Michael Finewax

The Week Ahead

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The Playoff Race

Friday, March 9, 2018

Playoffs start in many leagues either this week or next. The best way to plan for your fantasy squad is the knowledge of what lies ahead. Should your playoffs start this week, add the schedule in the body of the column to the following last three weeks.


12 Games – Boston, Florida


11 Games – Arizona, Buffalo, Carolina, Nashville, Ottawa


10 Games – Chicago, Columbus, Detroit, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Minnesota, Montreal, New Jersey, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, San Jose, Tampa Bay, Toronto, Vancouver, Vegas, Washington Winnipeg


9 Games- Anaheim, Calgary, Chicago, Dallas, Philadelphia


In addition, here is each team’s breakdown:


Anaheim (3, 3, 3)

Arizona (3, 4, 3)

Boston (4, 4, 4)

Buffalo (4, 3, 4)

Calgary (3, 3, 3)

Carolina (3, 4, 4)

Chicago (3, 3, 3)

Colorado (3, 4, 3)

Columbus (4, 3, 3)

Dallas (3, 3, 3)

Detroit (3, 4, 3)

Edmonton (4, 3, 3)

Florida (4, 4, 4)

Los Angeles (4, 3, 3)

Minnesota (3, 3, 4)

Montreal (4, 3, 3)

Nashville (4, 4, 3)

New Jersey (3, 4, 3)

NY Islanders (3, 4, 3)

NY Rangers (3, 4, 3)

Ottawa (3, 4, 4)

Philadelphia (3, 3, 3)

Pittsburgh (4, 4, 2)

St. Louis (3, 3, 4)

San Jose (3, 4, 3)

Tampa Bay (3, 4, 3)

Toronto (3, 4, 3)

Vancouver (4, 3, 3)

Vegas (3, 4, 3)

Washington (3, 4, 3)

Winnipeg (3, 3, 4)


The schedule is slightly different from the beginning of the season as Carolina and Boston end the season on the Sunday to make up for their postponement of a January game.


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4 Games – Anaheim, Carolina, Colorado, Dallas, Detroit, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Montreal, Ottawa, Philadelphia, St. Louis, San Jose, Vegas, Washington, Winnipeg


3 Games – Arizona, Boston, Calgary, Chicago, Columbus, Florida, Minnesota, Nashville, New Jersey, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Tampa Bay, Toronto, Vancouver


2 Games - Buffalo, Pittsburgh


Dallas and Detroit play all four games on the road.


Anaheim plays all four games at home.


Boston, Edmonton, New Jersey, Ottawa and San Jose play three games on the road.


Arizona, Florida, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Tampa Bay and Vegas play three games at home.




Max Pacioretty could be gone for the season with a knee 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.




Games this week

vs. St. Louis, vs. Vancouver, vs. Detroit, vs. New Jersey


Rested Team: vs. Detroit (Thursday), vs. New Jersey (Sunday)

Tired Team: None



Rickard Rakell scored a pair on Thursday to reach the 30-goal mark for the second straight season. He has 58 points in 63 games and has been a great fantasy help to poolies. John Gibson lost for the first time in seven contests Thursday, dropping his record to 25-16-6. Corey Perry’s downward spiral continues this season as he hit the 40 point mark in his 57th game. He had only 53 points last season and 62 the year before after being around a point-a-game player his previous seven seasons. He has lost most of his fantasy value and should be a middle-to-late round pick in deeper drafts next season. Jakob Silfverberg has two goals and four points in his last three games as seems to be getting hot as the season draws to a close.




Games this week

vs. Los Angeles, vs. Nashville, vs. Minnesota  


Rested Team: vs. Los Angeles (Tuesday), vs. Minnesota (Saturday)

Tired Team: None



Arizona finally is not alone in the basement as their recent 8-2-2 run has allowed them to tie Buffalo at 53 points for 30th overall in the NHL. Antti Raanta is out with a lower-body injury that has forced him to sit out the last two games. His status for the week is unknown at this time. The Coyotes recalled Adin Hill to back up Darcy Kuemper in the interim. Clayton Keller has four points in four March games to give the rookie 48 points on the season. Remember in October when he was the runaway leader for the Calder. His name is never mentioned now. The Coyotes signed Tyler Steenbergen to a three-year entry level deal. Derek Stepan has four points in his last five games to give him 42 this season.




Games this week

@ Carolina, @ Florida, @ Tampa Bay


Rested Team: @ Carolina (Tuesday)

Tired Team: None



The Bruins are on the road for all three games this week. Tuukka Rask has gotten his game back as he has won his last three contests including stopping 31 shots Thursday in a 3-2 win. Brad Marchand is having another great season with 29 goals and 68 points in 53 games. David Backes will return to action against Carolina after being suspended for three games for his high and late hit on Detroit’s Frans Nielsen. David Pastrnak is on a tear with five assists in his last two games as well as a goal and 10 helpers in his last seven games. He has 23 goals and 63 points in 65 contests. Torey Krug saw his four game scoring streak snap on Thursday but the blueliner did have three goals and nine points during the streak. He has 47 points in 61 games to date.




Games this week

vs. Toronto, vs. Chicago


Rested Team: vs. Toronto (Thursday)

Tired Team: None



After a terrible start to the season, Sam Reinhart is becoming fantasy-relevant of late as he has five points in his last four games and 38 points in 68 games this season. The former second overall pick in 2014 should be on your radar next season and picked up late in deeper drafts. Kyle Okposo is day-to-day with an undisclosed injury suffered Thursday. Daniel O'Regan made his Sabres debut Thursday after he was the only player acquired in the Evander Kane deal to San Jose. He was held scoreless. Rasmus Ristolainen has 22 points in his last 30 games. The high scoring defenseman is having an off-year due to a slow start that had him picking up 11 points in his first 29 games.

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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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