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As far as stunning results go, the Senators going into Calgary and winning 6-0 against Calgary is up there.  They then matched it on Saturday night beating the Oilers 6-1.  Not bad for back to back games against two elite teams on the road without their best player.  Leading the way for the Senators was Kyle Turris.  Over the two games, Turris scored two goals on five shots with four assists and two PIM.  Reid’s man crush has the ability to be a top 100 player in fantasy.  Will this be the year he gets there?  Maybe, but even if it’s not, Turris should be owned in all leagues.  Let’s take a look at what happened over the weekend:

Friday’s Games

Nicklas Backstrom – Goal and three assists with three shots.  He’s started hotter than a pistol with 11 points in 6 games.  We need the shots to go up but Backstrom is tearing it up.

T.J. Oshie – Two goals and an assist with three shots.  Great start for Oshie; playing on the second line with Backstrom has paid dividends for the entire top six in Washington.

Alex Ovechkin – Goal and an assist with four shots.  The four shots were the lowest Ovechkin has had in a game this year so the goal scoring isn’t a fluke.  Should we talk about ESPN and Yahoo! ranking him outside of the top 10 again?  Sorry, I can’t help myself.

Evgeny Kuznetsov – Two assists with a shot.  All of your assists are belong to Kuznetsov!

Kyle Palmieri -Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM in his return.  Grab him if he’s available in a 12’er.

Seth Jones – Goal and an assist.  I don’t think we’re going to see the offensive upside some people Jones had in his draft year but regardless, Jones should be owned everywhere.

Zach Werenski – Two assists with three shots.  The shot rate being at 3 per game is a great start.  If Werenski can keep that number, he’ll be in elite company.

Sergei Bobrovsky – 37 saves on 38 shots in the 3-1 win over the Rangers.  Bob is in prime form already pushing for another Vezina Trophy.  You know what to do.

Craig Anderson – 25 save shutout.  After a rough opener against the Capitals, Anderson has been outstanding.  If you ended up with him as your second goalie, I’d feel content.

Cody Ceci – Goal and an assist with two shots.  There’s some short term value until Karlsson gets back if you need some help on the blueline.

Derick Brassard – Goal and an assist with two shots.  Great start to the year for Brassard after a rough first year for Ottawa.  He was must own the previous two years in New York and there’s a decent chance he gets back to that level this year.

Jonathan Bernier – 17 saves on 18 shots in the 3-1 win over the Ducks.  Bernier revenge game!  In all seriousness, I still don’t trust using him when he starts.

Sven Andrighetto – Two assists with four shots.  In 25 games with the Avs, Andrighetto has 21 points.  I don’t think he can maintain that level but he can’t be ignored by the masses here much longer.  I was pumping his tires on last year’s trade deadline podcast and he’s been even better than imagined.  In 14’ers or deeper, he’s a clear must own.  For standard leagues, Andrighetto is an elite streamer.

Mikko Rantanen – Two assists.  Despite no shots in this game, Rantanen is pushing three shots per game after being below two last year.  Whether or not that can be maintained will largely determine his present and future value.

Henrik Zetterberg – Goal and three assists.  He’s simply ageless and continues to dominate.

Anthony Mantha – Goal and two assists with four shots.  My love affair with Mantha is reaching serious levels and no longer will be contained.

Gustav Nyquist – Two goals and an assist.  This game saw Nyquist finally get on the board in terms of points.  He’s a middling streamer at this point.

Marc-Andre Fleury – 21 saves on 27 shots in the 6-3 loss to Detroit, but more importantly suffered a concussion.  Malcolm Subban is the replacement in the short term and is the guy if you’re desperate for starts.  More on him later as his debut was excellent.

Saturday’s Games

Auston Matthews – Two goals on three shots.  Great start to the year for Matthews with 5 goals and 3 assists in 5 games.  He’ll be on the borderline of a top 5 pick in 2018-19.

Jonathan Drouin – Goal and an assist.  There’s been a lot of progress in Drouin’s shot rate in the early going in Montreal which is excellent considering the quality of his shot.  While I’m not a big fan of Montreal, Drouin is showing his massive upside.

Will Butcher – Two assists.  It may be only assists, but with 8 assists in 5 games, Butcher should be owned while he’s a hot schmotato.

Claude Giroux – Two goals and two assists with four shots.  If you played a Flyers stack on Saturday against the Caps, congrats on all of the monies.  Giroux playing on the wing has seemingly helped in the early going.

Jakub Voracek – Three assists with two shots.  With nine assists in five games, Voracek is rolling.  It’s a shame for the Flyers that they’re only 3-2 considering how well their studs are playing.

Sean Couturier – Two goals and an assist with three shots.I would own Couturier in 10’ers and deeper right now while he’s finally being used in a larger role.

Shayne Gostisbehere – Three assists.  The bounce back is real.

Wayne Simmonds – Goal and an assist with four shots.  The penalty minutes aren’t here yet but no complaints with Simmonds’ start.

Scott Laughton – Two goals on three shots.  There’s plenty of potential long term but for now, Laughton is at the bottom of the streaming radar.

Philipp Grubauer – 29 saves on 37 shots in the 8-2 loss to Philly.  Tough luck for anyone who streamed Grubauer.  I would still use him going forward when he gets the nod.

Kris Letang – Two assists with five shots playing over 28 minutes.  Just stay healthy!

Sidney Crosby – Two goals on four shots with two penalty minutes.  On top of 8 points in 6 games, Crosby has given his fantasy owners a nice boost with 10 PIM in the first 6 games.

Evgeny Dadonov – Two assists with two shots.  Dadonov has transitioned extremely well to the NHL scoring 5 points in his first 4 games.

Jonathan Huberdeau – Two goals on five shots.  Same story with Huberdeau who has at least one point in every game so far.

Andrei Vasilevskiy – 28 saves on 29 shots in the 2-1 win over the Blues.  His overall numbers aren’t great right now but based on the eye test, Vasilevskiy has played incredibly.  If you could trade for him if you need goaltending help, he’s a guy I would target despite a 3.20 GAA.

Connor Hellebuyck – 28 saves on 29 shots in the 2-1 win over the Hurricanes.  With three straight terrific starts, Hellboy looks to be in control of the #1 spot in Winnipeg.  Will it last?  I certainly hope so, but even if it doesn’t, Hellebuyck should be owned everywhere right now.

Nikolaj Ehlers – Goal and an assist with six shots.  After a couple pointless games to open the season, Ehlers has 7 points and 16 SOG in the past three games.  Pretty, pretty, pretty good.

Ben Bishop – 22 saves on 23 shots in the 3-1 win over the Avalanche.  It’s weird to see the Stars get solid goaltending but it’s finally happening with Bishop.

Tyler Seguin – Goal and an assist with seven shots and five PIM.  Seguin fighting was quite the shock; the two points and seven shots weren’t.  He’s been absolutely buzzing in the early going with 36 SOG in 5 games!  The assists are surely going to start coming and the goals will be there at this rate.

Jamie Benn – Goal and an assist with two shots playing over 22 minutes.  Hitchcock doesn’t have a problem playing his top line massive minutes.  After a slow start, Benn has a three game point streak.

Devin Shore – Two assists with three shots.  Shore is playing on the first power play unit making him a solid streamer.

Tyler Ennis – Two goals on three shots.  With all of the injuries Minnesota is dealing with, Ennis becomes a nice streamer once again.

Ryan Suter – Two assists with two shots.  Suter is playing a ton of minutes and shooting the puck more than usual which is an encouraging sign.  At the end of the day, I expect him to settle around where he always does.

Artemi Panarin – Three assists with three shots playing over 24 minutes.  Torts trusting a Russian doesn’t seem right but it’s an excellent sign.

Alexander Wennberg – Goal and an assist.  All I ask from you, Mr. Wennberg, is that you can get over 2 SOG so you can become a top 100 fantasy player.  I don’t think I’m asking much.

David Savard – Goal and an assist with four shots.  He’s had at least three shots in every game so far which is tremendous for a defenseman.  If you need help there, Savard can be your guy in the short term.

Corey Crawford – 37 saves on 38 shots in the 2-1 OT win over the Predators.  They don’t give you trophies for the first two weeks of the season but Crawford has been the best goalie in the league so far and it’s not particularly close.

Zdeno Chara – Goal and two assists with three shots and two PIM.  You’ll get some big games occasionally from Chara but he’s a bottom end hold at best in 12’ers now, mostly for decent penalty minutes.

Brad Marchand – Goal and an assist with two shots.  I’m ready for Marchand to take off once Bergeron returns, which should be very shortly.

David Pastrnak – Goal and an assist with two shots and two PIM.  See Marchand, Brad

Dalton Heinen – Two assists with five shots.  I don’t see much of an opportunity for Heinen going forward to become fantasy relevant.

Jake DeBrusk – Goal and an assist with three shots.  Solid streamer right now with some real upside in dynasties.

Mike Hoffman – Two goals and an assist with four shots.  Don’t hassle the Hoff, man!  This game erased a slow start from Hoffman although it’s bound to come around with his shot rate over four per game.

Zack Smith – Two assists with three shots playing almost 20 minutes.  While Smith is on the first line, he’s a viable streamer.

Mark Stone – Two assists giving him multiple points in three of the first five games.  Stone is a player who seems to go under the radar but is extremely consistent.

Dougie Hamilton – Two goals on four shots.  Dougie is back to his usual of hitting all of the stats across the board.

Jaromir Jagr – Assist.  All indications are that he’s going to play on the first line in Calgary’s next game on Thursday making him a great streaming option if he can click with the kids.

Jack Eichel – Goal and an assist with four shots and two PIM.  Excellent start for Eichel except that his shot rate is much lower than last year.  One 8 shot game would get him back on track though.  Perhaps Tuesday in Vegas?

Drew Doughty – Goal and an assist with two shots.  The Kings power play scored three goals in this game where Doughty took advantage.  In good years, Doughty will give you what Dougie gave last season.  In bad years, he’s only a slight step behind that.  Doughty is a safe #2 fantasy defenseman through and through.

Tyler Toffoli – Goal and an assist with three shots.  Toffoli only played 14 minutes but the shot rate has made a nice jump in the early going.  I’ve never been a huge fan for fantasy but if he shoots the puck enough, Toffoli can get back to 30 goals.

Sunday Games

Malcolm Subban – 21 saves on 22 shots in the 3-1 win over the Bruins.  It’s his crease until Fleury returns and while I don’t trust him, Vegas is playing well right now.  If you want to take a risk, I’m fine with grabbing Subban.

Vadim Shipachyov – Goal in his first game.  Only played 11 minutes so not enough there right now but I suspect that’s going to increase.

Alex Tuch – Goal and an assist with four shots.  I’m a pretty big fan in the long term but like Shipachyov, the minutes need to increase for any short term value.

Chad Johnson – 25 saves on 26 shots in the 3-1 win over the Ducks.  Solid performance from Ochocinco but it’s still Lehner’s job.

Johan Larsson – Goal and an assist with five shots.  I won’t say it’s his annual update but there’s not a lot here in terms of fantasy value.

Anze Kopitar – Goal and an assist with two shots.  Kopitar has been dominant in the early going getting back to superstar levels.  A top 50 season appears to be a lock.

With only one game on Monday, there will be no daily notes until Wednesday.  And for the first time in over two years, it won’t be me writing the notes!  Reid will be filling in for me as I’m currently in Vegas to see the Sabres play them on Tuesday night.  He’ll be answering your questions in the comments section on Wednesday and I will answer them as well on Wednesday afternoon. As always, feel free to ask any questions or leave any comments in this post and I’ll be sure to answer them to the best of my abilities.  Thanks for reading, take care!

  1. Brad says:
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    Hi Viz,

    Great write up as always!

    Do you think there’s any upside in Aaron Dell? I wasn’t high on Martin Jones coming into this season and he hasn’t played well in the early going. Dell has elite numbers over the last couple of seasons. Will the Sharks coaching staff start giving him more starts and ultimately stir up a potential goalie controversy? Or, in your opinion is Jones 100% the guy no questions asked?

    Thanks a lot.

    Brad

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Brad: Thanks! I don’t see any chance of there being a controversy in SJ unless Jones is bad for a couple months. I suspect Dell may get an extra start or two here or there but Jones is the unquestioned #1.

  2. Fungazi says:
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    Would you rather have Lehner or Varlamov in a 12 team W/GAA/SV%?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Fungazi: I’m still going Lehner despite the strong start for Varlamov

  3. Mr. Rickey says:
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    Who do you long term of these:

    Brassard, Dadonov, Landeskog, Coutier or Ratanen

    And of these:

    McAvoy, Orlov or Savard

    Thanks – always enjoy the write ups.

    • Mr. Rickey says:
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      @Mr. Rickey: Sorry – who do you like long term

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Mr. Rickey: I would go Dadonov among the forwards and probably McAvoy on the blue line. Thanks!

  4. Brad says:
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    One last question! I can likely trade Panarin or ehlers for pastrnak. I’m loaded on LW but weak at RW. I also have Skinner and Huberdeau at LW. My RW’s are Palmieri, Mantha, Neiderreiter and Burakovsky. Ehlers has looked so good thus far so I’d rather deal Panarin for Pastrnak if I can. What do you think?

    Brad

    • Wu Tanguay Clan says:
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      @Brad: I would 100% do Panarin for Pasta, he;s got a much higher shots ceiling and the B’s are missing Bergeron so far – will be doing much better when he’s back. Depending on how the Pasta owner is feeling, you may even be able to get more becasue Panarin is looking good so far.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Brad: Ask as many as you like! Yeah, Wu Tanguay summed up my thoughts here, I’d make the move for Pastrnak. It’s really up to you whether you want to move Panarin or Ehlers, I had both ranked very similarly.

  5. Scott says:
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    Stream Tatar or Nyquist today?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Scott: Lean Nyquist since the first line that crushed at the end of last year is back together. I do think Tampa beats them tonight but that shouldn’t stop the Red Wings guys from being a decent play

  6. Chris says:
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    Would you take a chance on Namestnikov while dropping Silfverberg? I’m in love with the fact that he is on the first line with Kuch and Stamkos as well as the first PP.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Chris: I’m good with that, the upside is definitely there for it to pay off.

  7. Mal says:
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    Do you think Gallagher will contribute more in the long run, or should I drop him to the waivers for now and start streaming? I always seem to handcuff myself and get attached to players too early in the year, and don’t stream for a couple of weeks, while I’ve posted decent points, but lost to people who are streaming. Only other potentials I can see would be Stepan or Horvat, but both of them seem to be doing better.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Mal: I would drop him for Horvat, I’m a huge fan of his this year. I do like Gallagher but I don’t think he’s as good as either Horvat or Stepan so I would grab Horvat and potentially turn it into a streaming spot if Horvat doesn’t take off.

  8. Kevin says:
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    Trade stone for Sheary?

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      @Kevin: I would lean towards yes, you take on some risk in case Sheary drops off the first line again, but his upside is higher than Stone’s.

  9. Clive says:
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    Thanks Viz!
    With Lehner struggling would you drop him for Varlamov? Or am I overreacting in the early going?

    Thanks!

    • Clive says:
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      @Clive: Nevermind, saw your post above.

      • Viz

        Viz says:
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        @Clive: No worries man

  10. Dubjay says:
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    Hey Viz,
    So I’m thinking of upgrading my dmen. I currently have
    OEL
    GOTHISBEHERE
    PROVOROV
    ORLOV
    I like the upside here but it is a redraft league. A couple of new guys are available
    McAVoy, Ellis, parayko
    Would you grab any of them over provorov, ORLOV?
    Thanks

  11. lackeydrinksonme says:
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    Hey, Viz

    2-0 currently, dropped two goalie categories and tied for W’s running only Holtby and the one Raanta start, so the as-much-offense-as-possible strategy seems to work so far.

    Like I mentioned last week, I shed the weight of my two Anaheim Ducks, and ran Mantha, Green, Tatar, Larkin, and Zetterburg last night, on top of having Kucherov active. My opponent had nobody at all, which means I’m already winning in most categories (including SOG, 19!!)

    Today we both play a full 11 men, then Wednesday he has only two while all my Red Wings are going along with Kopitar. This will likely be the trend all week, so if anyone is looking for a huge boost:

    PICK UP RED WINGS NOW AND DROP THEM MONDAY MORNING!!

    With such a packed slate on T/Th/St, it only helps for counting stats (especially SOG, Hits, and +/- if you get lucky with 3 men on ice) if you take advantage of the days where there are fewer games, and Detroit plays basically all of those days.

    I also want to mention that Mantha looks incredible on the ice- not only is he quick with a terrific shot, but that kid is HUGE. Like 6’4″, bruiser-style huge, and he doesn’t act like it until someone tries to get in his face. There was a sequence ~1-2 minutes before the end of 2nd period where Mantha was all over the ice, he’s an incredible athlete. Thanks for advising we pick him up- I’ll probably hold onto him and cut the others at the end of the week (thoughts on Larkin?).

  12. Mordacious Levator says:
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    18 team dynasty with hits/blocks/faceoffs/PPP/Short HP real life rosters
    C hischier/taveras/e.staal/ryjo/stamkos
    LW marleau/vrana (RW)/sobotka/stafford (wow, i picked a good day to notice he was on top line, streamer in theory)
    RW reaves (when i took team over it appeared to need hits/blocks/PIMs)/kucherov/vanek (LW)/hayes
    D savard/faulk/schultz/risto/hedman/nurse/cole
    IR/IR+ sekera/okposo (able to waiver him, somebody dropped him)/perlini
    NA (max 5) kostin/gauthier/sprong/kaprizov
    G dubnyk/luongo
    IR/IR+ raanta
    NA parsons

    who’s my drop for okposo, i guess it’s reaves

  13. Scott says:
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    Zach Hyman or Uncle Leo?

    • Scott says:
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      @Scott: or Connor Brown?

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