Those of you that have been patient holding Evander Kane for almost four months were rewarded on Saturday night. Kane played his first game of the season with the Oilers and went right on McDavid’s wing. Kane scored in the first period and finished with three shots in the 7-2 win over the Canadiens. He’s still available in 50% of ESPN leagues and very close to that on other sites. Kane is a must own immediately, and if you use FAAB, you should bid a large amount of your budget. Yes, he could do something stupid and be banished, but the upside is too high for him to be on waivers. Let’s take a look at what else happened over the weekend:
Jake Guentzel -Two goals on three shots, both assisted by Sidney Crosby. The top line for Pitt is up there with the best in the league right now.
Mats Zuccarello – Goal and an assist with two shots. Zucc had to ruin his good friend’s Hank’s retirement night by bringing the Wild back. Zuccarello has been incredible sitting well over a point per game.
Kevin Fiala – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM. The assists are stronger for Fiala than usual, and the shooting percentage should improve. I’m still a big fan.
Jacob Trouba – Two assists with five shots. With Fox out, Trouba is going to be an absolute monster. He’s worth owning either way, but if he had this role all the time, he’d probably be a top 10-15 defenseman.
Nazem Kadri – Goal and two assists with three shots. He’s going to set a career high in points in the next couple weeks. Absolutely insane.
Gabriel Landeskog – Two goals and an assist. The Kog is crushing even in MacKinnon’s absence.
J.T. Compher – Gordie Howe hat trick. Middling streamer.
Mikko Rantanen – Two assists with a shot and two PIM. With MacKinnon out, Rantanen has been playing center which is a nice short term boost for everybody in faceoff leagues.
Cale Makar – Goal and an assist with two shots. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a defenseman be this much of a scoring threat.
Patrick Kane – Two goals and an assist with ten shots and two PIM. The goals are way down for Kane which is a bit disappointing. He’s still going to hover around a point per game, but expectations need to be kept in check.
Erik Gustafsson – Goal and an assist with five shots. Gustafsson played more than usual because they were losing by so much. There’s deep league value, but that’s it.
Dylan Strome – Two assists with a shot. Strome is on fire right now which makes him a top streamer, but I’m not looking to hold.
Brandon Hagel – Gordie Howe hat trick with five shots. Hagel is the third part of the line and been performing fairly well. He’s a middling streamer.
Vitek Vanecek – 29 save shutout in the 5-0 win over the Stars. The numbers are great. If that holds, the wins are bound to improve.
Nicklas Backstrom – Goal and two assists with two shots. It’s nice to see Backs around 2.5 shots per game in the early going. He’ll be right around a point per game so he’s a hold either way, but it would boost his value quite a bit to hold a respectable shot rate.
Evgeny Kuznetsov – Two assists. He’s slowed down a bit, but Kuz is still right around a point per game.
Connor McMichael – Goal and an assist. I’m a fan of McMichael’s long term outlook, but he’s a bottom end streamer at best right now.
Linus Ullmark – 30 saves on 31 shots in the 2-1 win over the Coyotes. I’m still holding Ullmark even with Rask in the mix.
David Pastrnak – Two assists with five shots. Even on the second line, Pasta has been as good as usual. If anything, it sparked his turn around.
Craig Anderson – 27 saves on 28 shots in the 3-1 win over the Coyotes. Anderson’s first game in almost three months went as well as possible. He’s still only a desperation play.
Alex Tuch – Goal and an assist with seven shots. Tuch has been fantastic so far sitting at a point per game and right around three shots per game. He’s a no brainer hold.
Peyton Krebs – Goal and an assist with three shots. Krebs’ playmaking and vision is truly elite. He’s a middling streamer right now with big minutes and has huge upside long term.
John Gibson – 44 saves on 45 shots in the 2-1 win over the Senators. Gibson’s save percentage is great and the GAA is back to a respectable level. He’s a top end #2.
Viktor Arvidsson – Two goals on nine shots. Arvidsson’s shot rate is elite which enough to hold him.
Sean Durzi – Two assists with four shots. I’m a fan of Durzi’s game from what I’ve seen so far. He’s not quite a hold in 12’ers, but he’s not far off, and there could be something pretty good here long term.
Cam Atkinson – Two goals and an assist with four shots. Atkinson has been outstanding in Philly despite the rest of the team around him being a dumpster fire.
Eric Comrie – 28 saves on 29 shots in the 4-1 win over the Blues. Comrie rarely plays, but he’s worth streaming in most matchups when he does.
Paul Stastny – Two goals on four shots and two PIM. Stastny is a solid to elite streamer, but the shot rate is bad enough that I’m not looking to hold him.
Kyle Connor – Goal and an assist with four shots. Absolute monster season from Connor who is at 4.5 shots per game and playing at a 48+40 pace. That’s a borderline first round pick.
Nick Bonino – Three assists with three shots. Nothing to really see here at this point of Bonino’s career.
Jonathan Dahlen – Two goals on six shots. Dahlen has had a decent rookie season and looks the part offensively, especially on the power play. He’s a middling streamer right now, but I wouldn’t be shocked if he’s a hold in a season or two.
Jonathan Huberdeau – Goal and two assists with five shots. Your league leader in points? Jonathan Huberdeau. What a season from Huberdeau.
Carter Verhaeghe – Two assists with a shot. He looks locked into Barkov’s wing and continues to put up plenty of points. He’s a solid hold again.
Sam Reinhart – Two assists with eight shots. Reinhart is down on the third line right now, but it’s thriving. Reinhart is still on the first power play unit and is piling up points. I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets to a point per game.
Gustav Forsling – Goal and an assist. Forsling is on the fringe depending on team needs.
Mason Marchment – Goal and an assist with three shots. Marchment has scored in three straight games and is now up to 17 points in 20 games. He’s a solid streamer but lack of PP time keeps him from elite status.
Michael Bunting – Hat trick on seven shots. Bunting has played with Matthews for almost the entire season and has been fairly good. He’s an elite streamer, but without top PP time, I wouldn’t be looking to hold him.
Dylan Larkin – Two goals and an assist with five shots. Larkin is blowing up with improved teammates. He’s going to get a huge contract this offseason or next.
Vladislav Namestnikov – Goal and an assist with two shots and two PIM. Names is on the first line right now which bumps him up to a middling streamer.
Moritz Seider – Two assists with a shot. Very good rookie season from Seider. You can see the long term upside of Seider becoming a 60+ point player regularly.
Antti Raanta – 24 saves on 25 shots in the 2-1 win over the Devils. It looked like Raanta was going to split or be 1B going into the season, but Andersen has ran away with the top job. When Raanta starts, he’s worth streaming in any matchup.
Zach Hyman – Two goals and an assist. The Oilers are actually going for balance right now with Hyman on the third line with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (G, A, 2 PIM). I’m remaining stubborn and holding Hyman and RNH is a definite hold.
Duncan Keith – Two assists with a shot. Keith has been a bit better lately, but he’s a deep league only guy.
Leon Draisaitl – Two goals on five shots. The goal race is going to be fascinating with Kreider trying to hold off Draisaitl and Ovechkin. Wouldn’t be surprised if Matthews or Connor get in the mix.
Warren Foegele – Two assists with three shots. He’s on Draisaitl’s line right now which makes Foegele a bottom end streamer by default. I can’t help but think Hyman and RNH eventually go into the top six and the Oilers load up.
Brett Howden – Goal and an assist, as did William Carrier. Revenge game from Howden! The fourth line did damage in this game, but don’t expect anything from either of these guys going forward.
Corey Perry – Goal and an assist with three shots. Perry is back in the bottom six which puts him as a bottom end streamer.
Jacob Markstrom – 15 save shutout in the 1-0 OT win over the Canucks. Easy shutout from Markstrom against his former team with Thatcher Demko stealing a point, saving 31 of 32 shots. Both of these guys are bottom end #1’s now.
Darcy Kuemper – 30 saves on 31 shots in the 4-1 win over the Sabres. Kuemper is starting to turn things around with six quality starts in a row. The wins are incredible as is, so Kuemper has a path to being a top 3 goalie for the rest of the season (as I ranked him in preseason) or a top #2 depending on where his save percentage is.
Valeri Nichushkin – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM. It was an empty netter, but it all counts the same for us. Big Val is right on the fringe.
Jared McCann – Goal and an assist with two shots. McCann was a preseason favorite of JKJ and yours truly and is playing at close to a 40 goal pace. Pretty damn good.
Mika Zibanejad – Goal and two assists with two shots and two PIM. That brings Zibanejad over a point per game. He’s one of the few guys that’s doing well at even strength on the team in terms of expected goals and possession.
Anze Kopitar – Two assists with four shots. The shots for Kopitar are the highest they’ve been in a decade. That’s enough to make Kopitar a no brainer hold.
Trevor Moore – Two goals on three shots. Moore has been great on the second line seemingly out of nowhere. It’s only enough to be a middling streamer, but it’s a big gain for the Kings.
Kris Letang – Two assists with a shot. Letang continues to hover right around a point per game despite only 5 goals in 41 games. Assists ain’t got no face!
Bryan Rust – Two goals on three shots. As mentioned above, the Pens top line is among the league’s best and Rust is a big part of it.
Jake Oettinger – 25 saves on 26 shots in the 6-1 win over the Bruins. The wins and GAA are solid despite a mediocre save percentage. Credit to Dallas defensively for that. I wouldn’t hold Oettinger, but he’s a streamer in most matchups.
Tyler Seguin – Two goals and an assist with three shots. Jamie Benn had a goal and an assist with two shots and two PIM, while Denis Gurianov dished two assists with three shots. It was a rare quality performance from this second line. Seguin is a solid streamer bordering on elite because of the power play time, while the other two are middling.
Patrik Laine – Two goals on five shots. Laine has been good when healthy this season. It’s not slam dunk, but I would hold.
Gustav Nyquist – Two assists. Nyquist has reached middling streamer status despite the dreadful shot rate.
Cole Sillinger – Goal and an assist with three shots. The long term upside for Sillinger is quite high, but he’s either a bottom end streamer or not worth using depending on the line he’s on.
Artturi Lehkonen – Goal and two assists with four shots. Tyler Toffoli and Nick Suzuki each had a goal and an assist as the Montreal first line did well against Columbus. Toffoli and Suzuki are both on the fringe now that they have each other to play with. Lehkonen is a solid player in real life, but he’s stuck towards being a bottom end streamer unless this role lasts and he gets more PP time.
Matthew Boldy – Goal and an assist with two shots. Boldy has been fantastic with nine points in nine games. You can make the case for holding, but I’m still going elite streamer.
Kirill Kaprizov – Goal and an assist with two shots. Eleven game point streak for Kirill The Thrill. He’s a borderline top 10 player now.
Joel Eriksson Ek – Goal and an assist with five shots. JEE is an elite streamer who is on the fringe for me because of how well he hits all of the categories.
Matt Dumba – Two assists with four PIM. Dumba remains a bottom end hold without extra categories, and a slam dunk hold with hits and blocks included.
Three Point Challenge: We’ll do Tuesday’s Games per usual. You can’t take Huberdeau, Draisaitl, Kadri, McDavid, Ovechkin, Rantanen, Kaprizov, Gaudreau, Stamkos, and Panarin. I’ll take Pacioretty against the Sabres.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back Wednesday recapping the action for the next two nights. As always, feel free to ask any questions, leave any comments, or give any suggestions below. Thanks for reading, take care!