Mike Finewax

The Week Ahead

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Varlamov in hot water

Friday, November 01, 2013


While the usual talk in hockey is the violence on the ice, it takes a back seat to the violence off the ice this week, namely the allegations against Colorado goaltender Semyon Varlamov.

 

It's a shame what is going on in Denver as Varlamov turned himself into police on Wednesday evening and he spent the night in jail after not being granted bail.

 

Varlamov had a domestic dispute with his girlfriend and I'm not going to go into the details but if you are interested, here is the arrest warrant and affidavit, courtesy of The Denver Post.  

 

The Russian news media has entered the fray, stating that the charges are untrue and it is a plot to keep Varlamov out of the Olympics.

 

In any case, stay tuned as this story is far from over.

 

By the way, Varlamov is an outstanding 7-1-0 with a 1.74 GAA and a .945 save percentage. While it’s impossible to keep up these numbers, it will be interesting to see how far he drops with a likely impending court case in his future.

 

It's not too late to join a Yahoo! pool.

 

Don’t forget, for everything NHL, check out Rotoworld's Player News, and follow @Rotoworld_ HK and @mfinewaxhockey on Twitter.

 

Now to The Week Ahead.

 

WEEK OF NOVEMBER 4-10

 

4 Games - Anaheim, Edmonton, Florida, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Vancouver, Washington, Winnipeg

 

3 Games–Boston, Buffalo, Calgary, Carolina, Chicago, Colorado, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Minnesota, Montreal, Nashville, New Jersey, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Phoenix, St. Louis, San Jose

 

2 Games – Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Toronto

  

Edmonton, the New York Islanders and Vancouver play all four games on the road.

 

Buffalo, Calgary, Florida and Nashville play three games on the road.

 

Anaheim, Boston, Carolina, Colorado, Columbus, the New York Rangers and Winnipeg play three games at home.

 

Editor's Note: Rotoworld's partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $3,000 Fantasy Hockey league tonight (Friday). It's just $10 to join and first prize is $600. Starts at 7pm ET. Here's the link.

 

INJURIES

 

Tyler Bozak is out day-to-day with a lower body injury. (Click here to see the rest of the injury list.)

 

 ANAHEIM

 

Games this week

@ New York Rangers, vs. Phoenix, vs. Buffalo, vs. Vancouver

 

Notes

It's a real anomaly this week as the Ducks will be the rested team three times. They are rested Wednesday when they host Phoenix who are home to Vancouver on Tuesday and are rested Friday and Sunday against Buffalo and Vancouver respectively who play the Kings in Los Angeles on the previous night. The Ducks have lost Teemu Selanne for a couple of weeks as he needed dental surgery for some lost teeth and needed 40 stitches. In addition to Selanne, the Ducks are missing Saku Koivu and Jakob Silfverberg.  Expect to see Kyle Palmieri get a shot on the second line. Viktor Fasth is still out of action so Frederik Andersen is backing up Jonas Hiller.

 

BOSTON

 

Games this week

vs. Dallas, vs. Florida, vs. Toronto

 

Notes

The Bruins are rested on Saturday when they are home to the Toronto Maple Leafs who are home to New Jersey Friday. Milan Lucic is off to a great start with six goals and 12 points in his first 12 games. He also has 14 penalty minutes. Jarome Iginla has goals in his each of his last three games. David Krejci has picked up where he left off in the playoffs as he has two goals and 12 points in 12 games after leading the playoffs in scoring in 2013. Loui Eriksson, the valued player the Bruins received from Dallas in exchange for Tyler Seguin, is out with a concussion. Jordan Caron is seeing extra playing time with Eriksson out.

 

BUFFALO

 

Games this week

@ St. Jose, @ Los Angeles, @ Anaheim

 

Notes

The Sabres continue their California trip with all three games in the Golden State this week. They are the tired team Friday in Anaheim after playing in Los Angles Thursday. John Scott received seven games for his hit to the head on Loui Eriksson. It was a hefty suspension for a first time offender but well deserved. The Sabres dealt Thomas Vanek, a player they were not going to be able to re-sign as he was in the last year of his contract, and picked up Matt Moulson, a first rounder in 2014 that is protected for the first ten picks (otherwise it’s a first rounder in 2015) and a second round pick in 2015. They will likely deal Moulson near the trade deadline and will likely be able to get a very good prospect or more draft picks. Moulson will play with Cody Hodgson and Tyler Ennis.

 

CALGARY

 

Games this week

@ Minnesota, @ St. Louis, @ Colorado

 

Notes

The Flames play three games in four nights so look for Karri Ramo and Joey MacDonald to get one start each with the better goalkeeper getting the other start. The Flames are the tired team Friday in Colorado after playing the Blues in St. Louis Thursday. Mikael Backlund was a healthy scratch on Wednesday for the first time this season. The Flames have some injury problems with captain Mark Giordano out of action for six-eight weeks with a broken ankle and Lee Stempniak indefinitely with a broken foot. Coach Bob Hartley thinks a lot of T.J. Brodie and wants him to expect more from himself. Hartley thinks that Brodie has the capability to be one of the best defensemen in the NHL.

 

CAROLINA

 

Games this week

vs. Philadelphia, vs. New York Islanders, vs. Minnesota

 

Notes

Jeff Skinner and Radek Dvorak were placed on the injured reserve list Thursday and join Cam Ward who will miss two-four weeks with a lower body injury. A good news story in that Manny Malhotra, who lost some vision in one eye when struck by a puck a few years ago, was signed to a one-year, two-way contract by the Hurricanes. He will definitely help in the face off dot. Anton Khudobin is still not ready to play so the Hurricanes are relying on Justin Peters between the pipes.  Skinner still leads the team in points with nine, one ahead of Eric Staal. Jordan Staal has been a big disappointment offensively with a goal and three points in 12 games.

 

CHICAGO

 

Games this week

vs. Winnipeg, @ Dallas vs. Edmonton

 

Notes

The Chicago Blackhawks had a great backup last season in Ray Emery but he moved on to Philadelphia and they inked Nikolai Khabibulin to a one-year deal. Well it certainly has not worked out this season as Khabibulin is 1-0-1 with a 4.74 GAA and a .818 save percentage. By the way, Emery was 17-1-0 with a 1.94 GAA and a .922 save percentage last season. Patrick Sharp has only two goals in 13 games but does have six assists. Brandon Pirri has moved up to the second line with Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad and responded with two assists Monday. Marian Hossa has five goals and 10 points after a one goal, two assist effort on Tuesday but has only one assist on the power play.

 

COLORADO

 

Games this week

vs. Nashville, vs. Calgary, vs. Washington

 

Notes

The Avalanche play two games this week in which they are the rested team. It starts on Friday as they face the Flames who are in St. Louis Thursday night. The Avs take on the tired Capitals Sunday as they are in Phoenix Saturday. The big news of the week is the arrest of goaltender Semyon Varlamov for kidnapping and assault.  He was released from jail Thursday morning and will be allowed to travel with the team as the district attorney is deciding whether or not to lay charges. You have to wonder how this is going to affect him. Jean-Sebastien Giguere should pick up more fantasy value as a result. The Avalanche then dealt Steve Downie to the Flyers in exchange for Maxime Talbot. Talbot will be good for the young Avs as he brings a veteran presence and a winning presence to the club. Matt Duchene is tied for third in the NHL in goals with nine.

 

COLUMBUS

 

Games this week

vs. Ottawa, vs. New York Rangers, vs. New York Islanders

 

Notes

The Blue Jackets will be rested on Thursday when they face the Rangers in Columbus as New York are home to Pittsburgh Wednesday. Boone Jenner will be out double digit days with a leg injury. Marian Gaborik leads the Blue Jackets in goals and points with five and 10 respectively. Columbus has not had a captain since they dealt Rick Nash to the Rangers in the summer of 2012. Brandon Dubinsky has been a fantasy gem in the last five games with two goals, five points, 28 penalty minutes and a plus-six rating and that includes a power play goal. Both of Jack Johnson's goals this season have come on the power play.

 

DALLAS

 

Games this week

@ Boston, @ Detroit, vs. Chicago

 

Notes

Sergei Gonchar has only one point in 12 games thus far. It certainly was not what they paid $10 million over two years for as they thought he could quarterback their power play. Ryan Garbutt is eligible to return on November 3 from his five game suspension for his hit on Dustin Penner. Tyler Seguin has five goals and 12 points in 12 games while Antoine Roussel leads the Stars and is third in the NHL in penalty minutes with 50. He has two assists in 12 games but expect 20-25 points this season from him. He averages 11:35 minutes per game so the Stars are playing him a lot in all situations.

 

DETROIT

 

Games this week

@ Winnipeg, vs. Dallas, vs. Tampa Bay

 

Notes

The Red Wings finish their Western Canada swing on Monday in Winnipeg before returning home for a couple of games. Coach Mike Babcock is showing a lot of faith in rookie defenseman Dan DeKeyser as he has him playing on the top defensive pairing alongside Niklas Kronwall. DeKeyser played 26:42 minutes on Wednesday and the game did not go into overtime.  Daniel Alfredsson is fitting in nicely on the Red Wings as he has 11 points in 13 games. Johan Franzen has not had a good start with two goals and five points in 12 games. The duo of Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk were back together after being split up last week.


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



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