James O'Brien

Hockey Daily Dose

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Alexander's Once Again Great

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


NO SHAME ABOUT RAYS

 

Tuesday night was an awfully strong one for guys named Ray.

 

Ray Emery pitched a 20-save shutout, his second in a three-game winning streak where he's started three straight games for the Chicago Blackhawks. Overall this season, Emery's numbers are just flat-out astounding; he's 15-1-0(!) with a .924 save percentage, 1.90 GAA and three shutouts. Almost as astounding is that his backup status (I assume) must keep owners at bay in many leagues, because he's only owned in 64 percent of leagues.

 

Then again, Sergei Bobrovsky is only owned in 74 percent, Evgeni Nabokov is available in 65 percent and fast risers like Ben Bishop and Brian Elliott remain easily available compared to their production, too.

 

I don't know what to say about those figures, other than that I'm starting to wonder if there are a significant amount of "ghost town" fantasy leagues, which would be super sad.

 

Circling back to the Ray theme, Ray Whitney had a strong night in his own right, scoring two goals to give him two straight two-point games after going three contests without a point. While Whitney leaves plenty to be desired in the peripheral stats (just four PIM and 48 SOG in 23 games), I think the stripped-down and surprisingly frisky Dallas Stars setup bodes well for his numbers going forward.

 

I think Dallas is most likely just ruining their chances at a great draft pick with this run, but that might just be me.

 

INJURY NOTES (full list) and QUICK HITS

 

Dany Heatley had season (and postseason) ending shoulder surgery. Go ahead and drop him ... Jarome Iginla’s early grade with Pittsburgh would probably be a C-. Just a goal and an assist with zero PIM in five games. Way too early to beat him up too much, but fantasy owners may wish he stayed in Calgary. We’ll see ... Kari Lehtonen got his monthly lower-body injury last night. It sounds minor, at least so far ... Ilya Kovalchuk is still a bit away from a return, although it sounds like he’s reasonably close to coming back. Maybe just in time to give the Devils fewer lottery balls but not a playoff spot ... Add Sheldon Souray and Tobias Enstrom to the “inexplicably undisclosed” injury club ... Paul Stastny could be back tonight. Maybe he went on a search for his game, which was lost a few years ago. (His paychecks keep coming, though.) ... Semyon Varlamov is day-to-day with a hip issue ... Pascal Dupuis continues to play well, even with Sidney Crosby out of the equation ... Bad time for guys named Chris in Vancouver. Christopher Higgins is out indefinitely with a lower-body injury while Chris Tanev’s the same way with a leg problem. Does Higgins’ loss become Derek Roy’s gain?



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James O'Brien is the Hockey Daily Dose's author and has been a contributor to NBC's Pro Hockey Talk for more than four years. Follow him on Twitter.
Email :James O'Brien



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