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We’re changing things up with the lede today, and by we I mean me!  Carey Price was definitely the least valuable player of Thursday night.  The superstar goaltender was lit up like a Christmas tree by the Wild allowing 7 goals on 24 shots.  In his last 6 starts, Price has allowed, 7, 4, 3, 1, 4, and 4 goals.  To say it’s been a rough two weeks would be like saying repealing Obamacare is a bad idea.  No kidding!  Sorry, couldn’t help myself.  Anyways, how high is the panic meter on Price in my eyes from 1 to 10, 10 being highly concerned?  Maybe a 3?  We know how good of a goalie he is, I’m not overly concerned over a poor stretch.  I doubt you’ll be able to buy low on him but it’s at least worth kicking the tires and finding out.  Look for Price to get back on track sooner than later.  Let’s take a look at what else happened around the league the last two nights:

Roberto Luongo – 29 saves on 30 shots in the 2-1 win over the Islanders.  Strombone is rolling right now; get him right back into your lineup Friday night against the same Islanders.

Vincent Trocheck – Assist with a shot.  There are very few players who have done better than Trocheck in the last two weeks.  He’s still available in over 40% of leagues so be sure to grab him if he happens to still be on the wire in your league.

Nick Leddy – Goal on two shots.  He’s very fringe right now.  He’s on pace for 35ish points with a poor plus-minus, little penalty minutes and below average shots.  There is some upside but I’d rather stay away at the moment.

Sven Andrighetto – Goal and two assists with two shots over two games.  He’s an okay streamer at this point now that he’s been recalled again.

Nathan Beaulieu – Two assists with four shots.  At this point, I’d call Beaulieu must own.  The minutes are so big, including on the power play, that he’s accumulating solid numbers across the board.

Phillip Danault – Two goals with four penalty minutes.  Elite streamer while he centers the first line.

Brian Flynn – Goal and an assist with two shots.  Walter Jr. doesn’t have much fantasy value.

Artturi Lehkonen – Two goals and an assist with five shots.  He’s currently in the top six but not getting power play time so I’m not streaming him right now but I’m monitoring Lehkonen.

Shea Weber – Two assists with seven shots and four penalty minutes.  It looks like last season’s drop in PIM were the fluke.  There’s a chance we get a career high in assists as well.

Bryan Little – Goal and an assist with two shots.  He’s available in almost 50% of leagues yet Little has 16 points in 21 games.  I’m not really sure why he’s this widely available.

Mark Scheifele – Two goals.  The shot rate is dropping off yet Scheifele is on pace for 38+40 with 50 PIM over 82 games.  Seems pretty good.

Drew Stafford – Two assists and a shot.  He’ll be an elite streamer while he’s in the top six.

Patric Hornqvist – Goal on seven shots over two games.  Hornqvist has quietly been terrific across the board with a massive shot rate.

Phil Kessel – Two assists with nine shots.  His six game point streak snapped Wednesday but I don’t think anyone is complaining with Kessel sitting at a point per game.

Evgeni Malkin – Goal and an assist with three shots.  Just stay healthy!

Nicklas Backstrom – Goal and three assists with two shots.  I’ve said it a bunch but it bears repeating: Backstrom’s willingness to shoot the puck again has brought his game back to an elite level.  It had been declining for three years so it’s nice to see it come back.

John Carlson – Two assists with five shots.  That’s three multi-point games in the last five for Carlson.  I obviously don’t expect that pace to last but this is the player I expect in the second half.

T.J. Oshie – Three assists with a shot and six PIM.  Not a bad game in his return.  He’s crushing five categories right now while being decent enough in shots.

Alex Ovechkin – Two goals on seven shots putting him over 1,000 points in his illustrious career.  The Great Eight is rolling right now and he’s almost taken his usual spot on the top of the shots on goal leaderboard.

Braden Holtby – 30 saves on 32 shots in the 5-2 win over the Penguins.  I’ll take Holtby as the #1 goalie for the rest of the season.

Mikkel Boedker – Assist with five shots.  I watched this game and Boedker was making a real impact on a regular basis.  I’d stream him Saturday against the Blues and go from there.

Brent Burns – Goal and an assist with three goals.  It’s absurd what this guy is doing right now.

Joe Pavelski – Assist with six shots and two penalty minutes.  He’s heating up with a four game point streak as he stays on course to get 70+ points for the fourth straight season.

Mikael Backlund – Two assists with a shot.  Backlund remains firmly on the fringe of holding in 12’ers right now.

Dougie Hamilton – Goal and an assist with two shots.  He’s still an elite #2 or bottom end #1 defenseman due to his solid numbers in all categories besides plus-minus.

Matthew Tkachuk – Goal and an assist with five shots and two PIM.  The fact that Tkachuk is still available in 65% of leagues is blasphemy.  The kid is on pace for 55 points, +20 and 150 penalty minutes.  Don’t leave that on the waiver wire.

Chad Johnson – 25 saves on 27 shots in the 3-2 win over the Sharks.  Despite Brian Elliott getting some extra starts lately, this is still Johnson’s job.

Markus Granlund – Two goals on four shots.  He’s an okay streamer right now while he’s in the top six.

Jayson Megna – Two assists with two shots.  Meh, nothing to see here in all honesty.

Troy Stecher – Two assists with five shots.  Stetcher has some long term upside but for now, he’s only a deep league option.

Brandon Sutter – Goal and an assist with five shots.  Same story as Granlund although I do prefer Sutter over him.

Sean Couturier – Goal and an assist with five shots and two PIM playing almost 23 minutes.  I think Couts will get back to elite streamer / bottom end hold status in the second half.

Brayden Schenn – Goal on four shots with two PIM.  These Flyers lines really need to go back to how they were.  When you’re a top heavy team, don’t try to balance everything out, let those guys crush together.  Anyways, Schenn is rolling right now with goals in three straight with elite shots.  The plus-minus is starting to get a little problematic though.

Derick Brassard – Two assists with three shots.  I think I’d grab Brassard if he’s available in your league.  He’s taken at least three shots in each of the last five games and has five points in that span.  He finally looks settled in again.  At the least, I’d be trying to stream him as often as possible.

Erik Karlsson – Two assists with three shots.  Hey Guy Boucher, start playing Karlsson more minutes and stop with the Ceci-Phaneuf bullshit getting more minutes than your best player.  Not so hot take coming here.

Mike Condon – 29 saves on 30 shots in the 4-1 win over the Penguins.  I’d still try to sell high but I’m comfortable rolling him in all starts at the moment.

Evander Kane – Goal on seven shots with sixteen penalty minutes.  Just like Tkachuk, I have no idea why Kane is sitting on so many waiver wires.

Ben Bishop – 24 saves on 26 shots in his first game back, a 4-2 win over the Sabres.  Although the numbers are fine, Bishop looked very shaky between the pipes.  I’d be hesitant to play him against Columbus tonight if he starts.

Nikita Kucherov – Goal on four shots with two PIM.  Pretty, pretty, pretty good.

Vladislav Namestnikov – Assist with four shots.  He was buzzing all night centering the first line so stream him tonight (spoiler alert!).

Ondrej Palat – Two goals and an assist with five shots.  He’s heating up and is also available in 50% of leagues.  He’s another guy I’d like to hold but I realize that’s a handful of guys and you’re unable to claim them all.  I’ll be sure to rundown another list of these guys on the next podcast with Reid.  I’d probably put Palat behind the PIM guys and Maroon but ahead of everyone else.

Jusse Saros – 35 saves on 36 shots in the 2-1 win over the Bruins.  This kid is so damn good.  I’m all in long term.  All aboard the Saros train!

Austin Watson – Goal on two shots.  Strong streamer until the Predators get healthier.

Tuukka Rask – 3 saves on 12:49 before leaving the game after a slapshot to his mask.  Hopefully it’s not a concussion so Rask will be back very soon.

Torey Krug – Goal on two shots.  Finally two goals in two games!  Maybe he’ll finally get on the good side of variance.

Matt Dumba – Three assists with two shots.  The minutes are down a bit lately but Dumba is still worth holding.

Nino Niederreiter – Two goals on three shots.  Nothing has changed for Nino all year; he’s basically the king of streamers.

Jared Spurgeon – Two assists with a shot.  He’s a clear hold if your league includes blocked shots.  Otherwise, it’s right on the fringe.

Eric Staal – Goal and two assists.  Staal now has a four game point streak in which he totaled eight points.  It’s crazy but Staal is easily a top 20 forward on the season now.

Ryan Suter – Goal and an assist.  Well on his way to a career high in goals while already being +26.

Devan Dubnyk – 20 saves on 21 shots getting the 7-1 win over Montreal.  I hope your league doesn’t include shutouts if you own Dubnyk because you took an awful beat here.  The Canadiens scored their one goal with 9 seconds left.

Anthony Mantha – Assist with four shots and two PIM.  I’m going to be all in on Mantha next year.  So damn good.

Gustav Nyquist – Goal and an assist with three shots playing over 21 minutes.  If the minutes are there, Nyqvist is going to be a monster.  Stream him when you can right now.

Henrik Zetterberg – Goal and an assist.  He was ice cold before this game but Zetterberg has been better than I expected.  The young guys, especially Mantha, have helped him a ton.  That saiad, the shots have gone to below average now so I wasn’t completely off.

John Klingberg – Goal on two shots.  Despite scoring five goals, nobody on the Stars had multiple points.  Klingberg is hotter than a pistol right now; hopefully you held onto him during his struggles.

John Gibson – 33 saves on 34 shots in the 4-1 win over Colorado.  Somewhere, there is a Gibson owner who is doing the Kirk Gibson celebration right now for John’s resurgence.

Ryan Getzlaf – Assist, +2 in his return from injury.  It’s been extremely assist heavy this year but Getzlaf is still providing plenty of value.

Rickard Rakell – Goal and an assist with two shots.  He had been ice cold and it’s hard to say he’s turned things around after a game with Colorado.  That said, the Ducks get Arizona on Saturday so be sure to get all of the Ducks in your lineup tomorrow.

Nathan MacKinnon – Goal on six shots.  He’s so damn good.  Part of me wants the Avs to get the first pick in the draft to get someone to support MacKinnon and another part of me wants the Avs to get the worst pick possible to punish them for their stupidity.

Taylor Hall – Assist with two shots and four penalty minutes.  Not the massive revenge game I thought but Hall was still a force in this game.  He’s still incredibly underrated.

Kyle Palmieri – Goal on three shots with five PIM.  He’s an elite streamer right now but I wouldn’t hold Palmieri any longer.

Leon Draisaitl – Goal and two assists.  I can’t remember a 21 year old having a massive season and not getting any press.  It seems impossible for somebody who is on pace for 75 points to be under the radar but it feels that way because of his center.

Connor McDavid – Two assists with four shots.  He’s in another mini goal drought but everything will be just fine.

Patrick Maroon – Goal on three shots.  Pick that man up.

Dustin Brown – Two assists with a shot.  I still want nothing to do with him outside of deep leagues that include hits.

Jeff Carter – Two assists.  Dude is a machine.

Marian Gaborik – Two assists.  He’s been pretty disappointing since he returned so watch Gaborik but don’t do anything with him yet.

Jake Muzzin – Two goals on five shots and two PIM.  He’s picking it up a lot lately with 5 points in the last 5 with solid shots.  Everyone is desperate for defenseman so you can grab Muzzin for the upside he’s shown the last 2.5 seasons.

Tanner Pearson – Two goals on three shots.  Pearson is worth owning right now and it’s not even close.  I’ll certainly include him in the list of guys for the next podcast.

Peter Budaj – 21 saves on 22 shots in the 5-1 win over the Blues.  Nice bounceback from Budaj after the dud against the Stars.  Keep riding him while it’s his job.

Friday Streamers:

Vladislav Namestnikov (3.6%) – As mentioned above, he was buzzing last night.  It sounds like Bob is going to miss this game again so load up on your Lightning players if Anton Forsberg is in.

Derek Ryan (4.3%) – The Hurricanes are on fire at home and the Sabres will be coming in on the second of a back to back.  Nice spot for the top Canes players and since Ryan plays with them, he’s a nice play as well.

Drew Stafford (2.2%) – As mentioned above, keep rolling Stafford while he’s in the top six.  You won’t find a better spot for using him than against the Coyotes tonight.

That’s all for now guys.  I’ll be back on Monday recapping all of the weekend’s action.  As always, feel free to ask any questions and leave any comments below.  Thanks for reading; take care!

  1. luvpho says:
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    Hey Viz!

    I have Mason who is stinking up my combo of Dubnyk and Bob. Should I swap him out for Lehner?

    Also, would you swap Sedin, Mantha or Rakell for E Kane?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @luvpho: hmm, yeah I think I’d do that. Mason looks horrible. For the forwards, it depends on team build but if you need shots and PIM, I would drop Sedin

  2. Scott says:
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    Are you keeping Athanasiou for tomorrow’s game against Pit?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Scott: I mean, there are 12 games Saturday so I’m not sure how badly you’ll need him Although he didn’t score yesterday, he stuck on that second line. If you have extra moves, there probably will be a better spot than Athanasiou’s. I’m fine with using him though if you need a guy and are moves strapped

  3. ashtray says:
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    Thoughts on Buchnevich? Relevant in 12ers?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @ashtray: he’s definitely worth streaming in most matchups but I don’t think there’s enough there right now to hold him

  4. Shitwolf says:
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    Hey viz thanks for the help! Im going to swap kuzy for bish…. I’m content rolling duby and craw cuz honestly I don’t have faith in bishop! Trading in this league is too hard so I look at it like this if someone offered me kuz for bish I would probably take it! Plus I flipped a coin and it said to do it so fate is on my side! Haha have a good day :). (On a side note I make a lot of life decisions based on coin flips… it’s why I don’t currently have a middle name! (Longer story)) peace

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Shitwolf: Sorry for the late response buddy… yeah that makes a lot of sense, I would have pulled the trigger on that trade too. A coin flip is good! Sometimes you flip the coin and you get the feeling you know what you want so you decide that way. Or you just leave it to fate! My dad and uncle don’t have middle names either so join the club!

  5. I have Pekka Rinne and I would love to get aboard the Saros train whenever he steps in, but Nashville is so dang secretive about who is starting, by the time I find out it’s too late to stream him in. What’s up with that? Do both goalies come off the ice at the same time during the morning skate? Why don’t all the teams disguise who will be the starter each night?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @madden_curser: Yeah, I don’t know what Laviolette’s deal is. They either have optional skates and one goalie isn’t there so you can’t tell who is starting or they just come off at the same time as you said. Teams usually don’t bother because it’s not that big of a deal. Teams have everyone scouted already so while it could be marginally beneficial, it’s so marginal that it doesn’t make enough of a difference to bother keeping it secret.

  6. Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:
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    reimer or raanta ROS? goalie min and saves are categories (h2h league). max 3 goalies by rule and i have dubnyk/rask/raanta now. reimer dropped recently.

        • Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:
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          @Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey: in that league the team is BOS based and has simmonds, so i got all of this today:
          7 goals, 6 assists, 6 STP. it appears nobody gave a shit about defense as i got few hits/blocks from these players (except pasternak with 2 blocks)

          • Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:
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            @Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey: those aren’t total stats, just stats from the PHI @ BOS game.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey: Sorry for the late response… man that’s one hell of a game from your guys. I’d take Reimer, I think he gets more games than Raanta and that’s all I’m really looking for with saves being a category.

      • Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey says:
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        @Viz: save AND minutes, so even better.

  7. Hey Viz, any chance you are considering posting mid-season ROS rankings? Would love to see that. Also, you do a great job, but I was wondering if we will see more Assume the Position posts from Matt? I haven’t seen any in quite awhile. Keep up the great work. Thanks.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @madden_curser: I could possibly do it over the All-Star break, I’m just not sure how useful it is to everybody to put in the time to do it. I’ll post the questions in my notes for tomorrow and if enough people want me to, I can. Matt has been swamped at his real job but he’s hoping to get back to writing regularly again in the next week or two. Thanks! I appreciate it.

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