The Arizona Coyotes put forward a great display of tanking at the end of last season pushing the Sabres for the worst record in the league. Unfortunately for them, they came up short and were jumped in the lottery. They were expected to be horrible again and the first two games do not really change their expectations. That said, you had to come away impressed by the Desert Dogs this weekend crushing the Kings 4-1 in LA on Friday and beating Pittsburgh 2-1 on Saturday. The quick start can largely be attributed to Mike Smith stopping 40 of 41 shots Friday and 27 of 28 on Saturday. He’s an incredibly streaky goalie so it’s not a terrible idea to pick him up and stream him while it lasts. He could also get shelled in their next game (Wednesday at Anaheim) so you have to decide for yourself if it’s worth the gamble (I’d lean yes). Let’s take a look at what else happened over the weekend:
Tobias Rieder – Scored a goal and assist on Friday on 2 shots, added a goal on 4 shots against the Pens on Saturday. Like many on the Coyotes roster, Rieder has a ton of offensive talent and it’s hard to judge how quickly all the young players will adapt to the NHL. He looked good down the stretch last season and is locked into the top 6 so at the least, he’s stream worthy and is definitely worth a spot in leagues with 14+ teams.
Max Domi – Goal, assist, 2 shots and 2 PIM in his debut against the Kings. The Coyotes seem intent on giving Domi every chance to succeed getting first line and first power play time immediately. He’s not the goon that his father was but he should regularly contribute in PIM. If you can stomach what could end up a poor plus-minus, Domi is worth owning.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson – Goal and 9 SOG between the 2 games this weekend. This is line what we’ve come to expect from OEL; an elite shot total, especially for a defenseman. Good to see.
Dylan Larkin – Goal and assist in his first game with 6 shots Friday, assist with 4 shots and 2 PIM in Carolina Saturday. Larkin is locked into the first line in Detroit; he’s a must add in all leagues.
Justin Abdelkader – Hat trick in the Wings opener, goal and assist with 4 PIM on Saturday. Must be nice to play with Henrik Zetterberg (1+4 this weekend). The Red Wings played two bad teams but their offense is completely legitimate. Look for them to settle in as the second best team in the Atlantic behind Tampa Bay as the season progresses.
Teemu Pulkkinen – Two goals on 3 shots and 6 PIM on Saturday night. There’s a lot of talent here but there are going to be ups and downs as evidenced by his completely empty boxscore on Friday. In deep leagues, I take the shot on the upside but I’m not adding him in 12’ers for now.
Jimmy Howard – 22 save shutout. Despite the shutout, the Red Wings stuck with their plan and started Petr Mrazek on Saturday (44 saves on 47 shots). I don’t expect either goalie to run away with the job barring injury but like I suggested in my rankings, owning both should pay off handsomely.
Andrew Ladd – Goal and assist with 4 shots. The top line for Winnipeg kept it rolling after their big win in Boston. Ladd is playing massive minutes (20:37 last game) so I expect him to stay close to a point per game pace.
Blake Wheeler – Goal and assist with 3 shots and 2 PIM. Same story as Ladd. He was one of my aggressive rankings compared to ADP and I feel great about it.
Mathieu Perreault – Two assists with 2 PIM. Always produces when healthy so he’s worth the add if available.
Patrick Kane – 3 goals and 2 assists on 12 shots in two games. His off ice issues have had no effect on Kane so far and I don’t expect that to change. If the person in your league is willing to trade him in fear of those issues, go and get Kane.
Artemi Panarin – Goal and 2 assists with 6 shots over the weekend. Called him a must-add after his first game; hopefully you made the move because it’s probably too late otherwise. He’s shown instant chemistry with Kane and has great offensive ability.
Johnny Boychuk – 1 assist and 9 shots on goal. It’s good to see the high shot volume from Boychuk; it’s his biggest strength and why he’s worth a spot in all leagues.
John Tavares – A goal and 14 PIM. Lost his cool while the Blackhawks were destroying his Isles in the second of their back to back. A nice bonus for his owners!
Oscar Lindberg – 3 goals in the Rangers weekend sweep of the Blue Jackets. A must-add at this point; Alain Vigneault is giving the third line for the Rangers heavy offensive zone starts putting them in a great position to succeed going forward.
J.T. Miller – A goal and assist playing with Lindberg. Worth the add in deep leagues but not worth owning in 12 man leagues yet. He’s the most likely player to move into the top 6 if somebody gets injured for the Rangers so he’s worth monitoring.
Mats Zuccarello – 2 goals with 6 shots and 2 PIM. The Norwegian Hobbit has shown no ill effects of his major head injury in the playoffs last season. The Rangers look great and his return is a major reason why.
Ryan Johansen – Goal and an assist with 9 shots. The top 6 is getting massive minutes for Columbus so I expect all of their forwards to start producing like Johansen has once they get easier matchups than the Blueshirts.
Brandon Saad – A goal with 6 shots at 2 PIM. A big game for these two should be in the cards soon. Today against Buffalo perhaps?
Chad Johnson – 27 saves on 31 shots. Despite the bad looking numbers, Ochocinco played very well and kept the Sabres in the game against a great Tampa team until the middle of the third period. The Sabres are going to ride him for a while with Robin Lehner being out for 6-10 weeks with a high ankle sprain so if you’re desperate for a goalie, Johnson is worth the add.
Ben Bishop – 24 saves on 25 shots in the win against Buffalo. Pretty much what you’d expect from Bishop at this point. Virtually every fantasy relevant forward for Tampa had a point in the game, again what you expect from the elite Tampa skaters at this point.
Brad Marchand – Out indefinitely with a concussion suffered against Montreal Saturday. Not good for anyone to have a concussion but especially a player of his size and style.
Matt Beleskey – Goal on his only shot and 2 PIM. It’s nice to see him on the score sheet but a bit concerning he only played 12:15. I’d rather use the last spot on my team to stream if you can instead of holding Beleskey.
Torey Krug – An assist on 3 shots and 2 PIM. The shot volume and the role is there for Krug to push towards the top 20 defensemen this year. He’s a great trade target since the breakout hasn’t happened yet.
Tuukka Rask – 34 saves on 37 shots in the loss. The defense is ugly in front of him right now but it will help to get Zdeno Chara back (expected to return today against Tampa).
Tomas Plekanec – 3 goals on 5 shots over the weekend. Locked into the first line center role so the production will last.
Max Pacioretty – 2 assists with 8 shots. He’s very good at hockey. Expert analysis right there!
Alex Galchenyuk – 3 assists with 2 shots and 2 PIM. It’d be nice to see Gally shoot more but it’s hard to complain about his overall production right now. The move to center, his natural position, is going very well.
Lars Eller – 2 goals on 6 shots. Finally getting a chance in Montreal’s top 6, Eller is someone who is available in most leagues who I’d pick up.
Erik Karlsson – 3 assists and 3 shots in 2 games. The low shot totals through 3 games isn’t concerning; he’s bound to have a 7+ shot game soon to balance it out with the insane minutes he’s playing (30:56 on Saturday). Sad he cut the flow though!
Mark Stone – Goal and assist with 6 shots and 6 PIM. Like I said in the first roundup, the first line in Ottawa can control games for stretches which they did in Toronto Saturday. They were a bit flat Sunday against Montreal but it was their third game in four nights and they’re getting big minutes.
Brad Boyes – Playing on the first line and had an assist, 2 shots and 4 PIM. In deep leagues, Boyes is worth the add. His plus-minus will surely be bad but he has a good chance for 20 goals playing with Nazem Kadri (6 shots) and James Van Riemsdyk (4 shots).
Dion Phaneuf – 2 assists with 5 shots and 2 PIM. He’s also +1 through 3 games which is a big win. His PIM and shot totals should both be elite for defenseman so he’s worth owning if you can stomach the potentially bad plus-minus. There’s a small chance his plus-minus stays okay because Mike Babcock will be smart about how he spreads the minutes for their defense.
Steve Mason – 4 saves on 8 shots in 6:46 before getting pulled. Yikes. You don’t want to overreact to one game but man, the Flyers defense is atrocious. I don’t own Mason anywhere and I really, really don’t want to.
Mark Streit – Scored the lone Flyers goal on 6 shots. Their only relevant defenseman!
Roberto Luongo – 38 saves on 39 shots. He’s going to face high volume shots on a regular basis but he regularly posts elite save percentage. The Panthers are loaded on young talent and the division is relatively weak so there’s a chance for Luongo to make a push back into the top 10 goalie conversation as the year progresses.
Jaromir Jagr – The 43 year old buried 2 goals on 3 shots starting the season right where last season ended, dominating with Jonathan Huberdeau (an assist with 3 shots) and Aleksander Barkov (2 assists and a shot). In other exciting news, Jagr said he is growing out the mullet again. What a boss. If only he didn’t go play in Russia for 4 years in his prime and forced to miss games for 3 lockouts, he’d probably have the most goals in NHL history.
Brandon Pirri – 2 assists on 1 shot. He had 2 assists last season in 49 games! He did have 22 goals in those games with a great shot total and is a big part of the Panthers power play so he’s worth the spot in 12’ers.
Vincent Trocheck – A goal and 3 assists in the blowout win. I’m not rushing to add him but he’s worth keeping an eye on. He had 22 points in 50 games last season with only 1 power play point so if he keeps a spot on the power play, he should push 50 points over a full season.
Michael Cammalleri – Scored a goal and added two assists in 2 games over the weekend. He’s the only Devil skater who I’d own at this moment outside of the deepest of leagues.
Alex Ovechkin – Goal and assist on 4 shots. Not much to see here, he’s still a top 2 fantasy option.
John Carlson – 2 assists, 3 shots, 2 PIM. As noted by my high preseason ranking, I’m big on Carlson this year and this is the encouraging start I wanted to see.
Justin Williams – 2 assists and 2 shots in his Capitals debut. I’m not rushing to add him but he’s worth watching over the next week to see who he plays with, especially when Nicklas Backstrom returns, which should be in a week or so.
Justin Faulk – Goal on 7 shots. I’m a big fan of Faulk’s game and he should top 50 points with elite shot totals. As long as his plus-minus isn’t horrible, he can end up a top 15-20 defensemen or better.
Eric Staal – No points but 2 PIM and 9 shots in an insane 24 minutes of ice time. It’s worth monitoring how much Staal plays the next few games because if he’s going to play over 20 minutes regularly, he’s going to push 300 shots and would be an excellent trade target.
Noah Hanifin – An assist and 4 shots. The rookie looked impressive and should grow into a bigger role as the season goes on. He’s a must own in dynasty leagues and while I wouldn’t add him in 12’ers yet, I would in anything bigger.
Pekka Rinne – 31 save shutout against Edmonton. Yeah, he’s pretty damn good.
Filip Forsberg – Scored once on 4 shots in 19 minutes. The minutes increase is a good sign for Forsberg going forward.
Vladimir Tarasenko – Goal and assist with 7 shots. He’s clicking with his linemates Alex Steen (1+1, 5 SOG, 2 PIM) and Paul Stastny (assist, 2 shots). Tarasenko has a legitimate chance to lead the league in goals this season. He’s that good.
Kevin Shattenkirk – Assist plus two shots and 2 PIM. He’s going to post an amazing power play points total this year.
Charlie Coyle – Two goals on three shots. He’s playing with a great offensive player in Thomas Vanek (1 assist, 1 shot, 4 PIM) so the points should be there for Coyle at even strength. The problem is that he isn’t getting power play time at this moment. If he starts to get power play time, he’s probably must own in 12 man leagues.
Zach Parise – Score a goal on 4 shots with 2 PIM off his hat trick performance on Thursday. Here’s to hoping he stays healthy; the way he’s playing right now with Mikael Granlund (1 assist and 2 shots in 20 minutes) and Jason Pominville (3 shots), he should have his best season in Minnesota.
Devan Dubnyk – 30 saves on 32 shots for the win. Bounced back from a poor performance in Colorado to lock down the win late in the third period. The Wild always play a strong defensive game so I have no doubts about Dubnyk going forward.
Cody Eakin – 2 goals on 4 shots. He’s playing on the Stars first line right now with Tyler Seguin (assist, 6 shots) and Jamie Benn (1 assist, 2 shots, 2 PIM) so he’s must own for the time being. If he keeps it up for a week or two, I’d be looking to sell high.
Antti Niemi – 22 saves on 28 shots. Gets a shutout against Pittsburgh, then gives up 6 to Colorado, 5 of which came in the second half of the game. That makes a lot of sense (no, not really).
Francois Beauchemin – 2 assists and 3 shots bringing his total to 5 assists in 2 games. I mentioned him in my Wednesday article as someone to keep an eye on and he’s getting the role I talked about. Big minutes and first power play time. Must add at this point in time.
Gabriel Landeskog – Two goals and two assists on 2 shots. He’s taken 3 shots this year and has 3 goals. 100% shooting percentage! Seems sustainable. Despite the early good fortune, I like Landeskog to set a new career high in goals (26) and push for a new career high in points (65).
Nathan MacKinnon – Part of the reason I am high on Landeskog is MacKinnon. He scored a goal and two assists with two shots. He looks amazing so far playing center instead of RW; the sophomore slump appears to be just that. I’m expecting career highs across the board from MacKinnon; approaching 80 points isn’t out of the question.
Alex Tanguay – Two assists being the third wheel with Landeskog and MacKinnon. His shot total will surely be poor but he should be a good source of assists if you need them.
Erik Johnson – A goal on 4 shots. I don’t expect a big bounceback if he stays healthy; he’s not going to be on the first power play unit barring an injury. That said, the Avs will need Johnson defensively so he’s certain to play big minutes. In 14’ers or deeper, he’s worth owning but I’m not rushing to get him in 12’ers or less.
Johnny Gaudreau – A goal and two assists with four shots. Johnny Hockey looked much better after a poor Calgary performance in game one. The first line for Calgary should produce at a top rate.
Dougie Hamilton – Goal and two shots in 26:38 played. Hamilton is on the first power play unit so I’m expecting a breakout; that’s why he made my top 20 defenseman rankings in the preseason.
Jonas Hiller – 28 saves on 30 shots in the win. I expect him to end up on the slightly better side of the platoon with Karri Ramo.
Phil Kessel – scored his first goal as a Penguin. It’s only a matter of time before the Penguins get going but it’s encouraging that Kessel scored despite a terrible game from Sidney Crosby (0’s across the board).
Fredrik Andersen – 42 saves on 44 shots. Unfortunately for him, he didn’t get any offensive support so he got the loss. Nonetheless, it was an encouraging performance.
Martin Jones – 27 save shutout. He’s off to a great start which is huge for a young goalie in his first season as a starter. The Sharks have looked great in both of their games against their California counterparts so perhaps Jones will be better than I originally expected.
Patrick Marleau – Scored both goals in the 2-0 win on 7 shots. Good to see the second line producing for the Sharks.
Joel Ward – assisted on both goals. Looks like he has a firm grip in his top 6 spot and second power play unit so worth an add in deeper leagues and worth monitoring in 12 man.
Streamers for Monday: I’m going to start listing 2-3 guys in each of my daily roundups who you can look to stream. These are players who should be available in the vast majority of leagues. I will note their ownership percentage on ESPN next to their name.
Brett Connolly (1% owned) – With Brad Marchand out with a concussion, Connolly is going to get first crack at replacing him on the first line. Add in the fact that he’s going against the team who drafted and subsequently traded him and there’s a revenge factor on top of being in a great spot next to Patrice Bergeron.
Zemgus Girgensons (4%) – Sabres coach Dan Blysma said he’s going to start the game today with Girgensons centering Tyler Ennis and Ryan O’Reilly on the first line. Scored at a 20 goal pace last season with horrible linemates; now he’s playing with two gifted players.
Chris Stewart (0.8%) – An incredibly frustrating player due to his inconsistency, Stewart is getting a chance in Anaheim right now to play on the first line with Ryan Getzlaf and on the first power play unit. That’s a great spot for a player to stream.
That’s a wrap on the weekend roundup. Hopefully you have Columbus Day off in the U.S. and can watch some hockey tomorrow! If not, you can always watch at work. Happy Thanksgiving to all of our Canadian friends as well. As always, feel free to leave any comments and questions below and I’ll respond to you as soon as possible. Take care Razzball Nation!