past performances for predicting the future. Obviously, no one owns a crystal ball, which can gaze into the future, so one logical way to help us plan for the future is to taking a glance at the past. This week we’ll take a look at 12 players who might be in store for a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


As always before the good stuff let’s take a look at a few:

Maaasquito Buzzings…

Players in the last seven days with the highest production in each category who are less than 50% owned in Yahoo leagues.






Miettinen (4)

Brunette (6)

Smid (6)

Brunette (3)

Williams (16)

Stewart (4)

Stewart (3)

Simmonds (5)

Stoll (3)

Stoll (15)

Pyatt (3)

Stoll (3)

Miettinen (4)

Williams (2)

Stewart (14)

Duchene (3)

Whitney (3)

Sullivan (4)

Stewart (2)

Duchene (13)

Richardson (3)

Johnson (3)

Brunette (4)

Whitney (2)

Tootoo (11)


Maaaasquito Bite of the week: Chris Stewart

Stewart now has 19 points in 27 contests and is on one hell of a hot streak since joining Paul Stastny on the Avalanche top-line. He’s now amassed 13 points along with 26 SOG in the last nine games. The former first round pick is definitely a great injury replacement for owners that lost Teemu Selanne last week to the IR. What’s great with Stewart is that he also plays with an edge. In 269 contests between the OHL and AHL, he has picked up 366 PIMs along the way while picking up 36 in the big leagues this season. He’s averaging 17:30 in ice-time in the last seven contests, while sharing the team lead in PP ice-time in last night’s 4-0 shutout win over the Blues. Definitely make a pitch at the seven percent Yahoo-owned winger if you are in need of help on the right side.


Jarret Stoll – C – Los Angeles Kings

Stoll has a career 0.71 point-per-game average in the month of December compared to his next highest month of February at 0.66. The Kings have 14 games this month, which means that Stoll should be on pace for 10 points this month. He currently has a 1.33 point-per-game along with a four SOG average in three contests this month, which means he’s well on his way to supporting his career December numbers. He’s only 25 percent Yahoo-owned and should be given strong consideration if you are lacking depth up the middle.


Antti Miettinen – RW – Minnesota Wild

Miettinen has been on a hot-streak of late since being promoted to the Wild top-line alongside Andrew Brunette and Mikko Koivu. He has eight points and 18 SOG in his last seven contests for the Wild and doesn’t appear to be slowing down. Miettinen doesn’t have show-stopping numbers, but his career December numbers of 0.60 points-per-game is certainly much higher than his career average of 0.43 per contest. He’s presently only five percent owned in Yahoo leagues, so if you missed out on Stewart, definitely consider Miettinen as option two.


Joffrey Lupul – LW/RW – Anaheim Ducks

If you are looking for a poster boy for the month of December, look no further than the Duck winger. Lupul has a career 0.79 point-per-game average for the month of December compared to his overall career average of 0.57. The last month of the calendar year is by far the best month statistically for him, which could be easily represented with his three goals so far this month. The Anaheim offense is currently stuck in a rut, so Lupul might play a key role in helping them out of that hole. Playing 15 games in a month also doesn’t hurt...


Dustin Brown – RW- Los Angeles Kings

Brown has a career 0.56 point-per-game average, which isn’t ground-breaking news by any means. What you should keep a note of is his 0.69 career point-per-game average for the month of December. His current three points in four contests is probably a good indication of the numbers we should expect from Brown in the next 24 days. He’s currently 84 percent owned in Yahoo leagues, which means that acquiring him via trade is probably your only option. If you are a Brown-owner that’s probably a bit of good news you have been waiting to hear.


Kris Versteeg – LW – Chicago Blackhawks

After a hot start last season, we were all wondering if he was the real deal at this point exactly one-year ago. 365 days later, we now know what his potential can be. Last season he finished with nine points in 11 December contests, while this season he has two points in three matches. The Hawks recently tweaked their lines by trialling Versteeg as their second line center, but last contest they moved Versteeg back to his natural position on the wing alongside Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa. Playing with two potential superstars will certainly help generate a tonne of offense for any player. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Versteeg finished at a greater than point-per-game pace for the rest of this month. If you are looking for trade targets definitely have him on your radar.


Daymond Langkow – C – Calgary Flames

I don’t know what it is that makes Langkow play so astonishingly in the month of December. He has a mind-boggling 0.79 point-per-game average in the festive month, which is nearly 0.15 higher than his overall career average. Perhaps he’s always in a “giving” mood, or maybe he just enjoys all the Christmas carols that are playing throughout Cow-town, who knows? Either way with 14 games on their plate for December, look for Langkow to have a very festive season.


Pavel Datsyuk – C – Detroit Red Wings

Speaking of festive moods, the Red Wings are desperate for a happy one this year with all the struggles they’ve experienced so far this campaign. One historical bright spot which might help their cause is Datsyuk. The electrifying Russian has a career 1.20 point-per-game average for the month of December, which is nearly 0.22 more than his overall career average. If Datsyuk can finish the 14-game December schedule with a 1.20 point-per-game average, it might just lead to a snowball effect to wake up the slumbering offense in the Motor City.


Mike Ribeiro – C – Dallas Stars

It doesn’t get very cold in Big D during Christmas time, which the same could be said about Ribeiro’s career December numbers. The Stars’ offense currently ranks 11th overall due largely in part of the play from the 10-year NHL veteran. He’s recently been reunited alongside Brendan Morrow and Jamie Benn, who have had plenty of success earlier on this campaign. It should be a splendid upcoming month for Ribeiro and co.


Kristian Huselius – LW – Columbus Blue Jackets

Much like the aforementioned players, Huselius also seems to enjoy the Christmas period, as he has a career 0.82 point-per-game in the month of December. The Jackets have enhanced their offense to sixth overall this season, which is a huge improvement compared to their 22nd ranked offense a year ago. With the continued success into December, look for Juice to ride the coat tail of Rick Nash in the 13 remaining contests of this month.


Sheldon Souray – D - Edmonton Oilers

The oft-injured band-aid boy typically has his healthiest/most productive month in December. He has a career final month average of 0.47 points-per-game, which is nearly 42 percent higher in production than in the month of April. Much like the Red Wings, the Oilers are entering desperation mode and urgently need wins. Souray might just be the saviour that Pat Quinn needs to help rev up the snoozing offense.


Kyle Wellwood – C – Vancouver Canucks

Wellwood isn’t a household name, but his numbers of 0.59 in December is certainly something that you should take a note of. The Nucks are desperately in need of some secondary scoring and Wellwood might be a prime candidate to provide just that for them. He’s recently been partnered up with Mikael Samuelsson and Steve Bernier on the Vancouver second line, which has produced some chemistry. With 15 contests on tap for the Nucks, look for eight or nine points from the one percent owned, Wellwood, this month.


Questions or comments? Like always I’ll be ready and willing to discuss them with you in the comments section below. We’ll see you back here once again next week as we discuss more news coming from the Western Conference.


Write comment
Comments (4)add comment

Jocular Hockey Manager said:

... Seems like a pretty good time to me to consider moving Hejduk for Lupul.

- both are top 6
- Hejduk much older
- similar scoring history over past few seasons (Lupul hotter/colder)
- similar injury factors
- similar salary structures

Hejduk is coming to the end of the line, thus you are risking little. Lupul, inconsistent fellow that he is, continues to get nice opportunities. I would suggest that he's also at a point where one might wonder if he'll finally settle down a bit. The fact that he has 15 games in December (a busy schedule) also doesn't hurt my feelings. Lupul is rolling good right now. Do remember though, that Lupul has been a hot/cold player.
December 09, 2009
Votes: +0

hammer-nuts said:

Re: Wellwood Wellwood is on what is considered the 2nd line. Kesler/Raymond/Hansen or Samualson usually comprise the 2nd line based on ice time. I wouldn't waste my time with Wellwood.
December 09, 2009
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

... RE: Hejduk for Lupul

I would make the move, Hejduk was demoted to the second line alongside Duchene and Svatos the last few games, while Stewart (mentioned above) was lining up alongside Stastny and Wolski... Stastny is much more talented than Duchene (at the moment) so I see Hejduk slumping a bit until(if) he gets reunited with the top-line.

As for Lupul I think he's going to be a prime breakout candidate. He's getting top-line time alongside Getz and Perry, while Ryan is on the second line with Koivu. Lupul is a scorer, but just bitten by the injury bug... He'll be on or just a tad below the point-per-game pace the rest of the way.

Great swap!
December 09, 2009
Votes: +0

Babalou said:

Big Ev
... Would it be worth trading away Hejduk for Lupul and riding his hot December?
December 08, 2009
Votes: +0
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please register if you do not have an account yet.