The Senators have been a disappointment this season despite their big forward acquisitions in the summer.  Turns out that you can't get away with completely ignoring the blue line and being forced to give bad players big minutes.  Anyways, we don't care about that for fantasy, we care about their scoring, and their top players have largely delivered.  Claude Giroux had a great weekend, totaling three goals and two assists with ten shots over two games.  Giroux is having his best goal scoring season since his monstrous 34 goal, 102 point season in 2017-18.  Unsurprisingly, that season and this season are Giroux's two highest shooting percentages, but it seems a bit more sustainable in this environment in Ottawa.  Even with an inconsistent PP1 role, Giroux has still played his way into being a bottom end hold in all formats.  The one problem is that after Ottawa's game on Tuesday, they don't play again until February 11th.  My biggest point here with bottom end holds over these bye weeks is that you need to know your league format and whether the waiver wire is strong enough that you can drop someone like Giroux to get more games.  In head to head leagues, volume is king, so you can make a case after Tuesday that you can let him go for players with a bunch of games after the All-Star break. In roto, I would hold onto Giroux without hesitation.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the weekend:
It has been a terrible year for Kris Letang on and off the ice, but mostly off.  He suffered a stroke and his father passed away shortly after.  After almost a month away from the team, Letang returned on Tuesday and carried the Penguins to victory.  Letang had a vintage performance, scoring two goals and two assists with six shots, four hits, and two blocks in the 7-6 OT win over the Panthers.  I'm not going to say Letang will have a monster second half based on one game in his age 35 season.  The good news is that there's a lot of games left for him to make an impact, and we know how big the upside is.  If I said Letang was a top five defenseman the rest of the way, would you be shocked?  I wouldn't.  Now, the floor is much lower in the past, even assuming he can stay healthy.  However, Pitt is starting to round into form, offensively at least, and the opportunity is there for a big finish.  If your team is in position where you need to take a gamble, I would float some offers to the Letang owner.  If I had him and was patient through the first three months, fingers crossed that he can salvage the season.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
It was great to see Aleksander Barkov back in the lineup on Thursday, and if you didn't get him back into your lineup off injured reserve, well, that one is going to hurt for a while.  Barkov scored a hat trick in the first period against the Canadiens and added two assists in the 7-2 win over the Canadiens.  It hasn't been Barkov's best season to this point, but I'm buying Barkov going forward to get back to being well over a point per game.  Florida has dug itself quite a hole in the playoff race and I expect Maurice to really ride their top six even more.  Barkov's shooting percentage is also much lower than his career sh% (10.3 vs 14.0) so look for some positive regression in the New Year for the Panthers captain.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
The Blues are in the middle of a brutal schedule, playing three back-to-backs in a row, including four games in six days.  They pulled off the first back-to-back through Alberta before going to Vancouver on Monday.  There, Jordan Kyrou stole the show.  Kyrou scored a hat trick on five shots while adding an assist in the 5-1 win, giving him 10 points in his previous four games.  Unfortunately for Kyrou, he was injured late in the game and missed Tuesday's debacle against the Kraken with a UBI.  It's unclear how serious it is, but I do find it a bit encouraging that the news that he was out came later on Tuesday instead of immediately after the game Monday or early Tuesday.  With only one game over the next week, let's hope that he misses minimal time while he's on a heater.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
What better way to become the third player ever to 800 goals than to score a hat trick?  Alex Ovechkin did just that on Tuesday, scoring three times and adding an assist against the Chicago Blackhawks.  He's only one goal behind Gordie Howe for second all-time, and then the real chase towards Gretzky starts.  Ovechkin already has 20 goals this season in 31 games, a mere 53 goal pace for the 37 year old.  He's over four shots per game, and while the plus-minus is disappointing, it's starting to turn around a bit.  My love for Ovechkin is well known in these parts, so I don't need to belabor the point, but I can't wait for the greatest goal scorer ever to push towards 895.  Here's to hoping he keeps battling father time and gives hockey fans a great chase.  Let's see what else happened over the last two nights:
As fun as it is to make fun of Toronto's Stanley Cup drought, it's very impressive when somebody breaks one of their major records.  On Saturday, Mitch Marner did just that, getting a point in his 19th consecutive game, scoring twice on five shots.  Toronto fans love to make Marner their whipping boy, but this should give him a respite until the playoffs come along.  The shot rate is slowly creeping back up for Marner, which is a necessity if he's going to approach last season's point total.  He's a bit behind at even strength, but he's managed to be even better on the power play.  Marner is as safe as it gets in fantasy at this point and remains in the top 20.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the weekend:
Remember when the Devils fans were chanting "Fire Lindy" two games into the season?  My, how the tides have turned.  The Devils have won 13 of 14 since, including 10 in a row.  The most recent win was 5-1 against the Canadiens on Tuesday with their star players leading the way.  Jack Hughes scored twice on seven shots and added an assist in the victory.  Hughes now has multiple points in six of his last ten games, and is pushing 4.5 shots on goal per game.  Even with a lack of penalty minutes, that's enough to be the top 20 player that I ranked him as before the season.  The future is incredibly bright in New Jersey with two elite defensemen prospects coming to support the excellent foundation in place.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
It wasn't the best start to the season for the defending Stanley Cup Champions, who were 4-4-1 in October.  Time off before playing the Blue Jackets twice in Finland was just what they needed to get back on track.  Colorado won 6-3 on Friday before winning 5-1 on Saturday.  The stars led the way in both games.  Nathan MacKinnon dished seven assists between the two games, Mikko Rantanen had a hat trick on Friday, totaling 3+2, while Cale Makar had a goal and four assists.  Columbus is a complete disaster defensively, but it's great to see Colorado's stars continue to dominate.  Sadly, their weekend ended on a somber note with the passing of Peter McNab.  He was one of the best TV analysts in the league and he will be sorely missed.  Thankfully, he survived his illness long enough to get to see the Avalanche win the Cup again.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the weekend:
The Canucks have been showing signs of life lately, especially offensively.  Right now, there's no better cure for early season woes than going against the Ducks.  On Thursday, Vancouver scored eight goals, and their big offseason acquisition led the way.  Andrei Kuzmenko had a hat trick and an assist, giving him eight points in his last four games.  He's found great chemistry with Pettersson (more on him later) and Kuzmenko has kept his spot on the first power play unit.  He's on the fringe, but for now, I would definitely hold while he's this hot.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
In terms of expected goals and puck possession, the Devils have been the best team in October, bar none.  They've been absolutely dominant and earned every single bit of their 6-3 record.  Their most impressive win came on Friday beating the Avalanche 1-0, and they followed that up with a complete demolition of Columbus, 7-1.  The common denominator?  Vitek Vanecek started both of these games.  Vanecek saved all 24 shots from Colorado before saving 20 of 21 shots from the Blue Jackets.  We're looking at a time share in New Jersey, but Vanecek appears to have grabbed the upper hand for now.  Before the season, I had little interest in either of their goalies.  Now, with how well they're playing, both could be owned in 12'ers, but Vanecek definitely has to be.  Ride the hot hand while you can.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the weekend:
During the longest playoff drought in NHL history, there have been plenty of hot starts from the Sabres.  While I still expect that drought to extend for another season, Thursday's game against the Flames felt different.  Coming off a win that they stole in Edmonton, the Sabres came in with house money.  They got a 4-1 lead before giving a goal with 1.6 seconds left in the second that the linesman inexplicably kicked into the middle of the ice.  Then, the Flames scored a minute into the third.  Old Sabres teams would have collapsed, but this one took over the rest of the game, winning 6-3 and being the better team against an elite Calgary team.  Leading the way was Alex Tuch, scoring a hat trick to give him five goals in the past three games.  Tuch has at least three shots on goal in all four games this season.  Buffalo's schedule for the rest of the month?  Vancouver, Seattle, Montreal, Chicago and Detroit.  Yeah, Tuch definitely needs to be held for the time being.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights: 
It's that time of the year again.  For those of you who haven't seen this post in the past, I will break down every team's schedule for fantasy hockey playoffs i.e. starting on this coming Monday, 4/4.  I will note when a team has a back to back or a light day.  A light day is a day where there are four or less games on the schedule, with the exception of Wednesday, 4/27.  I am including that day where there are five games because it's the last day of the season where you'll need streaming, as the last two days both have a lot of games.  I will do the teams in alphabetical order so it's easy to find everyone, and next to each team, there will be (A,B,C,D).  Those numbers will be how many games the team has in each of the four weeks left in the season.  For example, (4,2,3,3) means they have four games from 4/4 - 4/10, two games from 4/11 -4/17, etc.  This post is going to be extremely long, so it will be broken into two parts, with part two coming on Monday.  If you have a specific question about a team next week that will be in part two and you need it answered immediately, please let it be known in the comments section and I'll answer it for you.  And away we go!