The greatest goal scorer in the history of the NHL has made a massive push down the stretch to push many teams towards a fantasy championship. While his shot rate and goal rate have dropped this year, Alex Ovechkin is still a monster. He had his best game of the season scoring a hat trick and an assist with six shots in the 5-4 OT win over the Wild. That brings his totals to 33+33 on the season with a solid plus-minus and penalty minute contribution. Obviously it’s disappointing his shot rate went from five per game to four per game but it’s still outstanding. We discussed on the podcast where Ovechkin will rank for next season and while I don’t think he’s worthy of the top selection anymore, he’s still a top five pick without hesitation. Here’s to hoping he finally gets over the playoff hump and Ovechkin gets the accolades he deserves. Let’s take a look at what else happened on Tuesday night:
Tuukka Rask – 24 saves on 25 shots in the 4-1 win over the Predators. He looked fine in his return from a brief absence. Look for Rask to start every game the rest of the way.
Cam Ward – 21 saves on 22 shots in the 4-1 win over Detroit. If you’re desperate for starts, Ward should get a bunch the rest of the way. I don’t have much hope in those starts being great but I’m fine with using him.
Justin Faulk – Two assists with two shots. He was discussed on yesterday’s podcast. There’s a ton of upside here next year but the floor is also low which I would guess is a surprise to most people.
Elias Lindholm – Goal on two shots and two PIM. I’m going to be a big fan next season as a pick in the later rounds.
Nikolaj Ehlers – Goal on five shots. It’s been a rough second half for Ehlers but I’m still all in for dynasties.
Blake Wheeler – Goal and an assist with two shots and two PIM. Wheeler has been incredible down the stretch and remains a personal favorite of mine. He’s a perfect third round selection regardless of who your top two picks were for his contributions across the board.
Pavel Zacha – Assist with a shot. He has an assist in seven of the past nine games which is obviously encouraging. That said, it’s going to take a big increase in his shot rate for him to be 12’er worthy next year.
Kyle Turris – Goal and an assist with five shots. It’s been a very solid year for Turris who is playing right around a 30+30 pace per 82 games. It would be nice if the shot rate could get back over 2.5 shots per game but regardless, he makes a nice pick in the middle rounds for his stability.
Craig Anderson – 33 saves on 35 shots in the 3-2 SO loss to the Flyers. He’s alternated amazing years and brutal years going back to 2009-10 so hopefully next season isn’t a disaster.
Sergei Bobrovsky – 41 saves on 42 shots in the 3-1 win over the Sabres. Bob doing what Bob does. Looking pretty damn good for a second Vezina Trophy.
Carey Price – 27 saves on 28 shots in the 4-1 win over the Stars. Price was absolutely incredible in this game stopping a handful of breakaways. We know exactly what Price is capable of.
Max Pacioretty – Goal and an assist with four shots. It’s been a year of streaks for Patches but at the end of the year, the numbers will be great. Still has to be a top 50 player.
Keith Yandle – Two assists with a shot. For me, this year has been very disappointing for Yandle. I thought he would get close to Arizona levels but his numbers are worse than in New York. He’s basically become an elite AAGNOF now who is a #3 or 4D instead of a top end #2.
Zach Hyman – Goal and an assist with two shots. He’s a bottom end streamer at best.
Leo Komarov – Goal and an assist. Slightly better streamer than Hyman but still not much there for Uncle Leo right now.
Curtis McElhinney – 25 saves on 27 shots in the 3-2 win over the Panthers. I have little faith in McElhinney’s abilities but if you need starts, he’s an option until Frederik Andersen returns.
Nicklas Backstrom – Three assists with two shots. This is just getting ridiculous.
Marcus Johansson – Four assists. It’s bottom end because of the shot rate but there’s still plenty of value here if you need STP, +/- and assists.
T.J. Oshie – Two goals on three shots. We’d be looking at a guy who’d definitely be a top 20 guy if he didn’t miss over 10 games. Granted Oshie is shooting almost 25% but it’s so good everywhere.
Martin Hanzal – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM. There’s not much value now but I could be back on the Hanzal bandwagon depending on where he goes in the offseason.
Jason Pominville – Goal and an assist with three shots. Pominville is a bottom end streamer at this point in his career.
Jared Spurgeon – Goal and two assists with two shots. I wouldn’t count on him replicating this season in the future but Spurgeon has been excellent this year at the bottom of rosters.
Cam Talbot – 34 saves on 35 shots in the 2-1 win over the Kings. He’s a huge reason why the Oilers clinched their first playoff berth in over a decade. Repeating what I’ve said for a while, I think Talbot will remain a #1 next season but this is probably the best season we’ll ever see from Talbot.
Patrick Eaves – Goal on six shots. There’s a good chance he gets to 30 goals after reaching 20 in his career once and that was in 2005-06. Another nomination for waiver wire of the year, I’m not optimistic for future success unless he lands in the perfect spot.
Nick Ritchie – Goal and an assist. He’s progressed from his rookie year but my guess is that Ritchie doesn’t become a hold until 2018-19. That said, there’s a good chance he becomes a strong streamer next year.
Antoine Vermette – Two assists with two shots. At this point, Vermette’s days of fantasy relevance are over.
Jonathan Bernier – 34 saves on 35 shots in the 4-1 win over the Canucks. He’s arguably been the fantasy MVP over the last month. If you were the one who grabbed him off waivers, you made out like a bandit.
Brock Boeser – Goal on three shots. I’m all in on Boeser going forward. It wouldn’t shock me if he becomes a hold next season.
Kevin Hayes – Two assists with three shots. Hayes has slumped quite a bit down the stretch. I’m fine with dropping him for more volume.
J.T. Miller – Two goals on four shots. Same story as Hayes although I’m more likely to hold onto Miller.
Brady Skjei – Three assists with a shot. Great rookie year for Skjei who has been strong in assists and plus-minus while helping out in plus-minus. It’s a safe assumption that his role is going to increase next year so I’m going to want some shares of Skjei as say, my 4th defenseman next year.
Mikkel Boedker – Two assists with three shots and two PIM. Year one in San Jose has been close to a disaster. He’s unusable right now outside of the deepest of leagues.
Jannik Hansen – Goal and an assist with two shots. Hansen hasn’t done much in San Jose (three points in nine games) so I’m not using him anywhere right now.
Chris Tierney – Two goals on five shots with two PIM. Tierney simply doesn’t have the role right now to be fantasy relevant. I don’t see that changing any time in the near future.
Patrik Berglund (12.0%) – Back to the well with Berglund going against the Desert Dogs. He didn’t do much against them on Monday but I expect a bounce back.
David Perron (17.0%) – There’s nobody I want to use on Washington so I’ll double up on the Blues second line.
Tanner Kero (0.4%) – He centered Kane and Panarin last game so on a small slate, I’m willing to take a shot.
That’s all for now guys. Please ask any questions, leave any comments or podcast topics below. With only four games on the slate tonight, the next set of daily notes will go up on Friday. That said, a new podcast will be up Thursday afternoon so be sure to check that out and make your Three Point Challenge picks for Thursday’s games. Thanks for reading, take care!