Michael Finewax

The Week Ahead

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Oilers and Wild hit the Road

Friday, November 3, 2017


It’s not exactly what you would expect but of the top seven save percentages thus far this season, there are only two names that most would think should be there.

 

Corey Crawford is third and Jonathan Quick is fifth among goalies who have played in at least four games but the remainder in order are: Oscar Dansk, Anders Nilsson, Michal Neuvirth, Connor Hellebuyck and Mike Smith.

 

If you are wondering why your fantasy pool stats are upside down in the category, now you know why.

 

There is plenty of information and good chatter always on the Rotoworld Hockey Podcast. Listen here.

 

Editor's Note: Rotoworld’s Season Pass is now available for the low price of $19.99. You get plenty of extra articles including the minor league report, the junior report and much, much more. Buy it now!

 

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

 

WEEK OF NOVEMBER 6-12

 

4 Games – Arizona, Boston, Columbus, Edmonton, Minnesota, New Jersey, Toronto, Vancouver, Washington

 

3 Games – Anaheim, Buffalo, Carolina, Chicago Detroit, Florida, Los Angeles, Montreal,  New York Islanders, New York Rangers,  Pittsburgh, St. Louis,  San Jose, Tampa Bay, Vegas, Winnipeg

 

2 Games - Calgary, Colorado, Dallas, Nashville, Ottawa, Philadelphia

 

Edmonton and Minnesota play all four games on the road.

 

Arizona, Florida, Tampa Bay, Vancouver and Winnipeg play three games on the road.

 

Anaheim, Montreal, New Jersey, the New York Rangers, Toronto and Washington play three games at home.

 

INJURIES

 

Marc-Edouard Vlasic is out with a head injury. (Click here to see the rest of the injury list.)

 

Note: A tired team is one that has played the day or night before and is going against a team that did not play the previous day or night. The reverse is true for a rested team.

 

ANAHEIM

 

Games this week

vs. Los Angeles, vs. Vancouver, vs. Tampa Bay

 

Rested Team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Kevin Bieksa has missed the last four games with an injured hand. He has been practicing with the teams so he could be back this week. Ryan Getzlaf is on injured reserve with a facial injury, but he too can return this week. Andrew Cogliano is leading the Ducks with nine points in 12 games. He has played in 798 consecutive games, fourth most of all-time behind Doug Jarvis, Garry Unger and Steve Larmer. Brandon Montour has four goals and seven points. Not bad for a blueliner. Corey Perry may not be the player he was. After a 53 point season last year, he has only seven points in 12 games thus far. He likely misses Getzlaf who has seven points in six games.

 

ARIZONA

 

Games this week

@ Washington, @ Pittsburgh, @ St. Louis, vs. Winnipeg

 

Rested Team: vs. Winnipeg (Saturday)

Tired Team: @ Pittsburgh (Tuesday)

 

Notes

The Coyotes play four games this week with three coming in four nights. Antti Raanta should be in fine form and ready to play three games while Scott Wedgewood will likely see action once. Raanta was taken off injured reserve Thursday. The Coyotes waived defenseman Adam Clendening. Jakob Chychrun (offseason knee surgery) is skating but there is no timetable for his return. Clayton Keller was the NHL’s rookie for the month of October as he had nine goals and 15 points in 11 games.  The Coyotes are 1-12-1 this season. Dylan Strome has been setting the world on fire in Tucson of the AHL where he has a goal and 10 points in six games. Max Domi has a goal and 10 points in 14 contests with a minus-eight rating.

 

BOSTON

 

Games this week

Minnesota, @ New York Rangers, @ Toronto, vs. Toronto

 

Rested Team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Tuukka Rask is back and should play in three games this week with Anton Khudobin (if healthy) playing once as the Bruins play three games in four nights as part of their four game week. They also play a home-and-home series with Toronto and if there are any fisticuffs, then Brad Marchand could see his penalty minutes total rise.  David Backes is out a minimum of eight weeks after undergoing colon surgery for diverticulitis. We wish him a speedy recovery. Kevin Miller has 36 penalty minutes, 27 on Monday in a game against Columbus. Patrice Bergeron has six points in six games. David Pastrnak has 11 points including six goals in 11 games but is a minus-seven.         

 

BUFFALO

 

Games this week

vs. Washington, vs. Florida, @ Montreal

 

Rested Team: vs. Washington (Tuesday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Jack Eichel was pulled off the first power play and now is playing on the second unit with Kyle Okposo, Evander Kane, Victor Antipin and Jake McCabe while the first unit consists of Jason Pominville, Ryan O'Reilly, Sam Reinhart, Rasmus Ristolainen and Matt Tennyson. I’m not sure why Tennyson is on the first unit as he has not had a point in any of the 13 games this season. Okposo continues to disappoint with a goal and four points in 11 games, although he looks to be breaking out with a goal and two assists in his last two games. Matt Moulson is pointless in nine games. The Sabres have yet to get a goal from a defenseman. Ristolainen leads the blueliners with five assists but much more is expected out of him.

 

CALGARY

 

Games this week

vs. Vancouver, vs. Detroit

 

Rested Team: vs. Vancouver (Tuesday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Flames play only twice this week for the second week in a row. The good news is that they have been at home for the two weeks and that helps. Mike Smith was outstanding Thursday as he stopped 43 shots in a 2-1 overtime win over the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins. Sean Monahan has seven goals in 13 games. Matthew Tkachuk continues to be a terrific power forward as the 19-year-old has three goals, nine points and 14 penalty minutes. Sam Bennett has yet to garner a point in 13 games. The Flames put Freddie Hamilton on waivers and he passed through. He could be sent to the minors. T.J. Brodie leads the Flames blueliners with nine points, three better than Dougie Hamilton and four ahead of Mark Giordano.

 

CAROLINA

 

Games this week

vs. Florida, @ Columbus vs. Chicago

 

Rested Team: None

Tired Team: vs. Chicago (Saturday)

 

Notes

I really did not think that Justin Williams still had fantasy value in him when he signed in the off-season with the Hurricanes but lo and behold, the veteran is tied for the team’s scoring lead with a goal and nine points in 11 games. Elias Lindholm is headed for a career year. He always gets off to slow starts but has three goals and seven points in 11 games. He should crack the 50 point mark for the first time this season. Cam Ward did not look good on Thursday, giving up five goals on 27 shots to Colorado in a game the Canes fired 60 shots on Varlamov. Sebastian Aho scored 24 goals as a rookie but has not scored in 11 games thus far.

 

 CHICAGO

 

Games this week

@ Philadelphia, @ Carolina, vs. New Jersey

 

Rested Team: @ Carolina (Saturday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Blackhawks play three games in four nights so look for Corey Crawford to play twice with Anton Forsberg getting a start on the weekend. Crawford has sparkled this season with a .941 save percentage to go with a 1.91 GAA and got his first shutout in almost a year Wednesday when he stopped 35 in a 1-0 win over the Flyers. Gustav Forsling is out with a head injury. Patrick Sharp has gone seven straight games without a point. Nick Schmaltz is centering the second line with Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad as his linemates. Duncan Keith has seven assists in 13 games but has yet to score a goal and is pointless in his last four games.

 

COLORADO

 

Games this week

vs. Ottawa, @ Ottawa

 

Rested Team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Avs play the Senators in a back-to-back series this week for their only games. Look for A.J. Greer to get involved if there is any rough stuff as he has 16 penalty minutes in only four games. Semyon Varlamov stole one for the Avalanche on Thursday as he stopped 57 shots in a 5-3 win over Carolina. That’s the goaltending Colorado will need if they have any hopes of making the playoffs. Mikko Rantanen leads the Avs in points with 11 and is tied for the team lead in goals with Gabriel Landeskog and Sven Andrighetto with four. Tyson Barrie has 10 points and his plus-minus has greatly improved over last season as he is only a minus-four.  

 

COLUMBUS

 

Games this week

@ New York Rangers, vs. Nashville, vs. Carolina, @ Detroit

 

Rested Team: None

Tired Team: vs. Nashville (Tuesday), @ Detroit (Saturday)

 

Notes

The Blue Jackets play four times this week including three games in four nights. Sergei Bobrovsky should see the net three times with Joonas Korpisalo getting the crease once. Bobrovsky continues to excel as he is 8-2 this season with a 2.07 GAA and a .932 save percentage. Good news for Zach Werenski owners as coach John Tortorella wants him to be more of a rover than a defenseman. That will allow Werenski to use his offensive skills as he should be playing a more aggressive role on the offense. He has eight points in 13 games so far, and could get 50-plus points this season. Artemi Panarin leads the Blue Jackets in points with 11 but has only one goal in 13 contests. Tyler Motte has two goals in two games since his recall on the weekend. 

 

DALLAS

 

Games this week

vs.  Winnipeg, @ New York Islanders

 

Rested Team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Brett Ritchie sat out Thursday’s game with an upper body injury. Martin Hanzal has missed the last two games with a lower body injury but that is no surprise as he gets hurt a lot. The Stars sent defenseman Julius Honka to the minors this past week as he was pointless in six games. The Stars were carrying eight defensemen at the time and Honka needs to play. Expect to see him back in the NHL soon. Jamie Benn leads the Stars in points with 14, one ahead of Tyler Seguin. John Klingberg is tops on the blueline with 11 points. Devin Shore has seven assists in 13 games but is a minus-10. Keep an eye on Esa Lindell. The defenseman has three goals and five points in 13 games but scored in back-to-back games last week.


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Michael Finewax is entering his 13th season as the Senior Hockey Writer and Editor for Rotoworld. You can follow him on Twitter @mfinewaxhockey.
Email :Michael Finewax



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