Reid and I are back taking a big look around the NHL.  After we start off by discussing fantasy hockey playoff strategy, we hit on the latest injuries around the league.  From there, we hit on a wide range of subjects.  Among the notables are the Vezina race being a two horse race now, how remarkable Nathan MacKinnon’s season has been, the playoff battles, and the race to the bottom.  We wrap things up by making picks for The Three Point Challenge.  Be sure to make your picks in the comments section below.  All of that and more on the latest edition of the Razzball Hockey Podcast!

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Now is the time of the year where we see college players decide to forgo their collegiate career and sign an entry level contract.  There have been a bunch of players in recent years who have made an immediate impact, such as Chris Kreider and Brock Boeser.  We could have another name to add to the list.  Ryan Donato signed an ELC with Boston and had quite the NHL debut, scoring a goal and two assists with six shots playing almost 20 minutes..  With all of the graduates the Bruins have had over the last year, Donato is currently their #1 prospect (at least in my eyes).  He was a great goal scorer at Harvard and did very well in the Olympics scoring five goals in five games.  His shot is his best attribute but he’s also a strong skater.  I don’t see superstar upside, but Donato can definitely become a top 6’er.  He’s a streamer for now depending on who he’s with and how many minutes he’s getting, but he’s certainly a solid dynasty target.  Donato played on the first power play unit and the second line on Monday, so here’s to hoping that’s what we get for the rest of the season, at least until Patrice Bergeron returns.  Let’s take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:

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Evander Kane is a player that I aggressively rank every season.  The shot rate is always elite, the penalty minutes are great, and the goals should come along with those shots.  Thankfully for his owners this year, Kane has managed to stay healthy.  Kane had the best game of his career on Friday, scoring four goals on seven shots and adding two penalty minutes.  He followed that up with eight shots on goal and two PIM on Saturday.  That brings Kane’s totals to 25+25 with 65 PIM and almost 4 shots per game.  Obviously he’s must own, but what is his ceiling going forward?  I don’t think his point totals are going to change much depending on where he signs in the offseason.  What can change is his plus-minus.  Sure, plus-minus is generally hard to predict, but there are some situations that you can feel better about.  Obviously Buffalo was almost worst case for that, and Kane is +5 in San Jose to this point.  Yes, it’s a small sample, but we’ve seen around the league this year that a lot of teams are loaded with big plus-minus totals.  Kane has never been much of a power play guy either, but maybe he goes somewhere that he plays on the top unit and improves.  I feel like he’ll be in the bottom of my top 50, but obviously things can change between now and then.  For those who have him for this year, enjoy him down the stretch.  With his shot volume, Kane can be a massive difference maker if he has some good fortune.  Let’s take a look at what else happened over the weekend:

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To say James van Riemsdyk had a decent two games would be an understatement.  The Charlie Conway look-alike scored five goals over the last two nights, scoring a hat trick against the Stars on eight shots before scoring two goals and an assist against the Sabres.  That brings JVR to 31 goals and 16 assists on the season with just under three shots per game.  Obviously he’s owned in virtually all leagues at this point, but I wanted to start off with him because he doesn’t get the credit he deserves.  He’s played at a 27+ goal pace for six straight seasons now and the two goals last night gave him a new career high.  I’m not sure Toronto will be to keep the impending UFA past this season, but one thing is for certain: JVR is about to get paid handsomely.  Look for him to maintain his value no matter where he ends up, meaning someone who is a top 75-100 player.  Let’s take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:

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Hey everyone!  Hopefully your fantasy seasons are still going as we enter the last month of the season.  Instead of normal daily notes, I’m going to discuss one situation for every team throughout the league.  We’ll get back to normal notes on Wednesday morning, but I feel like this was a good chance of pace to highlight some new developments around the NHL.  Let’s get to it!

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I’ll be honest, David Krejci has always been a Guy to me.  Not a guy, not a GUY, just a guy.  I even cut him on Thursday morning to stream a goalie, proof that I am human.  Krejci scored a hat trick on Thursday, scoring on all three of his shots in the 8-4 win over Pittsburgh.  That brings him to 14+19 on the season in 44 games.  He doesn’t quite need that pace to be fantasy worthy, but it’s close because his PIM and SOG are well below average.  In a 12’er, I probably lean towards holding but it’s super close.  Shallower, he’s a streamer, deeper it’s an easy hold.  His playoff schedule is also great so use that to your advantage.  Let’s take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:

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As far as disappointments for this season go, Cam Atkinson is near the top of the list.  After his breakout last season with 35+27, Atkinson has struggled mightily on the ice and with an injury.  We’re finally seeing signs of Atkinson getting back to last season’s level.  Atkinson scored a shorthanded goal and added two power play assists with five shots on goal in the Columbus win on Monday. That gives Atkinson 4+4 in his last 9 games with at least three shots on goal in each game during that span.  The minutes are strong so that hasn’t been a problem.  The issue has been that Columbus’ power play has been so bad that Atkinson had only 3 STP before this game (which he doubled in this one).  Columbus has been better on the man advantage lately, and the arrival of Thomas Vanek should help them even more.  Atkinson is still available in over 40% of leagues and in a 12’er, I’d grab him right now while he’s finding his groove again.  Let’s take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:

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It took a few injuries, but we finally had some goaltender movement.  Petr Mrazek, who appeared to be Detroit’s franchise goalie less than two years ago, is now a member of the Flyers.  In return, Detroit received two conditional draft picks.  Best case scenario, they’ll get a 2nd and 3rd round picks.  Worst case, they only get a 4th.  So what is the fantasy impact?  I’ve been writing for a few weeks that Mrazek should be owned everywhere because he was finally playing well.  That’s clear as day now going to a much better situation in Philly, so grab him if he’s still available.  As for in Detroit, it should be Jimmy Howard’s show.  He has a .910 save percentage this season, which is closer to his career norm than last season’s .927 in 26 games.  I don’t see him as being much more than a desperation play going forward outside of the best matchups.  Let’s take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:

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Hey, everyone.

It’s been a busy couple weeks for me, with work at its most intense and a recent bout of the flu. I hope you are all securing playoff positions and building potent lineups for a championship push- for many, these next few weeks are critical. Advice comes in many shapes and forms, but here’s my extended-streamer column for the week of 2/12.

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He hasn’t been talked about much but as far as disappointments go, Ryan Johansen is near the top of the list.  It wasn’t that long ago that he was a 22 year old scoring 33 goals and 30 assists, followed up by 26+45.  Johansen had 4 straight 60+ point seasons before this year and to be blunt, he’s been awful compared to his high standards.  Johansen had his best game in quite some time Thursday, dishing three assists and putting three shots on goal in the 5-0 win over the Kings.  The main reason I’m encouraged by this?  Filip Forsberg.  The Swedish star returned from injury on Thursday and immediately went onto Johansen’s wing.  Still, five goals and under 1.5 shots per game on the season isn’t going to get it done for Johansen owners.  In the last three games, Johansen has at least three shots on goal, so I think he’s going to keep building.  I don’t think we see Columbus Johansen again, but I don’t see why last season’s Johansen can be back for the rest of the season.  Let’s take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:

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