For years, Patric Hornqvist has been an easy hold in fantasy, but last season brought some doubt if the 32 year old would get back to that level. Injuries have set back Honrqvist this season, but his first three games back have been strong, namely the last two. On Thursday, Hornqvist scored two goals on eight shots in the 3-2 loss to the Sharks. So why am I excited for Hornqvist? One is the shots. He’s pushing three per game which brings plenty of value. Two is the top power play time on a strong unit. Three, and this is the main one, is that Sidney Crosby should be returning within a week or so, and given the injuries Pittsburgh has suffered, it seems likely that Hornqvist ends up playing on his wing. This would do wonders for his value and give him the chance to be a solid hold again. Hornqvist is available in almost two-thirds of leagues right now which makes him an incredible speculation add in all formats. If he can stay healthy and plays with Crosby, we could get borderline top 100 value the rest of the way from Hornqvist. Let’s take a look at what else happened on Thursday night:
Jordan Binnington – 34 saves on 41 shots in 54:19 before getting pulled in the 7-3 loss to Colorado. This doesn’t change my opinion at all on Binnington, but I thought it was hilarious that Berube thought the point to pull Binnington was when the Blues went down 7-2 with 5:41 left in the game.
Robert Thomas – Two goals on four shots. That’s a four game point streak for Thomas who is starting to take a step forward. It would be nice to see the shot rate go up as that will increase his value. For now, he’s a middling streamer, but I still love him as a long term prospect.
Alex Pietrangelo – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM. He’s on pace to set career highs across the board. Crazy to think at this time last season, the Blues were just off the bottom of the standings and Pietrangelo was doing horribly. Oh, what a difference a year makes.
Nathan MacKinnon – Goal and three assists with six shots. Just another day at the rink for MacKinnon.
Samuel Girard – Four assists with three shots and two PIM. ” Girard generates a lot offensively but for whatever reason, it hasn’t translated into points. He’s an easy pass right now, but there’s a chance that eventually changes.” That was me yesterday! Safe to say it translated into points last night. I’m still not grabbing him, but keep an eye on Girard.
Nazem Kadri – Two goals on four shots. Life as a second line center again has been good to Kadri.
Cale Makar – Goal and an assist. Nice to see Makar have his first multi-point game since returning from injury.
Victor Olofsson – Left the game with what appeared to be an ankle injury and did not return. Fingers crossed that it’s not serious as he’s been a great late round find this season.
Elvis Merzlikins – 25 saves on 26 shots in the 2-1 OT win over the Bruins. Elvis is showing signs of life! His next four games are against the California teams (2 with the Sharks) and the team is playing well in front of him. If you’re desperate, I don’t mind gambling on him.
Andrei Vasilevskiy – 38 saves on 39 shots in the 2-1 win over the Canadiens. Extremely disappointing season from Vasilevskiy but we can’t rule out him being the best goalie in the second half. The upside is simply too high. At least the wins have remained solid.
MacKenzie Blackwood – 29 saves on 30 shots in the 2-1 win over the Isles. The Devils have won three in a row which seems like a miracle. His numbers haven’t been a complete disaster until other goalies on the bottom feeders. The problem is that their upcoming schedule is brutal. Blackwood is a desperation play for the time being.
Brent Burns – Goal and an assist with three shots. It’s been an extremely disappointing season for Burns across the board. Is he hopeless the rest of the way? No, and he’s an easy hold. Just don’t expect him to be a point per game player the rest of the way.
Evgenii Dadonov – Two goals and an assist with two PIM. Dadonov’s numbers are in line with where they usually are. Easy hold.
Keith Yandle – Two assists. If I could sell high on Yandle, I would. With Ekblad back, he’s down to play 15 minutes. Sure, the PPP should still be strong, but that’s about it.
Anton Stralman – Two assists with four shots. And there’s your annual Stralman update!
Tyler Ennis – Goal and an assist with three shots. Nice of Ennis to restore some value, but I’m still passing.
William Nylander – Two goals and an assist with three shots. That’s four straight multi-point games and 15 points in the last 8 games for Nylander. Hotter than a pistol!
Kasperi Kapanen – Goal and an assist. Minutes are down again so he’s back to a middling streamer.
Alexander Kerfoot – Two assists with a shot. Kerfoot is a bottom end streamer barring an injury to Matthews or Tavares.
Mark Scheifele – Goal and an assist with three shots. Kyle Connor also had a goal and an assist. These two just keep chugging along piling up the points.
Patrik Laine – Goal on thirteen shots. Thirteen shots! Laine has bounced back in a big way and has upside for better if his shooting percentage goes back to where it was his first two seasons.
Adam Fox – Three assists with a shot. Fox remains right on the fringe although now I’m slightly leaning towards hold.
Kappo Kakko – Goal and an assist with two PIM. The minutes are so low that he has to be a middling streamer now. Obviously that can change fairly quickly.
Johnny Gaudreau – Goal and an assist with three shots. Everything is trending in the wrong direction for Gaudreau and if I had to guess, I would say that it’s not going to get a lot better this season.
Dominik Kubalik – Three assists with two shots. Please just give him a chance in a bigger role!
Jonathan Toews – Goal and an assist. Toews is back to a boring hold since he hits all of the categories reasonably well.
Patrick Kane – Two goals on six shots. He’s a machine, plain and simple.
J.T. Miller – Goal and three assists with four shots. The trade looks better for Vancouver by the day. Miller has fit in seamlessly and continues to hover around a point per game.
Tanner Pearson – Goal and two assists with two shots. Pearson is having a major bounceback in Vancouver. He’s moved up to being an elite streamer.
Bo Horvat – Two goals and an assist with nine shots and two PIM, +4. Dr. Bo cutting up the Blackhawks! Basically the better version of Toews at this point.
Elias Pettersson – Goal and two assists. If he could get to the point where Pettersson takes 3+ shots a game, he would be incredible for fantasy. Obviously the goals and assists are great, but the secondary stats cap his ceiling.
Alex Edler – Two assists with four shots, three hits and blocks. I worry a little about his offense without being on PP1, but Edler should still remain a hold for the shots and PIM. He’s as good as it gets in hits and blocks.
Sean Couturier – Two goals and an assist with two PIM. Claude Giroux had a goal and an assist with eight shots while Jakub Voracek dished two assists. I’m buying this line (assuming they stay intact) for a big second half, mostly because of Couturier.
Paul Stastny – Two assists with two shots. Stastny has been dropped down to a bottom end streamer.
Max Pacioretty – Two goals on five shots. Patches is having the best season of his career this season. He’s been a godsend across the board.
Shea Theodore – Goal and an assist with eight shots. Theodore has been solid across the board. He’s worked his way well past the fringe and into D3 conversation.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back on Monday recapping the weekend’s action. As always, feel free to ask any questions, leave any comments, or give any suggestions below. Thanks for reading, take care, and go Bills!