A few goalies changed addresses last night with Devan Dubnyk getting shipped off to Nashville for Matt Hendricks which left a hole in Edmonton, so they added Ben Scrivens for a third round pick. Wait, a third rounder for Scrivens? Talk about over paying! Scrivens is 27 years old and only now has he done anything worth note and that came on the heels of starter Jon Quick getting hurt. Had Quick not gone down this trade would have been missed by almost everyone and dismissed as a nonevent and it still should be. The Oilers’ defense is terrible and Scrivens’ incredible run was largely driven by that staunch LA defense, not Scrivens’ newly discovered skills. Don’t get me wrong, Scrivens played well, but not well enough to lose his job to Martin Jones in fairly short order, so it couldn’t have been that good. So, if you take that staunch Kings D and replace it with a porous Oilers’ D, what do you think will happen with Scrivens’ numbers? Right into the toilet, that’s what. While he may see a modest uptick in starts if he can earn a 1-B status to Ilya Bryzgalov‘s 1-A, and that’s a big if, this move does little to improve his fantasy value.
In the same vein, Devan Dubnyk will likely do the same thing he always has done, under perform and blame it on the D. Not saying that he personally blames his mediocre play on the defense, but he has a handful of apologists north of the border who love to sing that song. Well, it’s a lame song, like Kenny G lame, so don’t listen! Don’t get me wrong, Dubnyk does have an upside and it’s true that he hasn’t had an opportunity to show what he can do yet, or is it? Wouldn’t a better goalie have made more of the situation that Dubnyk did? I think so. Does he get the chance to prove the haters (me) wrong now? Nope! Pekka Rinne should be ready to return within the next few weeks and it seems the Preds are sick of the bleh duo of Carter Hutton and Marek Mazanec, so there you go. Dubnyk is a UFA after this season so you can expect him to walk and try and find a team that will offer him more opportunities than sitting behind Rinne in Nashville, so like the Scrivens deal, this does little to add to his value.
In the end it sounds like there was a lot of noise about nothing here. Neither move helps your fantasy team and if you need it to, you’re already done with this season of fantasy hockey. Hey, baseball is getting ready to spin back up again, so there’s that! Anyway, here’s what else I saw in a short night o’ fantasy hockey last night:
Frederik Andersen (1 GA, 31 SV, W) was called up because Jonas Hiller was sick and they needed a second goalie and preformed brilliantly yet again. The Ducks sent him down prior to this game because they wanted him to get some starts and with Hiller winning damn near every game he starts this season, how could they possibly justify giving Andersen more starts? They couldn’t, so they didn’t, and they’re likely to send him back down again soon.
Corey Perry (2 G, 2 A, 3 SOG, +2) lead the charge in the Ducks’ 9-1 destruction of the Canucks last night. What else can I say about Perry other than he plays as well as he does dirty, and he’s as dirty as a politician on the ice though I’m willing to bet he’s a far better skater.
Teemu Selanne (2 G, 1 A, 5 SOG, even) decided to come out of retirement for this game because it looked like his teammates were having so much fun. It took 19 years but Selanne has finally seen his production fall off a cliff after so many excellent seasons. Stick a fork in him, he’s done, but it’s great to see one last flash of greatness before he hangs up his skates. Who knows, maybe he’ll retire with the Cup in his hands.
Sami Vatanen (1 G, 2 A, 6 SOG, +1, 2 PIM) is a talented rookie defenseman that has great stick handling skills to go with smooth skating and a great understanding of the game. He’s on pace for 26 points in 72 games in this his rookie season, but the Ducks are so bloody good this year it’s hard to tell if his production is as result of his own skillset or, you know, the 50 goals a game the Ducks seem to pot. At any rate, he’s a puck mover, not a scorer, so he’ll be a power play specialist that Anaheim hopes will find a home on their second pairing.
Olli Maatta (1 G, 1 A, 3 SOG, +2) is another one of those talented rookie defensemen on a team that scores boatloads of goals, so his upside aside he’s a bit hard to gauge right now. That being said, he scored the first game-winning goal of his career last night and has four points in his last five games. He’s hovering around 18 minutes a game but doesn’t sniff time on the man advantage.
Matt Niskanen (2 A, 4 SOG, +2) is not another one of those talented rookie defensemen but he is on a team that scores boatloads of goals. He’s on pace for 43 points which would be a career best, he also leads the Pens with 5 game-winning goals so far this season, breaking the all-time franchise record for Pens dmen. He’s still available in 31% of Yahoo! Leagues in case you were wondering, so if you need help on you blue line, here you go!
Nick Bonino (2 G, 5 SOG, even) continues to have a great season and I don’t think it’s a “mini” breakout anymore, as I’ve previously dubbed his 2013-14 campaign. I grabbed him in a standard league where I had an open slot and need for a third center; I’d suggest you do the same if you need some scoring. The Ducks aren’t going to slow down much and I doubt Bonino will either.
Hampus Lindholm (2 A, 2 SOG, +2) remains the cream of the young defensive corps in Anaheim. The Ducks are being careful with him, but he could be on the top pairing for them within the next two seasons.
Jakob Silfverberg (1 G, 1 A, 3 SOG, +1) has four points over his last five and finally seems to be getting back into the groove he started the season with before he broke his hand. This kid is the centerpiece in the Bobby Ryan deal for the ducks and before his injury he was matching Ryan’s production almost tit for tat. The Ducks think he can fill Ryan’s shoes and I do too, just not this year. That being said, any Duck is worth owning when scoring and Jaks is a must own in all keeper leagues.
Ryan Getzlaf (2 A, +2) had a down night with just two points. Is he hurt?!
Jussi Jokinen (1 G, 1 A, 2 SOG, +1) is now on pace for his best season of his career. I guess I can’t hate on him anymore, though I had given in few posts ago and said go ahead and pick him up if you need scoring help. That still applies, though it pains me to admit it.
Alex Ovechkin (1 G, 6 SOG, +1) scored another goal, no way! That’s news! Also, the sky is blue and water is wet.
Marcus Johansson (2 A, 2 SOG, +1) would be having a decent season if not for that minus-7 he’s sporting. He’s a third year man and this season looks like a decent step forward for him though I wouldn’t own him right now outside of deeper/keeper leagues.
Andrew Cogliano (1 G, 5 SOG, +1) remains one of the few Ducks I’m meh on this season despite his team’s ridiculous offensive boom. He has three goals over his last five games but still looks like he’ll finish the season under 50 points, which makes everyone sadface, even his mom.
Francois Beauchemin (1 A, 1 SOG, +2) gets the award for most French name in the league, also the award for most useless fantasy defenseman. It’s a good day for Franky!
Evgeni Malkin (1 A, 4 SOG, +1, 4 PIM) has seen his pace slow a bit and only has six points in his last five games.
Ryan Miller (3 GA, 36 SV, L) has allowed one or three goals in each game dating back to Dec. 23, 2013. Not surprisingly whenever he lets in three the Sabres lose, when he holds opponents to just one, they sometimes win! It hurts to see a world-class goalie tend net for such a dismal squad.
Marc-Andre Fleury (3 GA, 25 SV, W) made Ryan Miller jealous by allowing three goals and still getting the win.
James Reimer (3 GA, 27 SV, W) also allowed three goals and still got the win. Now Ryan Miller is getting angry. At any rate, Jimmy at least took advantage of a rare start with a win, but did so in fairly ugly fashion letting in three goals on 30 shots. Jonathan Bernier is the clear cut no. 1 in Toronto these days so this Reimer start was just to give Bernier a rest. Had he done something more with the game, like say put up a shutout, the story might be different, but he didn’t, so it isn’t. There’s no Reimer reason to his season, ya’ll!
Mike Green (1 A, 1 SOG, +2, 4 PIM) won’t ever score 30 goals in a season again, I doubt he’ll see north of 20 again, but he remains relevant on pace for 45 points with 10ish goals mixed in. I’d buy that for a dollar!
Mason Raymond (1 A, 3 SOG, +1) had that one good year back in 2009-10 that made us all think he might be taking a step forward, or at least becoming the new Steve Downie with 50-plus points and 200-plus PIM that year. Since then his time in the sin bin has gone straight down hill along with, well, just about every other stat worth having. Basically what I’m saying is don’t bother.
Tyler Myers (1 A, 3 SOG, +1) had his best season as a rookie with 48 points and has gone down hill since. Huh, that seems like a theme in this post, eh? Guys who made you think, for a season or so, that they’d be incredible and then? Nada, zip, zilch, nada. Hell, in Myers’ case it’s not just nothing, it’s minus-14 and counting the wrong way.
Dmitry Orlov (1 A, 3 SOG, +1) demanded a trade not too long ago because he isn’t getting enough ice time and I have to agree. The up, down, up from the AHL to the NHL and back again nonsense the Caps brass is forcing on him doesn’t help him in any regard. Orlov is extremely talented but it seems like Washington just can’t find the TOI for him. When he gets to a place where he can get 20 minutes a game, he’ll start scoring in buckets. The best comparison I can give you is a young Mike Green.
Tyler Ennis (1 A, 4 SOG, even) would be having a fairly decent season if he was a defenseman, but he isn’t, he’s a winger, and that makes it pretty sad. But then he plays for the Sabres, so he’s fitting in just fine.
Ben Lovejoy (1 A, 4 SOG, even) pops up on the scoring sheet every now and then and each time I try to think of some Simpsons reference to use for him, but I can never come up with much. I figure it’s because Lovejoy is so yawnstipating I get bored thinking about him and fall asleep before I can come up with anything.
Patrick Maroon (1 A, 2 SOG, +1, 10 PIM) keeps spending most of his time in the sin bin, so if you’re in a deep league and need a PIM boost he might be worth a look. The fact that he’s only on pace for 23 points limits his value to the deepest or most desperate o’ leagues, though.
Joffrey Lupul (6 SOG, +1) is another guy that had that one good year a few seasons ago that made everyone think he was finally going to live up to the hype he entered the league with, and then nada. He continues his streak of doing nada last night with six shots on goal and nothing to show for it. After scoring 67 points in 66 games two seasons ago, Lupul isn’t worth owning anywhere.
Michal Neuvirth (4 GA, 33 SV, L) was given a start over Braden Holtby so that Philipp Grubauer could get some rest. That’s how highly the Caps think of Holtby these days, yikes. That was a quick fall from grace for Holtby, wasn’t it? Oh yeah, Neuvirth. He still sucks.