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We're very close to the All-Star break with most teams starting their extended break on Sunday.  If you look at defensemen production, specifically in goals, you see notable names at the top.  Dahlin leads defensemen in goals, and then there's a four way tie behind him with notables like Makar and Hughes.  None of that is a surprise.  Weegar is one of those tied with Makar and Hughes, which is very surprising, but he went into the season locked into a big role, so let's assume he had some good fortune.  But Thomas Harley?  He's a player I really liked in dynasties, but to be one goal off the league lead for defensemen?  Not even close to my radar.  Harley scored two goals on Saturday, including the overtime winner for a second straight game, in the 5-4 win over the Capitals.  That gives Harley a whopping 12 goals in 46 games.  "Even with Heiskanen back, Harley was a factor.  I’m still holding Harley even though I wasn’t expecting to when Heiskanen came back.  He’s been that good for the Stars."  And that's me quoting me from three days ago copying what Grey does!  Somehow, Harley is still available in almost two-thirds of fantasy leagues.  With the pool of defensemen dropping off hard at the bottom, Harley should be owned in all formats.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the weekend:
It's been a disastrous season for the Wild, and it's hard to imagine them digging out of this hole.  Monday was a lone bright spot, both for the team and their oldest player.  The Wild beat the Islanders 5-0, with Marc-Andre Fleury posting a 21 save shutout.  The win gave Fleury the second most wins in NHL history, passing Patrick Roy.  It's been a very up and down career for Fleury.  He was incredible in the 2008 playoffs getting Pittsburgh to the finals.  His most iconic moment clinched the Cup the year after.  There were a handful of years right after that where his poor play was the reason the Penguins were eliminated early in the playoffs.  They won a Stanley Cup with him as the backup.  He also saved them the next year when Murray struggled early in the playoffs to lead Pittsburgh to back-to-back cups.  He carried Vegas to the Cup finals in their inaugural season.  That's how I'm going to remember MAF.  There were too many down years for him to be in that inner circle of all-time goalies, and his best generally wasn't among the current elite, as evidenced by him being a Vezina finalist once in 20 seasons.  However, when he was at his best, it was incredible to watch, and that will put him in the Hockey Hall of Fame sooner than later.  For this season, Gustavsson is back, so I expect them to split the games fairly evenly.  He's a streamer in good matchups for now, but like most goalies, MAF can turn into a hold sooner than later, or be complete unusable.  Let's take a look at what else happened over the last two nights:
Before we start, I just wanted to highlight two posts that came out on Monday much later than scheduled because of technical difficulties with the website.  Jules' weekly streaming post can be read here, while I also updated my hold/stream list.  Now back to the scheduled daily notes... It looks worse because of their record, but in reality, Carolina is playing very close to the same level as last season.  The difference is that their goaltending has been dreadful for the better part of three months, and that's from all three goalies.  Thankfully, when they needed it most as Andersen was out with blood clots and Raanta completely lost his game, Pyotr Kochetkov has rounded back into form.  On Tuesday, Kochetkov saved 28 of 29 shots in the Carolina 6-1 win over the Rangers.  Going back to Kochetkov's last ten starts, he's allowed only one goal five times, and has only one game allowing more than three.  Kochetkov has a 2.00 GAA in that stretch so it's no surprise to see Carolina back in second place in the division.  There's a very reasonable chance they finish atop the division again.  Kochetkov is still owned in less than 50% of leagues, and that doesn't make any sense to me.  He's a top five goalie for the last month and should be owned in all leagues.  Let's take a look at what else happened on Tuesday night:
It's not too often that an NHL record that's stood for over one hundred years gets broken.  That happened on Wednesday night.  Despite his role shrinking, Kris Letang had the period of a lifetime.  Letang dished five assists in the second period in a seven minute span, becoming the first defenseman in NHL history to record five assists in a period.  He finished the game with six assists, all at even strength to give him a +6 rating in the 7-0 win over the Islanders.  Even with this game, Letang is far from the defenseman he used to be, partially due to age, and partially due to the arrival of Karlsson.  He's under two shots per game, and has only three goals as a result.  However, the assists are still very good, the hits and blocks are solid, and the PIM are much higher than they've been.  He's the perfect #3/4 defenseman on most teams since he's hitting most of the categories and piling up assists.
To change up from my usual daily notes, I'll be looking at one player on each NHL team today.  All of them had a change in value recently, and I'll look at how they're doing it and what it says about them going forward.  Let's get to it! Anaheim is in dire straits right now.  It's no surprise that they plummeted down the standings after a hot start.  The good news is that Mason McTavish should be back any game now (Zegras sooner than later).  McTavish is the only Duck that I consider a definite hold when healthy.  He's been dropped in a few places because he was never put on IR, but if you're in one of those leagues, I'd grab him.
Hello everyone. Welcome to the second edition of JOT This Down! It was so nice to have hockey back on the screens after so long without it. The NHL is in a really good place in terms of the level of talent in the league right now. In almost every game, you will see a jaw-dropping play or an unbelievable stat line, sometimes from someone you would have never expected it from. Take Brock Boeser for example (add him if he is somehow available), nobody could have predicted that on opening night, but you never know what will happen in the NHL. That’s why in a sport with a lot of luck and volatility, never get too upset if things don’t go your way. It’s a long season, and there’s always next week to bounce back. Treat it as a hobby and have some fun.