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Like Patrice Bergeron, I’m back!  After a long flight back home, it’ll be difficult for me to return in the style he did.  Bergeron had a goal and three assists with six shots in his season debut, a 6-3 win over the Canucks.  There’s not much to be said about Bergeron; get him back in your lineup immediately.  Look for his linemates to take off as well.  Let’s take a look at what happened over the last two nights:

Nick Jensen – Three assists.  Don’t really see much here.

Dylan Larkin – Two assists with a shot.  Larkin is starting to look like the player that I expected last season.  a full breakout may be on the horizon.

William Nylander – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM.  The focus has been on Auston Matthews‘ (1+1) hot start but Nylander has been outstanding in all categories in the early going.

Jaden Schwartz – Four goals on eight shots over two games.  I was planning on leading with Schwartz before Bergeron’s monster game.  Schwartz has been a monster so far and I don’t think it’s a fluke.  Obviously he’s not going to score 100 points but Schwartz could be primed for a top 50 season.

Vladimir Tarasenko – Goal and two assists with ten shots.  The consistency that Tarasenko has is quite remarkable.

Adrian Kempe – Hat trick and an assist with five shots.  I’m hoping he gets a much bigger role with Jeff Carter going down for an extended period, but Kempe played only 12 minutes in this game despite Carter being hurt early.  I like him plenty in dynasties but I wouldn’t rush to get him in redrafts.

Michael Cammalleri – Two goals and two assists with three shots.  I had fairly high hopes for Cammy going into the year but unfortunately he isn’t playing with Kopitar.  I’ll need another solid game or two before I bank on a come back.

Jonathan Quick – 36 saves on 37 shots in the 5-1 win over the Canadiens.  I’ve long been known as a Quick hater but this start might not be a flash in the pan.  He’s drastically changed his style sitting further back in the net which has helped tremendously in the early going.  It’s no guarantee that Quick avoids regression but I wouldn’t be rushing to sell high.

Michael Del Zotto – Two assists with six shots and four PIM playing over 26 minutes.  There’s plenty of value in deep leagues for the hits and blocks but Del Zotto is fringe in 12’ers at best.  Erik Gudbranson was ejected in the first period getting Del Zotto some extra minutes.

Brad Marchand – Goal and two assists with three shots and two PIM.  As mentioned in the intro, Marchand should get back to being a top 10 forward again with Bergeron back.

David Pastrnak – Goal and an assist with four shots.  Same deal as Marchand except top 15-20 forward.

Anders Bjork – Two goals and an assist with four shots and two PIM.  Sadly for Bruins fans, it’s just as notable that he collided with Tuukka Rask in practice Wednesday and Rask suffered a concussion.  I don’t see much here for Bjork in the short term outside of deeper leagues but Anton Khudobin becomes relevant until Rask is cleared.

Pekka Rinne – 28 save shutout in the 1-0 win over the Flyers.  After two sub-par starts to open the year, Rinne has put together four excellent starts in a row.  I like his chances to maintain his play since the Predators are playing tighter in the early going.

Michal Neuvirth – 23 saves on 24 shots getting the tough loss.  He’s been excellent in all three starts this season so I wouldn’t be surprised if Neuvirth earns more starts going forward.

Andrei Vasilevskiy – 43 save shutout in the 2-0 win over the Blue Jackets.  Oh baby, Vasilevskiy has been incredible so far.  My guess is going into next year, Vasilevskiy will be a top 5 goalie.

Mikhail Sergachev – Two goals on three shots.  I don’t love him in the short term since the minutes aren’t great but there’s ton of upside long term.  If you want to grab him hoping the minutes increase, I wouldn’t hate it.

Nikita Kucherov – Two assists with a shot.  He didn’t score a goal!?  BUM!

Nico Hischier – Two goals and an assist.  Congrats to the rookie on scoring his first two goals.  I’m holding tight in all leagues.

Taylor Hall – Four assists with three shots.  The shots have been there despite Hall having only one goal so I’m extremely encouraged by his start.

Kyle Palmieri – Goal and an assist with six shots.  He’s still under the radar but Palmieri is a solid hold in all formats.

John Moore – Goal and an assist with two shots.  Moore has played his way into consideration in hits and blocks leagues.

Erik Karlsson – Three assists with eight shots in his second game.  Nice to have Karlsson back on the ice showcasing his talents.  If you want to try and sell off Dion Phaneuf for someone else who is a hold on the blue line, I’d lean towards doing so.

Connor McDavid – Two assists with three shots.  He hasn’t scored a goal since the opener but the shot rate is pushing four per game in those five contests so look for McJesus to score a couple goals very soon.

Cam Talbot – 30 saves on 31 shots in the 2-1 OT win over the Blackhawks.  He’s been poor in the early going but I have no doubt that Talbot will turn it around.

Anton Forsberg – 40 saves on 42 shots getting a tough luck loss.  I’m genuinely shocked at how well Forsberg has played considering how poor he was in his brief stints in Columbus.

Jeff Skinner – Goal and an assist with four shots.  I had a few people ask about Skinner in the comments; he’ll get back to his usual scoring levels soon.  I’d much prefer to buy low than try to move him.

Scott Darling – 25 saves on 26 shots in the 2-1 win over the Flames.  He’s lost a couple tough games but Darling has been what I hoped in the other categories.

Alexander Kerfoot – Two goals and an assist with six shots.  His previous shot totals in seven games: 0,1,1,1,0,0,1.  I can’t use him in 12’ers until we see a few more games of Kerfoot shooting the puck.

Jamie Benn – Goal and two assists with two shots.  After a slow start, Benn is crushing it over the last week.  The shot rate is pushing four per game as well making Benn a stud in all categories so far, not that it’s a shock.

Tyler Seguin – Two goals on five shots.  The five shots dropped his shot rate to six per game.  Dude is killing it.

John Klingberg – Two assists with three shots.  As long as he keeps the shot rate over two per game, Klingberg should be a bottom end #1 fantasy defenseman with his gaudy point total.

Derek Stepan – Two goals and an assist with five shots.  The last four games have seen Stepan get back in form, especially in terms of shot rate where he’s registered at least five shots in three of the last four games.  The first line in Arizona is rolling despite the team struggling.

Clayton Keller – Two goals and an assist with five shots and two PIM.  Take that Stepan, two penalty minutes too!  This kid is going to be so damn good.

Friday Streamers

Chris Stewart (12.5%) – Stewart is getting time on the second line with Staal and on the second power play unit so I’ll use him in this spot against the Jets.

Kyle Connor (2.3%) – Connor should make his season debut tonight against the Wild.  I love his talent and all indications are that he’s playing on the first line.  Grab him now in case he takes off.

Thomas Vanek (12.4%) – While I like the Sabres tonight, they have been giving up a lot of goals.  Vanek has been solid for the Canucks in the early going so I’ll take the chance that he gets a point against his former squad.

That’s all for now guys.  As always, feel free to ask any questions or leave any comments below.  Now that I’m back home, I’ll be able to answer as quickly as I normally do.  I’ll be back on Monday recapping all of the weekend’s action.  Thanks for reading, take care!

  1. Brad says:
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    Hi Viz,

    Drop Provorov or Trouba for Morgan Reilly?

    Thanks,

    Brad

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Brad: I think I’d grab him for Provorov. Trouba is still safe across all categories so I’d hold him but there’s a chance Rielly is finally putting it together and Provorov isn’t there yet.

      • Shitwolf says:
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        @Viz:

        ha ha finally coming around on Reilly! how was your trip?

        I have been wanting to grab him also would you swap mccavoy green or prov? I kinda like prov for the blocks and hits too… thanks man

        • Viz

          Viz says:
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          @Shitwolf: I always believed in his potential, he was just used differently than expected by Babcock last year. The Leafs are playing so wide open that I’d rather gamble on him than Provorov.

          Trip was solid, no complaints. Hockey game / atmosphere was great despite the Sabres losing a thriller. Hmm, that’s tough. I would lean towards leaving him on the waiver wire just because the hits have dropped for years now but I would do it for Green if I was making the move. McAvoy has been better in hits and blocks than expected and Provorov is huge there.

          • Shitwolf says:
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            @Viz:

            Good call friend! I swapped couture for him cuz I don’t need the extra goals with how stacked my forwards feel.

            man it must be tough being a buffalo sports fan!

  2. lackeydrinksonme says:
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    Viz

    Instead of Forsberg, I grabbed Khudobin last night. Everything was going fine until the second period, but I grabbed a win and have the unofficial lead in SV and GAA. Hoping Holtby can pitch a shutout to apply some real pressure to my opponent.

    I’m trying to be more formulaic in my weekly planning:

    2 games:
    BOS
    NJ
    VAN
    VGS

    4 games:
    ANA
    CGY
    CAR
    LAK
    PIT

    I’ve grabbed a few Flames already, but I’m focusing also on CBJ and STL, for they play W/F. Very packed slates on T/TH/ST.

    Looking at your other comment, I’ll probably hold onto Larkin, and won’t move Skinner just yet.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @lackeydrinksonme: Glad that worked out for you. Smart move looking at the lighter schedule days. Do you mind if I steal that list from you this week? I’d like to start including something like that in my Monday morning post, potentially Friday in the future, so people can use it to plan ahead. I’ll give you a shoutout for saving me the time to look this week.

      Both of those guys look solid, especially Skinner lately even though last game was his first quality fantasy game. Glad you kept me posted on this goaltending situation since I’m intrigued on how it turns out.

      • lackeydrinksonme says:
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        @Viz:

        Yeah, of course. Like I said, I’m trying to be more formulaic about scheduling my team (broke out the spreadsheets) to maximize games played and TOI, but I’ll give you and other readers a heads-up throughout the week on what seems to be coming down the road- no shout-out necessary!!

        My verdict for next week is CGY, with STL and CBJ close behind, so definitely look into streamers/weekly streams.

        • Viz

          Viz says:
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          @lackeydrinksonme: Thanks man, I really appreciate that. Sounds like the right decision in terms of your decision for streamers.

  3. Amory Blaine says:
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    How do you feel about Stastny? He has been off to a hot start and we have Faceoff wins in my league

    • lackeydrinksonme says:
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      @Amory Blaine:

      I’d pick him up, he has a good schedule next week and seems to be playing hot. I grabbed him last night on a whim and wasn’t disappointed.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Amory Blaine: I would pick him up. There’s always the injury concern for Stastny but while he’s healthy, he’s getting 20 minutes a night in all situations getting a ton of faceoffs.

  4. Fleeced says:
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    Brassard or Hirchier ROS?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Fleeced: I’d rather gamble on Hischier.

  5. The Lost Vikings says:
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    Dude, what is happening with Robin Lehner? I need the inside scoop from a Buffalo fan who’s attuned to this.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @The Lost Vikings: I’m still not sweating it at all. The team was dreadful in front of him in the early going (he was great in the opener), then in the Kings game every goal he allowed was on the power play. From there, they played Johnson on the back to back, then he started again in Vegas with Lehner having the flu (still does). I’d be holding or looking to buy low if possible.

  6. mehdan says:
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    I currently have Anthony Mantha. Keller and Rantanen are on the wire and I dont know which one of the 3 i like best.

    My league replaced +/- with hits so them being on a bad team doesnt really hurt me.

    Also, would you have mcavoy or john moore?

    Thanks

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @mehdan: Rantanen is clearly behind the other two. I’d lean towards Mantha just because Keller appears to be a blank in hits.

      I’d definitely rather have McAvoy. Moore is more of a flash in the pan for the early going while McAvoy is the real deal.

  7. Jj says:
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    Hey viz,
    Still unsure of my dmen. I currently have
    OEL
    GOTHISBEHERE
    PROVOROV
    PARAYKO
    I like the upside here but it is a redraft league. PARAYKO currently has a hand injury but don’t really know the extent of it. A couple of new guys are available
    Dumba, Ellis, orlov, a.martinez
    Would you grab any of them over provorov, Parayko?
    Thanks

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Jj: I’m probably holding both of them; if I’m making a move it would be to grab Dumba but their offense is depleted at the moment.

  8. Mantis Toboggan MD says:
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    16 team keep 14. hits/blocks/faceoffs/goalie min/saves/special teams points/defensemen points added. need min 6 BOS players. wasn’t able to draft mcavoy (got turris instead, better any way for now)
    C (3) bergeron/krejci/turris/hanzal
    LW (3) marchand/hall/sobotka/bratt (RW)/simmonds (RW)
    RW (3) b.ritche/pasternak (LW)/reinhard/andrighetto
    D (5) chara/chabot/klingberg/krug/hamilton/severson/morrisey (streamer)
    IR spooner/sekera
    G (max 3, start 2) rask/dubnyk/subban

    drop any of the wingers for any of: yakupov (solid shots and hits)/vanek (points/shots only)/frk/debrusk/connor/wood/kempe/leipsic/hudon (good night shots and hits too)/bjugstad (RW with faceoffs, probably need him). bratt at least turned into what he probably should be lately.

    • Mantis Toboggan MD says:
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      @Mantis Toboggan MD: update, already dropped ritchie/bratt for bjugstad/yakupov. question would involve any other changes.

      • Mantis Toboggan MD says:
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        @Mantis Toboggan MD: 2, in case all these goalie injuries are more permanent (and/or fleury comes back first) how’d you rank: subban/kinkaid/big burrito (khudobin)/reimer? for starts mostly, but ratios behind that.

        • Viz

          Viz says:
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          @Mantis Toboggan MD: Would have got Bjugstad so like the moves. With Subban out a month, I’d grab Khudobin for now until Rask comes back.

          • Mantis Toboggan MD says:
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            @Viz: got lucky to reacquire reimer.

  9. Nightpandas says:
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    ViZ, 14 team roto keep 11….

    Would you trade my Rinne and Tarasenko for Crawford Couture and Pavelski?

    Have been struggling with goalie stats. Recently acquired Schneider to add to Rinne, Elliot, Budaj, Broissot…deep league start 4 of FW position, 6 d and 2 g

  10. Nightpandas says:
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    Of each fw position should say…

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Nightpandas: Man, that’s tough because I hate giving up the best player in a trade but that’s a serious payoff. Would you have to cut in order to make room for the extra guy? Are you in need for the depth, both in terms of this year and in terms of having 11 keepers?

  11. Quick Sycamore says:
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    Hey Viz! Hope Vegas was a blast.

    Anyway, what’s going on with Price? I know Montreal’s d hasn’t been good, but he’s looked below average. If you could convince someone to trade him for the right price, would you do it?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Quick Sycamore: Thanks! Definitely was a good time. Honestly, Montreal is a mess top to bottom. I had a couple whiffs in the early going but picking them to finish 7th in the division looks good so far. That said, if you could buy low, I would do it. He’s just too good of a goalie to be this bad and I suspect Montreal attempts to tighten up play given their early struggles. I don’t think the wins will be great but the ratios should approach previous levels.

      • Quick Sycamore says:
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        @Viz: Yeah pretty much my exact thoughts. Price owner in my league offered me(through text so not official) Price and Simmonds for Forsberg and Varlamov. It came out of nowhere too. I’m just waiting to see if he’ll actually go through with it or if he’ll come to his senses(he is 100% not the trolling type, just overreacts).

        • Quick Sycamore says:
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          @Quick Sycamore: Oh my league has hits which I am weak in, so Simmonds would help a lot there. And he is very weak in scoring so I guess he thinks Forsberg will help him there. I think he thinks it’s Forsberg for price and Simmonds for Varlamov which is still crazy but who knows

  12. 10 Team: 2C, 2LW, 2RW, 3D, 1UTIL, 5BENCH, 2 IR
    G 3, A 2, PIM 0.5, PPG 2, PPA 1, SOG 0.5, HIT 1, DEF 0.5

    Tyler Seguin, C
    Aleksander Barkov, C
    Nico Hischier, C
    Brad Marchand, LW
    Henrik Zetterberg, C, LW
    Anthony Mantha, RW, LW
    Sebastian Aho, RW, LW
    Mike Hoffman, LW, RW
    Dustin Brown, LW, RW
    Clayton Keller, C, RW
    Jaden Schwartz, LW
    Shea Weber, D
    Kris Letang, D
    Dougie Hamilton, D
    Martin Jones, G
    Andrei Vasilevskiy, G
    Scott Darling, G
    Mikael Granlund, Min C, RW  DTD IR
    Nino Niederreiter*, Min RW, LW  IR

    I have to activate Granlund, who is now DTD. Who do I drop? Was leaning Aho, who is averaging 2.8 pts. over 6 games.

    Also, some interesting recent available waiver guys; Cam Atkinson-RW, Ryan Suter-D, Logan Couture-C, Conor Sheary-LW, Brayden Point-C, Nathan MacKinnon,-C. Any suggestions for pick-ups & who to drop? Thanks Viz!

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @madden_curser: Hmm, that’s tough. I do like Aho a lot and it pains me to hold Brown but with hits added and how he’s playing, I guess it has to be Aho. I like a lot of guys on your waiver wire but I guess that’s going to happen in a 10 man with shallow rosters. I’d probably hold the rest for now, maybe drop Zetterberg for Atkinson, but the main thing that I wouldn’t be married to anyone on the bottom of your roster and would look to cycle these guys based on who is playing well.

  13. Nightpandas says:
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    Hey Viz,

    So I passed on the trade above but got another offer from the same team:

    My Tarasenko for his Kuz and Atkinson

    Here is my roster:

    C – Barkov, Backstrom, Konecty, Erickson Ek, Zacha
    Lw – OV, Benn, Konecny, Connor, Sobotka
    Rw – Tarasenko, Neal, Zuccarello, Fiala
    D – Karlsson, Klingberg, Montour, Mete, Fantenberg, Beaulieu
    G – Rinne, Elliot, Forsberg, Budaj, Schneider (IR)

    Start 4 of each fw, 6 d, 2 g , 14 team keep 11

    • Nightpandas says:
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      @Nightpandas: cats :

      G A Pts PPP SHP +\- PIM Shots
      W L GAA SHO SV% GS
      82 games per position
      20 more adds for season

      • Nightpandas says:
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        @Nightpandas: oops Killorn instead of Konecny at LW

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