Devan Dubnyk was a big focus of discussion for me in the preseason. I was the highest on him on FantasyPros by 20+ spots over everybody and 80 spots higher than ESPN’s staff rankings. That’s just insane for a player that I have ranked 41st to ESPN’s 122. Anyways, I argued that he was a no-brainer bottom end #1 goalie with the upside for more. Dubs showed what he can do on Tuesday night with a 27 save shutout on the road in Boston. It’s only been 5 starts for Dubnyk so far but after that game, he has a 2.01 GAA, .929 sv% and 3 wins. The Wild are playing excellent hockey in front of him right now and considering that he’s a workhorse, I wouldn’t be shocked if he pushes the top 5 for goaltending at the end of the season. I certainly hope so since I have him on literally every one of my teams! Here’s a look at what else happened on Monday and Tuesday night around the NHL:
Carey Price – 31 saves on 32 shots in the 3-1 win over the Flyers. Price is past the flu now and starting to look like he did pre-injury last season. I expect him to become the workhorse we know and be a top 5 goalie at the least.
Alex Radulov – Goal and two assists with two PIM. Starting to get rolling offensively and he’s been a huge plus in penalty minutes so far.
Shea Weber – Goal and an assist with 4 shots. Couldn’t hope for a better start for Weber. I’d try to sell high but he’s someone we will talk about for Thursday’s podcast.
Artturi Lehkonen – Assist with 5 SOG. Playing his way into the streamer category with his big shot totals and decent points.
Patrick Kane – Goal on four shots. Quietly above a point per game in the early going.
Corey Crawford – 29 saves on 31 shots in the 3-2 shootout loss to Calgary. More of what we expect from Crawford despite not getting the win.
Brian Elliott – 31 saves on 33 shots in the win on Monday, 23 saves on 24 shots in the win against the Blues today. Naturally Elliott has his two best games by a mile in a back to back with horrible matchups. Makes perfect sense <sarcasm>.
Sam Bennett – Two goals and an assist with seven shots and two penalty minutes in the back to back. Three game point streak now (5 points in those games) to become a hot schmotato. I believe!
Johnny Gaudreau – 1+1 with 8 shots total. Starting to see some progress but there is some concern here.
Claude Giroux – Two assists with six shots and two penalty minutes in two games. Giroux is already up to 9 assists and while the plus-minus has been bad, you have to like the assists.
Steve Mason – 30 saves on 32 shots in the Monday loss, then 8 saves in half a game Tuesday getting a win in relief. Michal Neuvirth gave up 3 goals on 17 shots against the Sabres before being pulled for the second straight game. Expect Mason to get the majority of the starts in the short term.
Mark Streit – Goal and two assists with five shots. His role seems to be in flux on a game to game basis so while I think it’s fine to own him in 12’ers, it’s going to be bottom end.
Brayden Schenn – Totaled 1+1 with 4 SOG and 2 PIM over two games. People were already asking me about Schenn after three pointless games. To quote Aaron Rodgers, relax.
Anders Nilsson – 38 saves on 41 shots. Played remarkable and deserved to win this game, Sabres were up 3-0 in the 3rd and two late, dumb penalties let the Flyers tie it up. Robin Lehner has the flu so there’s a good chance Nilsson starts against on Thursday against the Wild, which is a matchup I wouldn’t touch.
Matt Moulson – Two goals on four shots. He has 4 goals on the season now (all PP) and was bumped up to the first line. Moulson is an elite streamer at the moment.
Charlie Coyle – Goal on three shots. In seven games, Coyle is up to 3 goals, 2 assists, 18 PIM and 16 shots. Love the great start from one of my favorite breakouts.
Joel Eriksson Ek – Three assists with three shots. I talked about him on Monday; I love him long term but the role isn’t there right now. Perhaps that changes after this performance but he still only played 8:55 in this one. Eriksson Ek is a streamer at best in standard leagues until the minutes come up but grab him in any dynasties that he’s available in.
Ryan Suter – Stuffed the boxscore with a goal, assist, four shots and two PIM while being +3. That’s his third multi-point game in the last five; Suter seems to be enjoying himself in the Boudreau system.
Jason Zucker – Goal and two assists with a shot and two PIM. Decent streamer depending on his role but he also only play 10:49 in this one.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson – Two goals on four shots. Frustrating that OEL is still stuck on 0 assists but with 4 goals in 6 games, I don’t think his owners can complain.
Michael Stone – Two assists with two shots playing 24:29. I’d take the chance on him in 12’ers now that he’s back from injury. Alex Goligoski (assist, one SOG) is still getting big minutes with Stone back so he should be held as well.
Taylor Hall – Two goals and an assist with four shots. Hall is getting hotter than a pistol with 5 goals and an assist in his last four games. He’s over 4 shots per game at the moment as well. I know they’re 5-1 but Edmonton needed Adam Larsson over him?
Adam Henrique – Goal on four shots. It’s been a slow start to the season for Henrique but with points in the last two games, I’m giving him some more time.
Damon Severson – Two assists with two shots. Looks to be the Devils defenseman to own again for the time being.
Pavel Zacha – Two assists with a shot. Love that he’s playing with Hall right now. I think he’s only a streamer in standard leagues due to the lack of shots but in dynasties, my love for Zacha is growing by the game.
Travis Zajac – Two goals on four shots. Meh, Zajac is a streamer at best. The shots always end up being horrible.
Sidney Crosby – Goal on four shots in his return from his concussion. Get him back in your lineup immediately. There’s some expert analysis right there baby!
Nikita Kucherov – Goal and three assists with three shots. And now his relatively slow start gets erased with one big game. Love me some Kuch!
Vladislav Namestnikov – Goal and an assist with two shots being +4. Streamer success! I will keep going back to him as long as he’s on the top line. There’s a chance he works his way into a hold.
Steven Stamkos – Two goals and two assists with three shots. Okay Stammer, I see you out there. He absolutely owns Toronto in his career with close to 1.5 points per game.
Andrej Sustr – Two assists. And there’s your annual Andrej Sustr update!
Ben Bishop – 40 saves on 43 shots in the 7-3 for the Buccaneers over the Argonauts, or something! Obviously the 3 goals against isn’t great but you have to like the strong save percentage plus the win.
Frederik Andersen – 7 goals against, 17 saves. Holy shit, he is beyond a mess right now. Good thing the Leafs gave him a 5 year contract before he played a game there! I don’t see how you can play Andersen in fantasy against anybody at this point.
Auston Matthews – Goal and an assist with four shots. His partner in crime, William Nylander, also had 1+1 with 7 SOG. The crazy thing is they haven’t even been getting big minutes, they’re consistently in the 15-16 range. I did not see this coming and I still don’t know what to make of them. You obviously can’t trade for either of them and I don’t even know what I’d want to back to move them.
Andreas Athanasiou – Goal and an assist with two shots. He’s bounced everywhere from the first to fourth line so far this season so you can’t really count on him, even to stream.
Dylan Larkin – Two goals. Finally! Both goals were in the first period where he came out buzzing. I’d try to buy low if possible or hold tight if you have him.
Thomas Vanek – Goal on two shots. Hotter than hot schmotato! The minutes still aren’t great but it hasn’t stopped the Austrian.
Petr Mrazek – 29 saves on 31 shots in the 4-2 win over the Hurricanes. The Red Wings duo are both in fine form right now.
Kevin Shattenkirk – Goal on two shots. Solid start to the season for Shatt Deuces who mostly needs to just stay healthy for success.
Mark Scheifele – Goal on two shots assisted from Patrik Laine (three shots and two PIM also). They scored down 3-1 with 9 seconds left but it all counts the same in fantasy! Love me some Winnipeg Jets.
Patrick Eaves – Goal on six shots in his return from a brief time out due to injury. I’d still hold him if you have him or look to at least stream him in the next Dallas game.
Tyler Seguin – Goal on four shots. Feels like Seguin hasn’t done anything this year yet he’s sitting at a point per game with over three shots per game.
Devin Shore – Two assists. Really starting to work his way onto the streaming radar in the short term with the injuries to Dallas forwards.
Antti Niemi – 28 saves on 30 shots in the 3-2 win over the Jets. As expected, this is looking like a pretty even split in net for the Stars.
Craig Anderson – 22 save shutout against the Canucks. This is after giving up 4,4,3,4 goals the previous 4 games. This is what you get with Anderson and is what I don’t want anything to do with.
Ryan Dzingel – Two goals. Every time I take him in DFS, he blanks, otherwise he scores. He moved onto the second line during the game and while the minutes weren’t great, it was still an improvement. With 4 goals and 2 assists so far, he has to be considered a streamer at the least. The lack of shots (8 total) make me think he’s merely a hot schmotato instead of a real asset.
Jonathan Bernier – 10 saves on 11 shots through one period before leaving due to an upper body injury. Assume that John Gibson (24 saves on 25 shots in relief) will play every game in the short term.
Martin Jones – 19 saves on 20 shots in the 2-1 win over the Ducks. Surprisingly easy game for Jones who will surely start to turn things around.
Joe Pavelski – Goal and an assist with two shots. Excellent start for Little Joe which is no surprise from a first round fantasy pick.
Brandon Saad – Goal. He’s started slowly but I’m not worried.
Alexander Wennberg – Assist and a shot. I really like what I’m seeing in real life and while it won’t be elite in fantasy due to the shots, the assists could be elite and worth owning.
Tanner Pearson – Assist and a shot. Pick him up, hold him if you got him, etc. Dude keeps scoring.
Tyler Toffoli – Two assists with two shots. Only one goal so far but it’s nice to see Toffoli contribute elsewhere; that was my biggest concern going into the year.
Peter Budaj – 19 saves on 21 shots in the 3-2 win over CBus. The Kings have really limited the shots against Budaj and they’ll have to in order to win. Budaj could have a decent GAA but the sv% won’t be good.
Wednesday Streamers – With four games on the slate, the options are minimal but this is the time to stream! Here are my top three options:
Andre Burakovsky (18.9%) – He skated on the top line in practice on Monday and regardless, he’ll be in the top 6 against the Oilers. What’s not to like?
J.T. Miller (19.9%) – Miller has points in three of the last four games and the minutes are increasing. Boston’s goaltending is a mess right now due to the flu and injuries so look for the Rangers to keep up the strong offensive play.
Josh Bailey (8.4%) – The minutes are huge right now on the first line and Montreal will be on the second game of a back to back. Not an ideal matchup but opportunity is what you look for first and foremost on a short slate.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back with daily notes on Friday with another short slate on Wednesday night. As has been the recent schedule, the newest podcast will be out on Thursday morning so be on the lookout for that! As always, feel free to leave any questions or comments below. Take care!