Going into Monday’s game, Braden Holtby was 14-0-1 with a 1.85 GAA and .940 sv% in his last 16 starts. Naturally, he found a way to even improve on those on Monday as he stopped all 31 shots he faced in the 2-0 win over the Sabres, including an incredible point blank stop on Evander Kane to maintain the shutout in the final minute. At this point, he’s running away with the Vezina Trophy and the only thing that will stop him from winning it is injury or himself. He’s the clear cut #1 fantasy goalie and will have a shot at finishing as the #1 player in the player rater based on RCL categories. Here’s what else I saw in last night’s games:
Alex Ovechkin – Goal on four shots, +3 Corsi. His expectations are so high that being on pace for 45 goals seems disappointing. I still expect him to get to 50.
John Carlson – Missed the game last night due to injury. He was able to take warmups so it’s clearly not serious; I expect him to play in the second game of the home and home against Buffalo Wednesday.
Mike Condon – 36 saves on 39 shots in the shootout win over the Lightning. The Canadiens were so disappointed with their recent goaltending that they traded for Ben Scrivens, who was getting lit up in the AHL. I do expect Scrivens to get some games in the near future so he’s an okay flier to take in deep leagues.
Alex Galchenyuk – Goal on three shots. The minutes were really low in this one (under 15 in an OT game) which is strange considering the recent run that he’s been on. It’s worth monitoring in the next couple games to see if this was a one time thing or a sign of things to come.
Tomas Plekanec – Goal on five shots with two PIM. It’s looking like last year was the anomaly as this season is in line with the previous seasons before this one.
Valtteri Filppula – Two assists. Not touching him outside of the deepest of leagues. His lack of shots hurt too much and he’s not playing on the top line anymore.
Nikita Kucherov – Goal on six shots. The hot streak has started and it should continue.
Henrik Lundqvist – 30 saves on 35 shots before getting pulled in the third. Yikes. I’d float some buy low offers to his owners in case they are panicking. He’s too talented for this to continue.
Rick Nash – Goal on nine shots. The goals on the season are down but now he’s over 3 shots per game, the PIM are solid and the assists are up. One decent goal streak and his season will look pretty, pretty good.
Filip Forsberg – Goal on two shots. He’s now on a five game point streak and is showing signs of the top 50 player he was last season.
Roman Josi – Two assists and six shots, +8 Corsi. Absolute stud. Instead of being fringe top 10 like going into this season, he’s going to be on the cusp on top 5 going into 2016-17.
Mike Ribeiro – Three assists. A very Mike Ribeiro game with three points but no shots. Still not a fan of owning him.
Devan Dubnyk -28 saves on 29 shots in the 3-1 win over the Red Wings. Hopefully his owners had him in the lineup as he wasn’t expected to start but Darcy Kuemper was ruled out about a half hour before game time. It was also unfortunate for his owners that had him in that he lost his shutout with less than two minutes left in the game. The numbers aren’t otherworldly like they were last season but he’s still been solid.
Mikko Koivu – Two goals on three shots. What a bounceback year he’s having. The shots are below average but for someone barely drafted in 12’ers, 31 points in 35 games is remarkable.
Zach Parise – Two assists with three shots. He’d be on pace for about a 35+35 season if he had stayed healthy.
Anze Kopitar – Four assists with three shots, +6 Corsi. The Kings absolutely dominated this game from start to finish with the newly formed top line doing most of the damage. As I said yesterday, if the Kings start using Kopitar in a more offensive role, look out.
Tyler Toffoli – Hat trick on seven shots. The move to the first line with Jeff Carter out injured also did Toffoli wonders. He’s now up to 17 goals on the season and should post career highs across the board.
Jonathan Quick – 27 save shutout. The wins are going to end up in the top 3 of the league because of how poor their division is. It’s embarrassing how poor the Pacific is compared to the rest of the league.
Nathan MacKinnon – Hat trick on four shots. He had been struggling to score for the past month so this was a long time coming. He’s still over three shots per game and just behind a point per game pace so his overall numbers look great despite the last few weeks.
Carl Soderberg – Goal and two assists, all power play, with three shots. The Avs switched up their power play units from what they’ve done the majority of the year and it paid dividends. Soderberg now has 25 points in 37 games so if you’re in need of assists and special teams points, he’s a pretty good option. He’s not going to kill you in shots either like most of the bottom end assist guys.
Brent Burns – Assist with four shots and two PIM. Typical Brent Burns night at this point.
Tomas Hertl – Goal on five shots with two PIM. He’s been dropped down to the fourth line and I don’t understand it. He was amazing his rookie year and then had a sophomore slump once his most common linemate (Burns) went back to defense and failed to adjust. He’s never been given a prolonged chance since in the top 6. With all of the talent the Sharks have, they usually have someone who isn’t good in their top 6 (right now, Dainius Zubrus). In 12’ers, I’m just letting Hertl go now.
Tuesday Streamers: It’s a big 10 game slate tonight so there shouldn’t be much streaming but here are my top 3 options anyways:
Andrew Shaw – He’s up on the first line and second power play unit right now and gets a great matchup against the Coyotes.
Tanner Pearson – It sucks that Carter is out but Pearson is still getting his usual allotment of minutes. Playing with Marian Gaborik isn’t bad on the second line isn’t bad either. A matchup with the Oilers is always a good one, even with the Kings on a back to back.
Reilly Smith – He’s been solid on the year and is the focal point on the Panthers second power play unit. I still expect the Canadiens goaltending to be poor meaning Smith should get some quality chances to get on the scoresheet.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back on Wednesday with a recap of tonight’s games. As always, feel free to ask any questions or post any comments below. Take care everyone!