It’s been very up and down this year for Sean Monahan but as we approach the end of the year, his numbers are exactly in line with last season. After scoring a goal and adding two assists on Monday night against the Coyotes, Monahan is sitting at 27+32 with 184 shots on goal after 31+31 and 191 last season. With six games left, it looks like he will slightly best last season’s big breakout. The 21 year old isn’t going to end up a top 20 player, that’s not his offensive ceiling and he doesn’t contribute in penalty minutes (16 this year is a career high) but he should be around 50th overall in drafts next year since there’s a good chance he can get to 70 points with some progression. Here’s what else I saw around the league on Monday night:
Mark Scheifele – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM. My love for Scheifele is approaching Grey’s level for Delino DeShields!
Blake Wheeler – Goal on seven shots. Should get to 70 points despite having a poor shooting percentage. With the shots and PIM he provides, Wheeler is an all-around fantasy stud.
Steve Mason – 26 saves on 28 shots in the 3-2 overtime win over the Jets. Keep rolling him as he starts every game down the stretch.
Claude Giroux – Goal and an assist with five shots. He’s not too far off his big years of the past but I expect more from him this year as Giroux should be right in the middle of his prime.
Wayne Simmonds – Goal on three shots. He can do no wrong at this point.
Braden Holtby – 21 saves on 22 shots in the 4-1 win over the Blue Jackets to clinch the Caps the President’s Trophy. Holtby has obviously been outstanding this year but there is some concern now that the Caps play Philipp Grubauer 3 or 4 times in their last 7 games.
Matt Niskanen – Two assists with five shots. In general, it’s been a tale of two seasons for Niskanen: with and without John Carlson (assist and three shots). Without Carlson, Niskanen was close to a top 20 defenseman. With Carlson in the lineup, he’s borderline in 12’ers. Since the Caps have 7 games left (more than most), I’d hold him for now.
Nicklas Backstrom – Goal and an assist with two shots and two PIM. Should be another 70 point season for Backstrom. I will probably be lower than most on him next year, albeit not by a lot, because I hate taking guys who take 1.5 shots a game in the first 2 or 3 rounds.
Jimmy Howard – 18 saves on 20 shots in the 3-2 win over the Sabres. The Red Wings went up 3-0 with 3 minutes left on an empty netter only for Buffalo to score two late goals to ruin Howard’s shutout and then save percentage. That said, I’d still roll every Detroit starter while they are battling for the playoffs.
Henrik Zetterberg – Two assists and five shots. Unlike most of the other old guys around the league, Zetterberg really fell off this year. He should still get to 50 points with decent shots so there’s still value here but nowhere near where it used to be.
Dylan Larkin – Goal on two shots. It hasn’t finished as well as it started but Larkin being a plus in all categories as a 19 year old is quite the accomplishment. Bright future for this kid.
Casey Nelson – Assist, +2. I talked about him yesterday but to reinforce, I like Nelson’s game and think he could be a very sneaky play next season in deep leagues, assuming he sticks in Buffalo.
Sam Reinhart – Goal on four shots. My favorite streamer now as 22 goals and 40 points after wasting away on the fourth line for the first two months of the season. The future looks really good in Buffalo.
Ben Bishop – 34 save shutout in the 3-0 win over the Leafs. Amazing that the Lightning were outshot 34-18 at home by the Leafs but it didn’t matter with how Bishop played. While the wins are down from the past two years (still a big plus), a 2.02 GAA and .928 sv% is absurd.
Victor Hedman – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM. With the injury to Anton Stralman, expect Hedman to get some extra minutes for the rest of the season giving him a slight fantasy boost.
Steven Stamkos – Two assists and two shots. Can’t even keep his goal scoring streak going, what a joke. I kid, I kid. The only concerning thing here is that Stamkos’ shots are down. He’s shooting a better percentage than last year but has 7 less goals because he’s taken 56 less shots. His shooting percentage is always amazing so he simply needs to take more shots.
Erik Condra – Two assists and two PIM. He’s my ideal fourth liner but that doesn’t do us much for fantasy.
Blake Comeau – Goal and an assist with five shots and two PIM. It’s been inconsistent for Comeau in his first year for Colorado; I’ll probably be looking to stream him as the Avs fight for the last playoff spot.
Gabriel Landeskog – Goal on two shots. He’s gone slightly backwards each of the last two seasons after his big breakout in 2013-14 but most of the problem is the lack of quality linemates for extended stretches. He’s never going to be a point per game player but Landeskog should be able to get 65 points with strong PIM. The big worry is here is that his shot rate has dropped every season he’s been in the league. Somebody tell him to start shooting more again!
Pekka Rinne – 7 saves on 10 shots before being pulled 11:40 into the game. No surprise, we were due for a Rinne dud. I more than likely will be passing on him next year.
Filip Forsberg – Two assists and a shot. All around great season for Forsberg who has even contributed 41 PIM this year. Easily in the top 50 again for me.
John Gibson – 26 saves on 27 shots in the 2-1 win over the Oilers. Keep rolling the Ducks goalie in every start. I hope that the Ducks trade Fredrik Andersen in the offseason, otherwise we will be in the same mess again next year where both goalies are valuable but only starting 40ish games.
Rickard Rakell – Assist and two shots. Streamer success! Fellow Ducks streaming candidates Jamie McGinn and Brandon Pirri each had a point as well. The Ducks do have 7 games left so keep these guys on your radar.
Nail Yakupov – Goal on three shots playing on the first line with Taylor Hall and Leon Draisaitl (assist each). It came out recently that Yak requested a trade and it would probably be the best for him to get one. He may seem like a bust but if you look at his quality of teammate over the years, Yakupov has played with some really terrible centers.
Sam Bennett – Two goals on three shots. This season hasn’t changed much for me in terms of my future prognosis on Bennett; he’s going to be really good and soon.
Joe Colborne – Goal and an assist with two shots and two PIM. He’s been strong to close the season and is a decent option in say, 16’ers or deeper if you need somebody. He’s going to hurt you badly in shots though.
Michael Ferland – Two assists and two shots. Unless you’re in a deep league that counts hits, there’s nothing to see here.
Hunter Shinkaruk – Assist in his NHL debut. He’s shown offensive potential in the AHL with 26 goals and 49 points in 59 games. Shinkaruk is worth keeping in mind for next season, probably as a streamer to start in 12’ers and then ownable in 16’ers or deeper.
Anthony Duclair – Two goals on three shots. He’s ending the season on a high note. Unless he starts taking more shots, we can’t expect a better year next season than the 19+23 he has with 49 PIM and +11. Shooting 20% isn’t going to happen again.
Martin Hanzal – Two assists. Just like Duclair, Hanzal is having a big finish while the rest of the team wilts. It’s a matter of staying healthy for Hanzal.
Vincent Lecavalier – Two goals. He’s been surprisingly decent offensively since going to LA but it’s only usable in deep leagues. There are better streaming options at this point.
Brent Burns – Two assists and four shots. Looks to have a lock on finishing as the #1 defenseman this year.
Joe Pavelski – Goal and an assist with four shots. Little Joe has an outside shot at 40+40 which would be remarkable.
Justin Braun – Two goals with two PIM. In a deep league that counts blocked shots, maybe you can consider Braun but he’s nowhere near 12’er worthy.
Tommy Wingels – Two assists with two shots. Same as Braun but with hits. After scoring 15+ the last two seasons, Wingels only has 7 this year.
Melker Karlsson – Goal and an assist with two shots. With Tomas Hertl (assist, two shots, two PIM) finding his form again, Karlsson hasn’t received the chance to play on the first line like he did last season. That has killed his fantasy potential.
Evander Kane – Left the game yesterday with an upper-body injury; coach Dan Blysma said he’s doubtful for tonight so get him out of your lineups.
Alex Steen – Returning tonight against the Avalanche. Get him in your lineup tonight. Just stay healthy!
Tuesday Streamers – There are nine games on the slate tonight giving us plenty of options to choose from. Here are my top three:
Robby Fabbri (6.3%) – Going back to the well here. He has 8 points in the last 9 games and the Blues should dominate against Colorado.
Sam Reinhart (8.8%) – I don’t think I have to explain this one. Even with a less than ideal matchup, Reinhart is on fire.
Josh Bailey (0.3%) – Early indications are that Bailey will be with John Tavares again tonight putting Bailey firmly on the streaming radar.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back on Wednesday recapping tonight’s action. As always, feel free to ask any questions and leave any comments below. Take care everyone!