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Hey, everyone.

Your extended-play streamer column is here. I hope your fantasy weeks went well, and that you maximized games played and put more skaters on the ice than your opponent. I’m a big believer in accountability, and will be following up on the data I am collecting, and how the previous weeks have panned out. Because I write these over the weekend, matchups are still occurring, so I will use data from the previous completed week, pulled from my most competitive league as well as the two RCL’s.

During the week of 11/27, we had 17 matchups across three leagues. The managers who put more players on the ice than their opponent went 14-1-2, or 14 wins, 1 loss, 2 ties. One of those ties was me, at +10 (54 to 44) skaters, the other was also in my league at +4 (45 to 41). In one of the most impressive managerial feats I’ve seen, Team Euro in RCL 1 had 62 skaters on ice (I average around 52 with a max of 77 per week). The largest GP difference was I Am Score from RCL 2, who played a whopping +23 skaters (61 to 38), the greatest difference out of my 448 data points.

What I’m going to keep from column to column is this paragraph: out of 448 data points, managers who have played ten or more skaters than their opponents are 46-5-5. 46 wins, 5 losses, 5 ties. Even 5 more players on-ice than your opponent moves your meter considerably closer to the Wins column. Yes, some teams might have better players, or might put up more points (G+A), but nothing correlates more accurately to a Win than the difference of games played between teams. Points, goalie starts, you name it… the bottom line is, you want to put more skaters on the ice per week than your opponent, and wins will follow.

A side note is that micro-managing your lineup this way means fewer counting stats left on the bench. An opponent I played recently had Dylan Larkin sitting when he got a SHP, which is a total waste you cannot get back. When I play, I rarely, if ever, have a player on the bench accumulating stats.

So, in order to give Razzball readers a potential plus-8 or plus-12 skaters in a week, here is my weekly column indicating what teams you should grab free agents from, and some players who might be available in your leagues.

Week of 12/11

Teams to target:

Vancouver: 4 games, M/W/F/Su, all short-slate (!!)

Wow, Vancouver has the holy grail of schedules this week. Four games, all on off-days, meaning if you have the space, you could load up and pull away in GP early, and even have some insurance on the final Sunday (when only four games are being played). I know you might be laughed at in your league, but the players to target might be Henrik Sedin and Daniel Sedin, both of whom are above-average in their Corsi Against numbers. Another would be Derrick Pouliot, who has similar metrics. To expand the pool of options, Jake Virtanen has some utility as he’s about a goal behind where he’s expected to be, but no other Canucks are deeper in the expected goals hole than Michael Del Zotto or Sam Gagner. I also really like Alex Edler as a sneaky pick, lots of SOG, tons of TOI, plenty of hits and about a goal behind where he’s expected to be.

I mentioned a lot of players as starting points, but I encourage you to take a few minutes and use your own methods to select the final few streamers. Maybe you really like HITs or something. I’m rolling the dice with Del Zotto and Edler.

Dallas, New York Rangers: 4 games, Monday (6 games), Wednesday (4 games), Friday (5 games)

Dallas and New York also have an excellent extended streaming schedule. I would say it’s almost better than VAN because of added flexibility over the weekend: you could drop them Saturday morning for a goalie or for spot-starters on either Saturday or Sunday. Players to target from DAL might be Radek Faksa, who has terrific SOG and Corsi numbers despite being underused. Gemel Smith is an under-the-radar play, as he is quite productive (just lacks in TOI). Finally for DAL, Esa Lindell looks solid across the board, and should contribute in multiple categories. For NYR, Jimmy Vesey jumps off the page as a category contributor who is behind on expected goals. Rick Nash is a flexible play who is basically the league average in metrics but has room to improve. Lastly, you could take a flyer on Michael Grabner or Brady Skjei, if they are available. Both shoot a ton and contribute in hits.

Arizona, Montreal, San Jose: 2 games

If you have a mid-level player on any of these three that you can stomach dropping, you might want to free up the slot for some more starts. If that player were to be snatched up, they won’t be a threat this week anyway, depending on how long your waiver wire takes before claims go through… they might only play a single game.

That’s it for now. I’ll be watching this thread all week, so if you have questions that you want an arbiter for, I will chime in (and will work to give you the best information I have). I am sure Viz and Reid will also pop in every so often.

Good luck this week!!

Note From Viz: Just letting you guys know that I will have a massive set of daily notes go up on Tuesday morning.  Feel free to ask any questions here and I’ll answer them and I’m sure LDOM will help as well.

  1. Hey Viz. question regarding a trade in yahoo standard roto league

    Cats – G. A. PPP. +/-. PIM. SOG.

    Ovie and hellebuck for his Dubnyk and another forward ( hornquist , perry , Turris. Pavelski. Pacs. )

    Is that a trade worth making? Will dubbie get it together?

    • Lackeydrinksonme

      Lackeydrinksonme says:
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      @Derrick Yu:

      Viz is pretty high on Dubnyk, but I like where WPG is going over the course of the season and would hold onto Hellebuyck. That being said, Hellboy’s metrics are looking good so far, and we’re nearly halfway into the season. I’d say you know what you’re getting from both by now. Also, Ovie is going to break games open, his shot rate is absolutely elite and he cant contribute across the board. I vote to keep Ovi and Hellboy.

      • Lackeydrinksonme

        Lackeydrinksonme says:
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        @jump on it:

        Keller’s stats are so-so. He’s above where he’s expected to be in goals scored, but his possession metrics aren’t great and he’s on a struggling Coyotes team that can’t support him. The problem is that you league is pretty large, so you’re going to have to probably reach deep to get a similar return.In addition, ARI has two games this week… the value you’re going to get over the next seven days is limited even for SOG and other counting stats, and only three games next week. If you see something else available, or can make a trade, I might cut bait. Trade him to the guy you’re facing next week.

      • Lackeydrinksonme

        Lackeydrinksonme says:
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        @jump on it:

        Crap… see my response to you on the prior question.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Derrick Yu: I’m definitely holding, as much as I like Dubnyk, the potential upgrade to him from Hellboy doesn’t come close to the hit you take losing Ovechkin.

  2. jump on it says:
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    Hey team – im in a 14 team H2H non keeper with hits/blocks: is Clayton Keller a hold? He is struggling massively and is taking up space on my team.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @jump on it: I think you can drop him, he really gets hurt by hits and blocks being included and obviously no keeper factor changes things.

  3. Goalie stream. Would start Darling @ ANA (Gibson)? There is also both Reimer or Howard at DET available. I don’t like Halak vs. WAS (Holtby) or Lehtonen @ NYR (Lundquist), but those are also options, or pass on all of those… Thanks!

    • Lackeydrinksonme

      Lackeydrinksonme says:
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      @madden_curser:

      How did last week turn out?

      Darling at ANA is a solid stream, and you’ll get early results to see how the rest of the week should be played for goalies. CAR is currently the favorite to win, but maybe check the Vegas odds in mid-afternoon to see if anything has changed.

      • @Lackeydrinksonme: Ryan Miller & Peter Budaj were awesome streamers. Saturday I F’d up tho. I have Martin Jones, so I picked up Dell for the back-to-back. Unfortunately it was after the 1st Saturday game started, so he went onto Sunday’s roster, then Dell started Saturday & Jones Sunday, so I missed out on Dell’s SO. I had the right plan, just not the right timing. Ha ha.

      • @Lackeydrinksonme: Now I’m seeing Tristan Jarry is playing at home against Varlamov, and not Murray. Jarry or Darling today? Thanks Lackeydrinksonme!

        • Lackeydrinksonme

          Lackeydrinksonme says:
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          @madden_curser:

          I saw Budaj’s game against Colorado, nice snag. Yeah, I have alarms set on my phone for the weekend games, because that’s when I burn my remaining moves.

          I like Darling tonight, but if you feel like playing with fire you should go with Jarry. Pittsburgh is a heavy favorite to win (-220), and watching COL play you get the sense that they’re opportunistic rather than a steady roll of offense. That being said the scoring line is 6-over, so it might end up being a punchout, whereas CAR/ANA is 5.5-under.

          Take Jarry for the early week start, watch the game and cross your fingers.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @madden_curser: you looking for a win or better stats? The Islanders are favorites to beat the Caps tonight so Halak gives the marginally better chance to win but Darling is probably your best bet for stats. He’s about even money against Anaheim with a lower goal expectancy.

      • @Viz: Thanks! 3 good options. It sounds like the safe play is Darling tho.

        • Viz

          Viz says:
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          @madden_curser: No problem, definitely better options than a normal Monday. Jarry is a massive favorite to get the win so that might actually be safer, but the over under in that game is 6 and I wouldn’t be shocked to see a 5-3 type of game or even higher scoring. I’d eliminate Halak at this point since the reasons we liked him are negated by Jarry having a better chance to get the win, so I’d go him or Darling.

  4. W 5, L -5, GA -2, SV 0.5, SO 6. What are your thoughts on streaming Halak vs. Ben Bishop and the Stars? Halak allowed one goal on 32 shots in the Islanders win over the Washington Capitals on Monday. In his last 6 starts and one relief appearance, Halak has posted a 2.30 GAA and .929 SV%, but he allowed 5 goals on 29 shots in a 5-0 loss in Dallas in the first meeting. Thanks Lackey!

    • Lackeydrinksonme

      Lackeydrinksonme says:
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      @madden_curser:

      Let’s see here… Islanders are favorites but not by much. 9-1-2 at home… Normally I’d be looking at this for my own team, but I’m at my desk shaking my head on this one. I think it’s too much of a risk to put a slightly-better-than-average Halak in front of Benn and Seguin. That being said, Lehtonen is in goal for Dallas, so you might get a 4-3 or 4-2 win… Maybe Viz can chime in, but this feels too risky for me.

      You’re in a points league, so you’re just looking to maximize goalie points? I can take a look ahead in the week if you’d like- if Halak is your pick up for tonight and also thinking about Saturday (LAK), I’d avoid him even more.

      • @Lackeydrinksonme: Thanks. I do see the SJ Sharks have a back-to-back Thursday @ CGY & Friday @ VAN, so Dell will likely pick-up on one of those. Khudobin gets a start tomorrow, but they are hosting the Capitals & Holtby is projected to start. I am half way considering grabbing & holding Halak, but it is lucrative to stream goalies vs. players. 2 goalies max. We have 5 moves per week, but usually my other 2 are both playing at the same time a couple times each week (Martin Jones & Vasilevskiy). Also, there are a few other teams streaming goalies as well. You really have to watch sites like Left Wing Lock, Goalie Post & Daily Faceoff and get the jump on everyone else. I appreciate all the great input. Drinks are on me this time!

        • Lackeydrinksonme

          Lackeydrinksonme says:
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          @madden_curser:

          You’re clearly a manager after my own heart! Dell at either of those sounds like a great option. Good luck with Halak.

          This sounds like my fantasy baseball league, where we have 14 people and 10 of them are active.. you’re adding and dropping pitchers on Wednesday for starts the next week, hoping for any positive points. I’m going to try and throw some decent streaming opportunities on my thread next week, so hopefully that helps you get a jump, too.

      • @Lackeydrinksonme: I see yesterday Viz stated, “NEW YORK ISLANDERS: Holds: Tavares, Lee, Bailey, Barzal, Eberle, Leddy, Halak. Jaroslav Halak is still wildly available but I don’t understand why. He’s must own in all formats right now.” Then today in the comments he stated, “Halak seems to have a solid grasp on being the #1 right now. Greiss has been awful this year when he’s played too (although the wins have randomly been good).” Reading those have me considering holding with Halak as my 3rd goalie and streaming skaters instead. Any thoughts on that?

        • Lackeydrinksonme

          Lackeydrinksonme says:
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          @madden_curser:

          I defer to Viz on a lot, so take my observations with a grain of salt.

          From what I’m seeing Halak is a slightly-above-average goalie on a dynamic and (some might say) overperforming Islanders team. Having him on your roster as someone reliable makes sense, and it’s not like his season has been awful but he CAN be a risky start. If points are the way to go, though, I would hold onto a goalie like him (or Darling) just to make sure you’re getting reliable starts.

          If weekly matchups really do come down to goalie points, then odds are good that goalie starts correlates to total points from those positions. I know in ESPN you can explore this somewhat using Active Stats. If that’s the case, then good or bad you just want to have at least three reliable performers and ramp starts, I’m guessing 7-9 a week. We could take that to the extreme and have you sell high on a brand name or overperformer for another reliable/high tier goalie- having four that you can essentially set and forget except for those heavily-dogged starts sounds like a good game plan, and we can hit that 7-9 or higher threshold and begin maybe using moves to fill in skaters on off-days.

          This starts by knowing how definitively we can say reasonable goalie starts = points. Careful when you ask for my thoughts!! hahaha, I hope this helps.

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