I hope everyone was able to watch the game between Pittsburgh and Washington on Monday night because that was everything that hockey should be. Yes, the defense was lacking at times, but man that was beautiful. Unsurprisingly, the star of the show was the #1 overall skater in fantasy to this point of the season, Evgeni Malkin. Malkin scored a hat trick in the second period and finished the game with those three goals, five shots and two PIM. Nobody can be surprised at how well Malkin is doing; his peak performance is on par with anybody in the league. The surprise is that he’s managed to stay healthy to this point <knocks on wood>. I was lucky enough to have him fall to 24th and 25th overall in two separate drafts this season and took the gamble. Hopefully you guys all did the same because we’re currently looking at a 40+55 with 100 PIM season. Here’s what else happened around the league on Monday:
Thomas Greiss – 32 save shutout in the 4-0 win over the Bruins. Greiss has had four strong starts in five. Unfortunately, the one bad game was a disastrous 7 goals against game. I still like him plenty as a #2G going forward.
Jason Chimera – Goal and an assist. He’s on one of the most unlikely three game goal streaks I can remember. I still don’t see anything here.
Cazey Cizikas – Two assists with three shots. He’s a nice player for the bottom six in real life but that doesn’t translate into much fantasy value.
Nikolay Kulemin – Two goals. He was a decent fantasy option once upon a time in Toronto but that was over five years ago now.
Jack Eichel – Two goals on ten shots. Eichel was looking like the player of the night until the goals explosion in the Penguins game. Eichel was dominant throughout this game and brought his total up to four shots on goal per game. He was reunited with Sam Reinhart (assist, three shots) which should help Eichel a lot. I’m hopeful for Eichel going on a dominant run.
Tyler Ennis – Goal on two shots in his return from injury. Ennis scored on his first shift and created a bunch of opportunities. We talked about him on the podcast that will drop two hours after this is posted. I’m going back to him tonight as a streamer (spoiler alert!).
Robin Lehner – 31 saves on 32 shots in the 4-1 win over the Stars. Strong performance from Lehner once again. Yes, the wins are poor and the goals against average is slightly below average but the save percentage is strong.
Jared Coreau – 18 save shutout in the 1-0 win over the Canadiens. Man, what a snoozefest this game was. Coreau is firmly in the “desperate for starts” category.
Thomas Vanek – Goal on three shots. Incredible season for Vanek who is almost at a point per game. There’s talk about Detroit trading him since they’re out of the race yet Vanek wants to stay. For his fantasy value, I’d rather him stay in Detroit. His role is locked in for Detroit with players he’s clicking with.
Carey Price – 19 saves on 20 shots taking the loss. Nice bounceback from Price despite not getting the win.
Ben Bishop – 31 saves on 32 shots in the 2-1 win over the Kings. Bishop was a monster in the third period in this game holding down the fort. With Andrei Vasilevskiy struggling mightily during Bishop’s absence, I expect Bishop to get the majority of the starts in the short term.
Jonathan Drouin – Assist with four shots. Rocking and a rolling right now.
Mark Scheifele – Goal and an assist with two shots. The Jets are sputtering at the moment but that hasn’t stopped Scheifele from piling up the points. So damn good.
Brent Burns – Goal on six shots. Brent Burns doing Brent Burns things!
Timo Meier – Goal and an assist with two shots. Despite his struggles to record points in the early going, his high shot rate is extremely encouraging. Meier is a low end streamer right now but I’m high on him for dynasties.
Chris Tierney – Goal and an assist with two PIM. And there’s your annual Chris Tierney update!
Joel Ward – Goal and an assist. Ward has a couple multi-point games in his last five but he’s still not worth streaming in 12’ers. There’s just not enough in any category.
Andre Burakovsky – Goal and an assist with three shots. He’s now on a three game point streak pushing him back towards the top of the streamer list.
Lars Eller – Two goals. Eller actually has five points in his last four games but I’m still not using him anywhere.
Matt Niskanen – Two assists with two shots. Niskanen is a must-own right now even though John Carlson, who missed Monday’s game, should be back Thursday.
T.J. Oshie – Goal and two assists with five shots. We’d be talking about Oshie pushing towards a top 25 skater if he didn’t miss 10ish games a month ago.
Alex Ovechkin – Two assists with three shots. Ovie is on a five game point streak now and he’s going to blow by his assist totals from the last five seasons.
Sidney Crosby – Goal and three assists with three shots. He actually caught McJesus in points until the Edmonton game later at night. It’s unfair that the Penguins have 87 or 71 out there for over half the game.
Trevor Daley – Three assists with three shots. I would grab Daley everywhere I could and drop him when Kris Letang returns.
Bryan Rust – Goal and an assist with two shots. Decent streamer but his upside is capped without real power play time.
Conor Sheary – Two goals and an assist with four shots. Sheary has becomes the new Chris Kunitz. Nice to be playing with the best player in the world. Clear must own everywhere.
Justin Schultz – Four assists with two shots. With Letang out, Schultz is a borderline top 5 defenseman during this stretch.
Radim Vrbata – Goal on four shots. As mentioned yesterday, I think Vrbata is an elite streamer but it’s to the point where I’m not holding him because of the plus-minus.
Cam Talbot – 20 saves on 21 shots in the 3-1 win over the Coyotes. Not much to take away from this game given that it’s against the Coyotes. We know what Talbot is at this point.
Jordan Eberle – Assist with four shots and two PIM. I think you can go either way with Eberle right now. He’s far from a clear hold at this point.
Elias Lindholm (4.3%) – Going back to the well with Lindholm on fire. Lindholm was the lead for Monday’s notes for his big weekend. Yes, Columbus isn’t the best matchup, but I’m still using him while he’s this hot.
Tyler Ennis (1.6%) – It was a strong performance in his return and because the Sabres were out in front for almost the entire game, Ennis didn’t play a ton of minutes. I like his chances of getting on the scoresheet tonight against the Leafs.
Austin Watson (2.2%) – Watson is rolling right now with a four game point streak. He’s on the second line and gets a nice matchup against the Canucks.
That’s all for now guys. Be sure to check out the latest podcast here when you get a chance. As always, feel free to ask any questions or leave any comments below. I’m on vacation right now but I’ll be sure to check the comments every couple of hours during the day. Thanks for reading, take care!