The Chicago Blackhawks were the best team in the Western Conference during the 2016-17 regular season but unlike in years past, the postseason had no success.  The Blackhawks were demolished in the first round by the Predators leading them to make some radical offseason changes.  Out goes Artemi Panarin, back comes Brandon Saad.  Out goes Marian Hossa due to injury, back comes Patrick Sharp.  Out goes Niklas Hjalmarsson, Connor Murphy comes back in return.  Overall, I really don't like the direction that Chicago is going as I discussed on this podcast.  Despite the fact that I think they could be in a battle this season just to make the playoffs, there's still plenty of fantasy talents worth discussing.  Let's take a look at what they're working with:
Everyone who reads this space knows my love for Brent Burns. His beard brings about a magisterial power that guides him on the ice. The Sharks played on Monday and Tuesday to open the week and their all-world defenseman delivered. In Monday's loss to the Rangers, Burns scored two goals and an assist with seven shots. He followed it up with 2 assists and three shots against the Islanders putting him in the early league lead for points. Burns and Erik Karlsson are in a class of their own right now among defensemen and should battle each other season for top dog status on the blue line. Here's what else I've seen around the league the last two nights:
As a Sabres fan, it was tough to watch Andrei Vasilevskiy lock the game down Thursday night in the Lightning 4-1 win over Buffalo.  After a horrible first period, the Sabres dominated the game but Vasilevskiy took control.  Coach Jon Cooper said that Vasilevskiy's going to get a bunch of games in the near future so add him if you can. He's an excellent target in dynasty leagues. After this season, either he gets traded or the Lightning trade Ben Bishop.  Either way, you're a winner.  In one year leagues, he will have plenty of value in spot starts. Here's what else I saw Thursday night: