Out of the top ranked goalies in the preseason, only Hellebuyck has played at an elite level. This is a big reason why I don’t take goalies in the first two rounds, if not longer, because the variance is too high. My #1 goalie going into the season was Jake Oettinger. He didn’t play well in the first half and also missed time due to injury. The All-Star break proved to be a good reset, as Oettinger was out of his mind on Tuesday. Oettinger made 47 saves in the 2-1 win over the Sabres, stealing the game for the Stars. After tomorrow, there’s only two back-to-backs in the next four weeks for the Stars. We should see Oettinger get plenty of action, and I’d bet on him finishing the season strong. I don’t do midseason rankings because I don’t see a lot of value for the time it takes. You have the team you have, and if you are making trades, you need to target your weaknesses to improve. That said, if I was ranking for the rest of the season, Oettinger would still be a top five goalie. I’m not betting against him. Let’s take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
Jonathan Quick – 32 saves on 33 shots in the 2-1 OT win over the Avalanche. This is why it’s so hard to predict goalies. Quick has been awful in every season besides 21-22 in the past six seasons, and out of nowhere, Quick has been fantastic at age 38. At this point, we have to run with it and stream him in most matchups.
John Tavares – Goal and an assist with six shots and two PIM against his former team. Tavares has taken a clear step back this season. Part of it is poor shooting luck, and his shot volume is the reason why he’s still a hold in all formats. Another part of it is he simply hasn’t been as good despite Nylander playing the best hockey of his career, a large chunk of it with Tavares. We’re starting to see real decline.
Sam Ersson – 20 saves on 21 shots in the 2-1 win over the Panthers. It’s Ersson’s crease now that Carter Hart has been charged with one count of sexual assault. It’s a safe bet that Ersson is the goaltender of the future now too. His save percentage is poor, but the GAA is solid and the wins are above average. Ersson is a #3 now.
Nick Suzuki – Two goals and an assist with three shots. Suzuki picked up where he left off before the All-Star break, pushing his point streak to five games. He’s a bottom end hold.
Michael Matheson – Two assists. The numbers are very good besides the horrible plus-minus. Whether you can stomach that or not depends on your team and format.
Juraj Slafkovsky – Two goals on three shots with two PIM. Slafkovsky has five goals and two assists in his last eight games. With how bad their team is, they should continue to force feed him big minutes. For now, Slafkovsky is a middling streamer.
Dylan Strome – Two assists with six shots. That’s nine points in the last nine games for Strome, making him an elite streamer.
Tristan Jarry – 23 save shutout in the 3-0 win over the Jets. Jarry should continue to be a middling #2G in 12’ers.
Elias Lindholm – Two power play goals playing 21 minutes in his Canucks debut. I was going to start my post talking about Lindholm, but I covered his trade extensively last week, which you can read here.
Brock Boeser – Two assists. Like the rest of the stars on the Canucks, Boeser is blowing away expectations.
Quinn Hughes – Two assists with a shot. All your assists are belong to Hughes!
Jacob Markstrom – 21 saves on 22 shots in the 4-1 win over the Bruins. Easily the best game of the season that I’ve seen from the Flames. Markstrom has settled into being a #2.
Andrei Kuzmenko – Goal on two shots playing 15 minutes. I also covered Kuzmenko’s move in the post linked in the Lindholm section. This game confirmed my assumptions.
Nazem Kadri – Three assists with five shots. Kadri was in great form before the break and picked up where he left off. Clear hold in all formats.
Jonathan Huberdeau – Goal and two assists with three shots. Huberdeau has eleven points in his last ten games, although this was the only goal in that stretch. It’s enough to bump him up to a solid streamer, but he isn’t sniffing a hold yet because of the shot rate.
Erik Haula – Goal and an assist with four shots. The goal was an empty netter with two seconds left. Hughes should be back soon which will drop Haula’s value. For now, he’s a solid streamer.
Jesper Bratt – Goal and an assist with four shots. I’m still learning lessons in year nine of covering fantasy hockey. I was too focused on Bratt’s average shot rate last season that I ranked him too low, even with poor PIM and hits. I’m a massive fan of his game, and I should have bought into him for that reason alone. The shot rate is now at three per game, making him a borderline top 50 player.
Chandler Stephenson – Goal and an assist with three shots. Middling streamer at best due to his poor shot rate.
Adin Hill – 30 saves on 31 shots in the 3-1 win over Edmonton, snapping their 16 game winning streak. Hill was fine with the Coyotes and Sharks, so of course he’d turn into one of the best goalies in the league once he went to Vegas as a pure desperation move. Yay goalies!
Three Point Challenge: We will do Thursday’s games per usual. You can’t take Kucherov, MacKinnon, Pastrnak, McDavid, Miller, Panarin, Rantanen, Pettersson, Hughes, Nylander, or Reinhart. I’ll go with Connor against the Flyers.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back on Friday recapping the action from 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!