Michael Finewax

The Week Ahead

print article archives RSS

Habs lead the way in the East

Friday, February 22, 2013


It is surprising to see that three teams in the Eastern Conference that did not make the playoffs last season are in a playoff spot thus far as Montreal, Carolina and Toronto are in. What is even more surprising is that the Canadiens and Hurricanes lead their respective divisions with the Habs first overall in the East.

 

The Western Conference has two teams in a playoff spot as the Anaheim Ducks and Minnesota Wild are in as of Friday morning while Detroit and the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings are currently out.

 

Happy Birthday to my mom as well as my brother Howie.

 

Don't forget to tune in on Thursday to Google+Hangout when I will join Matt Cubeta, Pete Jensen and Chris Foster, all of NHL.com for our regular fantasy chat. You can send your fantasy hockey questions through Twitter at #NHLHangout. You can watch our last chat by clicking here.

 

Don’t forget to purchase Season Pass by clicking here and while you’re at it, it’s not too late to play Yahoo! hockey.

 

Now to The Week Ahead.

 

WEEK OF FEBRUARY 25-MARCH 3

 

 4 Games– Anaheim, Boston, Buffalo, Carolina, Chicago, Dallas, Edmonton, Florida, Minnesota, Montreal, Ottawa

 

3 Games – Calgary, Colorado, Columbus, Detroit, Los Angeles, Nashville, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, San Jose , Tampa Bay, Toronto, Vancouver, Washington, Winnipeg

 

2 Games - New Jersey

 

Edmonton plays all four games on the road.

 

Boston, Florida, Minnesota, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Philadelphia and San Jose play three games at home this week.

 

Buffalo, Montreal, Ottawa and Pittsburgh play three games on the road.

 

Follow me on twitter!

 

INJURIES

 

Cal Clutterbuck suffered a knee-on-knee hit when Taylor Hall caught him on Thursday and could be out indefinitely. (Click here to see the rest of the injury list.)

 

ANAHEIM

 

Games this week

@ Los Angeles, vs. Nashville, vs. Minnesota, @ Phoenix

 

Notes

The Ducks play four times this week including three games in four nights so it is likely that Jonas Hiller and Viktor Fasth will split the net. The Ducks are the tired team twice this week and are rested once. Anaheim is tired on Monday when they are in Los Angeles after playing at home Sunday against the Avalanche, and Saturday in Phoenix as they host Minnesota Friday. They are rested Friday when they take on the Wild who are in Phoenix Thursday. The Ducks signed Fasth to a two-year/$5.8 million contract this week. Nothing like an 8-0 start to get you a nice contract. The Ducks also signed former GM Brian Burke to act as their pro scout. Cam Fowler is looking to return by Feb. 24 from an upper body injury that has kept him out of action for three weeks.

 

BOSTON

 

Games this week

@ New York Islanders, vs. Ottawa, vs. Tampa Bay, vs. Montreal

 

Notes

The Bruins play three games in four nights so expect to see Anton Khudobin play once in place of Tuukka Rask. A flu bug was going through the Bruins dressing room this past week. It's a good thing they only played twice. Rich Peverley has only two goals and five points in 13 games this season. The Bruins are the best team in the NHL at killing penalties, allowing only three goals in 54 attempts but are tied for the worst power play, along with Colorado, scoring only six times. Milan Lucic missed one game due to personal reasons but apparently all is well now.

 

BUFFALO

 

Games this week

@ Tampa Bay. @ Florida, vs. New Jersey, @ New York Rangers

 

Notes

The Sabres play three times in four days. Jhonas Enroth should get at least one start for the Sabres with Ryan Miller picking up the rest. The Sabres are tired Sunday when they face New York as Buffalo hosts New Jersey Saturday. The Sabres fired coach Lindy Ruff this past week after 15-plus years behind the Buffalo bench and replaced him on an interim basis with their AHL coach Ron Rolston. Drew Stafford has only one goal this season and was put on the fourth line Tuesday. Rookie Mikhail Grigorenko has only a goal and three points in 14 games this season and has been a healthy scratch three times.

 

CALGARY

 

Games this week

@  Minnesota, @ Colorado, vs. Vancouver

 

Notes

The Flames are rested Sunday when they take on the tired Canucks who play the Kings Saturday. Jarome Iginla has scored only once on 57 shots this season and has scored only twice in his last 26 games going back to last season. The Flames have put Roman Cervenka, Jiri Hudler and Roman Horak together to form the 'Czeching Line' as all three are natives of the Czech Republic. Steve Begin scored on Sunday for the first time in almost three years.  Michael Cammalleri has four goals and 11 points in 12 games with six points coming on the power play. Joey MacDonald and Daniel Taylor are splitting the goaltending with Miikka Kiprusoff out of action with a MCL sprain.

 

CAROLINA

 

Games this week

@ Washington, vs. Pittsburgh, vs. Florida, @ Florida

 

Notes

The Hurricanes play three games in four nights as part of a four game week. Expect to see Cam Ward play three times with Dan Ellis getting one start. The Hurricanes play the Panthers in a home-and-home series on the weekend. Kevin Westgarth could pick up some minutes via a fight. Former first round pick Ryan Murphy was recalled on an emergency basis as fellow defensemen Tim Gleason, Joni Pitkanen and Jamie McBain are all out with injuries. Jeff Skinner is out indefinitely with a concussion, his second in the last two seasons. I wonder if it is time to worry about his long-term health. Eric Staal had an 11 game point streak end on Monday.

           

CHICAGO

 

Games this week

vs. Edmonton, @ St. Louis, vs. Columbus, @ Detroit

 

Notes
The Blackhawks finish a seven game home stand and will play three games in four nights as part of a four game week. Corey Crawford and Ray Emery should split the net. The Blackhawks are the tired team twice this week, first on Monday when they host Edmonton after playing Columbus Sunday, and then Friday against the Blue Jackets after playing in St. Louis Thursday. The Blackhawks have tied the NHL record for most games without a loss from the start of the season as they are currently are at 16, with the 2006-07 Anaheim Ducks. Marian Hossa suffered another head injury on Tuesday but is hoping to return Friday.

 

COLORADO

 

Games this week

@ San Jose, vs. Calgary, @ Columbus

 

Notes

Gabriel Landeskog is getting close to returning after suffering a concussion. He has skated for a week and is hoping to participate in a full contact practice on the 22nd. Matt Duchene is back to his form of 2010-11 as he has four goals and eight points in his last five games. He has 17 points in 15 games this season. Tyson Barrie has four points in his last four games and leads all Colorado defensemen with four points this season. Ryan O'Reilly and the Avs still do not have a deal and the restricted free agent's dad got involved this week as he said that negotiations have not been concluded because the management of the team do not value his character. Both sides seem at an impasse and a trade seems like the only alternative.

 

COLUMBUS

 

Games this week

vs. Dallas, @ Chicago, vs. Columbus

 

Notes

The Blue Jackets are a rested team twice this week, first against the Stars Tuesday as Dallas are in Nashville Monday, and then they play a tired Chicago team Friday after the Blackhawks play in St. Louis the night before. The Blue Jackets lost two of three players they received for Rick Nash but Artem Anisimov is returned Thursday after missing two games while Brandon Dubinsky is likely out a couple of weeks with a knee injury. Anisimov suffered a head injury Thursday in his first game back and had to be taken off the ice on a stretcher. Sergei Bobrovsky and Steve Mason are splitting the netminding and have similar stats heading into action on Thursday as Bobrovsky is 3-5-2 with a 2.79 GAA and a .902 save percentage while Mason is 2-5-0 with a 3.00 GAA and a .900 save percentage.

 

DALLAS

 

Games this week

@ Nashville, @ Columbus, vs. Edmonton, vs. St. Louis

 

Notes

The Stars play four games this week including three in four nights so look for Kari Lehtonen, if he is able to return from a groin injury to split duties with Richard Bachman. If not, then Cristopher Nilstorp should get a start. The Stars will be tired on Tuesday when they are in Columbus after playing in Nashville Monday. Boy what a difference a couple of centers make. Derek Roy was hurt early in the season and Jamie Benn was a restricted free agent and since they returned Roy has nine points in 12 games while Benn has 11 points in 12 games. Ryan Garbutt has been a surprising fantasy asset of late with two goals and three points to go with 12 penalty minutes (including two fights) in his last five games.

 

DETROIT

 

Games this week

@ Los Angeles, @ San Jose, vs. Chicago

 

Notes

The Red Wings will be tired Wednesday in San Jose after playing in Los Angeles Tuesday. Jimmy Howard had a scary time on Tuesday when his vision became blurry and he had to take himself out of the game in the first period. He was cleared to play again by doctors on Wednesday. Mikael Samuelsson was slated to replace Damien Brunner on the first power play but injured his hand and is out of action. Twenty-two year-old Tomas Tatar could find himself as a top-six forward before too long. Todd Bertuzzi has been confined to bed rest to help him get over his back woes.   


continue story »
Michael Finewax is entering his 10th season as the Senior Hockey Writer and Editor for Rotoworld. You can follow him on Twitter @mfinewaxhockey.
Email :Michael Finewax



Highest Searched Players over the last 7 days



Video Center

  •  
    Tuesday

    Tuesday's Fantasy Minute
  •  
    Monday

    Monday's Fantasy Minute
  •  
    Beer’s NFL 6 Pack - WR & TE

    Beer’s NFL 6 Pack - WR & TE
  •  
    RotoPat:: Week 3 Rankings

    RotoPat:: Week 3 Rankings
  •  
    Beer’s NFL 6 Pack - QB & RB

    Beer’s NFL 6 Pack - QB & RB
  •  
    Thursday

    Thursday's Fantasy Minute
  •  
    Levitan: Drop options

    Levitan: Drop options
  •  
    Levitan: Biggest flukes

    Levitan: Biggest flukes