Michael Finewax

The Week Ahead

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Friday, February 21, 2014


The Olympics have been at the forefront of the hockey world over the last two weeks but the NHL resumes this week as fantasy fans will get back to looking at the box scores starting Tuesday.

 

The NHL was supposed to take a couple of games off after the Gold Medal match but a snow out forced Buffalo and Carolina to re-schedule on Tuesday.

 

Everyone who participated at the Olympics, save for the final four teams of Canada, Finland, Sweden and the United States, will have received at least a week of time off to recover as the quarter-finals ended on Wednesday. I'm giving you all the players who will not get much of a break as they are playing in medal action on the weekend. These players may get a game off or reduced ice time in their first game back due to jet lag.

 

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

 

While you're at it, please also read Rotoworld writers @RyanDadoun, @CoreAbbott, @cyclelikesedins@kbrownroto and @katshockey for the latest news.

 

Now to The Week Ahead.

 

 

WEEK OF FEBRUARY 24-MARCH 2

 

4 Games- Carolina

 

3 Games–Boston, Buffalo, Colorado, Florida, Los Angeles, Montreal, New Jersey, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Philadelphia, Phoenix, St. Louis, San Jose, Tampa Bay, Vancouver, Washington

 

2 Games - Anaheim, Calgary, Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Edmonton, Minnesota, Nashville, Ottawa, Pittsburgh, Toronto, Winnipeg

 

 

Carolina plays all four games on the road.

 

Buffalo, Colorado and the New York Islanders play three games at home.

 

St. Louis, San Jose and Tampa Bay play three games on the road.

 

 

INJURIES

 

John Tavares injured his knee during the Olympics and is out for the rest of the season. (Click here to see the rest of the injury list.)

 

Editor's Note: Rotoworld's partner FanDuel is hosting a $1,500 Fantasy Hockey league for Tuesday night's NHL games. It's just $10 to join and first prize is $350. Starts Tuesday at 7:30pm ET. Here's the FanDuel link.

 

ANAHEIM

 

Games this week

vs. St. Louis, vs. Carolina

 

Rested team: vs. Carolina (Sunday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Good news for Viktor Fasth owners as he is expected back in the Anaheim lineup shortly after being out since late November with lower body muscle inflammation. Nick Bonino will be ready to go after the break after missing the last four games before the Olympics with an upper body injury. Jonas Hiller was outstanding for Switzerland, stopping 68 of 70 shots but has a week off as the Swiss were eliminated on Tuesday.  Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, Jakob Silfverberg, Teemu Selanne, Cam Fowler and Sami Vatanen are still playing at the Olympics.

 

BOSTON

 

Games this week

@ Buffalo, vs. Washington, @ New York Rangers

 

Rested team: vs. Buffalo (Wednesday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Adam McQuaid (leg) practiced on Thursday and could return to action this week. He has been out since January 19. Tuukka Rask was sensational in Finland's  3-1 win over Russia in the quarter-finals and that has to bode well for the Bruins down the stretch. Zdeno Chara and his Slovakian teammates did not have a good Olympic Games and as a result, he has a full week off before the Sabres game on Wednesday. Patrice Bergeron, Loui Eriksson and Tuukka Rask are still active in the Olympics.

 

BUFFALO

 

Games this week

vs. Carolina, vs. Boston, vs. San Jose

 

Rested team: vs. San Jose

Tired Team: vs. Boston (Wednesday)

 

Notes

The Sabres play three games in four nights so look for Jhonas Enroth to play once this week with Ryan Miller playing the other two games.  Linus Omark signed with Lulea of the Swedish League after the Sabres placed him on waivers Monday. Look for Miller's name to be front and center as the NHL's trade deadline of March 5 approaches. The unrestricted free agent to be will be a great acquisition for a playoff bound team. He is also the only Buffalo Sabre still alive to win an Olympic medal.

 

CALGARY

 

Games this week

vs. Los Angeles, @ Edmonton

 

Rested team: vs. Los Angeles (Thursday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Curtis Glencross (ankle) was able to finally skate but was unable to practice on Wednesday. Derek Smith was recalled by the Flames on Tuesday. They suspended Lane MacDermid who refused to report to Abbotsford of the AHL after their all-star break. Reto Berra was outstanding for Switzerland in their 1-0 loss to Sweden. There are no Flames remaining at the Olympics.

 

CAROLINA

 

Games this week

@ Buffalo, @ Dallas, @ Los Angeles, @ Anaheim

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Anaheim (Sunday)

 

Notes

The Hurricanes are the only team in the NHL to play four games this week and also play three times in four nights so expect to see Cam Ward and Anton Khudobin to split the net. Justin Peters was sent to Charlotte of the AHL on Thursday for a conditioning stint.  Justin Faulk and Tuomo Ruutu are the only Hurricanes still active at the Olympics.

 

CHICAGO

 

Games this week

@ New York Rangers, vs. Pittsburgh

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

It's a good thing the Blackhawks have only two games this week as Jonathan Toews, Marcus Kruger, Patrick Sharp, Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith and Niklas Hjalmarsson are still playing for medals at the Olympics.  Brandon Pirri is being mentioned in trade rumors.

 

COLORADO

 

Games this week

vs. Los Angles, vs. Phoenix, vs. Tampa Bay

 

Rested team: vs. Phoenix (Friday) vs. Tampa Bay (Sunday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Avalanche are home for all three this week. Alex Tanguay will undergo hip surgery on February 21 and is out for the season. The Avs are interested in negotiating a contract extension with Ryan O'Reilly. Semyon Varlamov seemed to have lost his confidence in the quarter-finals for the Russians and you have to wonder if he will let it bother him when NHL play resumes. Paul Stastny, Matt Duchene and Gabriel Landeskog are still playing at the Olympics.

 

COLUMBUS

 

Games this week

@ New Jersey, vs. Florida

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

 

Notes

Marian Gaborik practiced on Wednesday and is hoping that he will be able to play when action resumes on February 27. He suffered a broken collarbone on December 21 and it forced him to miss the Olympics. Gaborik has played in only 18 games this season, and the Blue Jackets could really use his scoring touch down the stretch. The Blue Jackets do not have anyone still left at the Olympics so they should start the last quarter of the season well rested.

 

DALLAS

 

Games this week

vs. Carolina, vs. Tampa Bay

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Kari Lehtonen and Jamie Benn are still playing at the Olympics. Teenager Valeri Nichushkin impressed for the Russians and he is someone to keep your eye on. He has 13 goals and 28 points in 55 games, not too shabby for an 18-year-old rookie. Nichushkin is also a plus-16, the best on the team. Phillippe Desrosiers, the Stars second round pick in the 2013 draft, has set a QMJHL record as he has gone 213:15 minutes without giving up a goal.

 

DETROIT

 

Games this week

@ Montreal, @ Ottawa

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Ottawa (Thursday)

 

Notes

The Red Wings suffered a major blow at the Olympics as Henrik Zetterberg suffered a herniated disc in his back and may be gone for the remainder of the NHL season. Stephen Weiss has been out of action since undergoing sports hernia surgery on December 23 but he is expected to play when action resumes on Wednesday. It is also expected that Johan Franzen will be good to go against Montreal after he has missed the last 22 of 23 games with a concussion. Daniel Alfredsson, Niklas Kronwall, Jonas Gustavsson and Jimmy Howard are still with their respective Olympic teams.


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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 :Michael Finewax



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