I don't know how many people have watched Eastbound and Down, but every time there's a game with huge implications, I just want to yell " a f***ing showdown!" Monday had Kings vs. Flames, a crucial battle, and the Flames had their door blown off. The Kings went up 4-0 in the first, and ended up smoking the Flames 8-2. Despite the blowout, there wasn't a lot of headliners for the Kings, but the one was Adrian Kempe. Kempe had two goals and an assist to bring him up to 34 goals and 21 assists, ready to set a career high in both. Their schedule isn't ideal, but Kempe has played himself into a level where he's worth holding regardless. Let's take a look at the last two nights:
2022-23 Fantasy Hockey
As we rapidly approach the end of the season, we've reached the point where your leagues are about to be decided. In roto leagues, it's very straightforward to finish the season. You need to max out your starts and be sure to target the categories that you can move up in the standings. In head to head leagues, everything your team achieved over the first five months gets thrown out the window once the playoff starts. Today, I'm going to highlight some key things that you need to do in order to maximize your chances of winning. Let's get to it!
We found a new level of ridiculousness on Thursday night. The Canadiens were in Florida and they managed to tie the record for the most goals in a first period in modern NHL history, and they did it in barely over 13 minutes! Both Montreal goalies allowed 3+ goals in the first 13 minutes, and Sergei Bobrovsky allowed goals on the first three shots he faced. My god. The Panthers ended up winning 9-5 to keep pace in the Eastern playoff race. The only player who made more than two points was Matthew Tkachuk, who had a goal and three assists to keep up his torrid pace. Thanks Aleksander Barkov for not getting three points when I pick him in the three point challenge! Anyways, Florida is battling hard for a Wild Card spot, so expect their studs to get all of the minutes they can handle. For playing all games against Eastern teams the rest of the way, Florida's schedule is fairly soft, so expect it to come down to the wire. Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
This year couldn't be going any worse for the Columbus Blue Jackets. A horrible record, terrible injuries to key players, and dreadful goaltending have sunk them from the beginning. Now that they're in the Bedard race, their fans probably aren't even happy that they won on Tuesday night. Their prize free agent signing, Johnny Gaudreau, dominated the game with two goals and three assists, plus six shots on goal. That brings him up to 62 points in 64 games, a far cry from last season, but not a complete disaster. The question isn't about what to expect from Gaudreau for the rest of this season, but going forward. He turns 30 in the summer, but I'm not expecting drop off in the short term. Can he approach 100 points again? I have my doubts, but if Columbus is lucky enough to get Bedard, it can't be ruled out. Bedard would be the perfect compliment, and Fantilli wouldn't be a bad consolation prize. I was lower on Gaudreau than consensus so I don't have any of him this year, but there's always a chance that with his talent, he makes a huge difference over the last month. Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
An annual tradition in these parts, it's time for the Playoff Manifesto! This is targeted towards head to head leagues for your fantasy playoffs, but streaming wise, it still holds value for those in roto leagues. For each team, I am going to list how many games they have in each of the last five weeks in parentheses. Obviously if your playoffs don't start until next week, you can ignore the first number, and if your finals cover the last two weeks because the last week is a shorter week, combine the two. I will list all of their games on light days below this, and then I will have a list of all light games at the bottom. I will consider any day on the schedule that has four or less games to be a light day. Those days are the best for streaming so give them extra focus for your planning. Let's get to it!
Apologies to all of you DFS faithful for the absence last week! Mrs. MarmosDad had an unfortunate mishap at work and ended up at the hospital, so your fearless “penner of puckmovers” ended up much busier than expected. But, fret not! I’m back again today to get us all set up to cash in some Classic NHL lineups on a much fuller main slate than we’ve had for a few weeks. (And if you're worried, I'm glad to report that the Mrs. still has 9 1/2 fingers in tact). With a shout out to the Beastie Boys and their best album (although this is like picking the best chocolate bar, they're all pretty awesome), Check Your Head, we’re going with Vitek Vanecek, G (DK: $8,400) on the road as our lede today. Vanecek heads to Montreal with the Devils for this one and brings a 27-7-3 record with him. The 2.55 GAA and .907 SV% are pretty impressive on the surface, but some might be quick to point out that Vanecek is just 4-2 in his last 6 games, with one of those losses at home against these same Habs. He’s put up a 3.67 GAA over that last half a dozen, but with the Devils reinforcements at the deadline and the Habs mired in a 5 game losing skid, I think it’s a safe bet to play him on the road tonight.
Even with Columbus up 4-0 halfway through the game, it never felt remotely close to over. In the span of the first four minutes of the third period, the Penguins turned a 4-1 deficit into a 4-4 battle. A careless overtime penalty set the stage for Sidney Crosby to score the overtime game winner to complete the comeback. Crosby had a goal and two assists with four shots in the win, setting up a game on Thursday with the Islanders for the first wild card spot. While he's not at his peak anymore, Crosby still has a chance for 100 points again. You don't need me to tell you how good Crosby is, but where he'll rank going into next season is an interesting debate. My guess is that it's somewhere around 20th overall, a clear second rounder in drafts, but perhaps it's a few spots above that. Even at 36, he's given us no reason to expect him to slow down. Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
The trade deadline has come and gone with teams making their final moves, either to set up their playoff push, or to sell for the future. I covered all of the trades on this very site over the last week, so if you want to get my previous analysis, go back and take a look. Today, I'm going to take a look at early returns on all of the trades. What role are these players getting, how are they doing, etc. Let's get to it!
It's one of my favorite posts of the year! Sure, a lot of trades have been done in advance of the deadline, but there's sure to be more action today. Starting around noon eastern, I'll be updating this post with instant analysis on every trade that takes place. All of the moves from Wednesday and Thursday are below as well, with all previous moves in other posts.
Surprisingly, we're having the most action ahead of the trade deadline that I can ever remember. There were a lot of trades over thee last two days that I'll be sure to cover below, but I have to start off with a four goal game. Anze Kopitar scored four goals in the 6-5 OT win over the Jets. I'm shocked that this was actually Kopitar's second four goal game of his career. Kopitar has a good chance for 30 goals now for the first time in six years. Kopitar has played his way into being a hold in all formats as he's closing in on a point per game. With the Kings in the thick of a playoff race, he should continue to get 20+ minutes a night. Kopitar has shown very few signs of slowing down in his age 35 season. He's one of the best players of his generation and doesn't get all of the credit that he deserves. Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
With so many major trades happening over the weekend, I feel like the only choice was to write about them tonight. I'll have some quick hits about what happened on the ice over the weekend at the end, but this post is going to be focused on trades. The #1 player on the market, Timo Meier, was traded to the Devils on Sunday night, uniting him with his Swiss teammates Hischier and Siegenthaler. In totality, the trade looks like this: New Jersey Devils acquire forwards Timo Meier and Timur Ibragimov, defensemen Scott Harrington and Santeri Hatakka, goalie Zachary Emond, and a 5th-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for forwards Fabian Zetterlund and Andreas Johnsson, defensemen Shakir Mukhamadullin and Nikita Okhotiuk, and a conditional 1st-round pick in the 2023 NHL Draft, a conditional 2nd-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft, and a 7th-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft.
Ah…the Saturday before the trade deadline! Next week we’ll be able to build a roster of new faces in new places, but for tonight let’s steer clear of those players rumored to be on the trade block. There’s nothing worse than having a guy that you picked for your DFS lineup ending up as a healthy scratch because he’s being discussed in a potential move. With all of that said, I think it’s safe to say that our goalie pick for today is firmly entrenched as a player who will be unavailable on the trade block. Linus Ullmark (DK: $8,300) has been written up a few times in this space, and for good reason. His video game-esque numbers keep getting better. He’s 29-4-1 and leads the league with a .937 SV%. Just for reference, Tim Thomas’s Vezina numbers in his Stanley Cup year (2010-2011) were 35-11-9 and .938 SV%.