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The Week Ahead

Yahoo! Playoff Stretch Drive

by Michael Finewax
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:09 pm ET

 

The playoffs get underway in Yahoo! pools this week so here is each team's games the rest of the way.

 

Anaheim - 14 (3,3,4,4)

Boston - 15 (4,4,3,4)

Buffalo - 14 (3,3,4,4)

Calgary - 14 (3,4,3,4)

Carolina - 14 (3,3,4,4)

Chicago - 14 (4,4,3,3)

Colorado - 14 (4,3,4,3)

Columbus - 14 (3,3,4,4)

Dallas - 14 (3,4,4,3)

Detroit - 15 (4,4,3,4)

Edmonton -13 (3,3,4,3)

Florida - 14 (4,3,4,3)

Los Angeles - 14 (3,4,4,3)

Minnesota - 15 (5,3,3,4)

Montreal - 13 (3,4,3,3)

Nashville - 14 (4,4,2,4)

New Jersey - 14 (4,2,4,4)

NY Islanders - 13 (2,3,4,4)

NY Rangers - 13 (3,4,3,3)

Ottawa - 15 (3,4,4,4)

Philadelphia - 15 (3,4,4,4)

Phoenix -  14 (3,4,3,4)

Pittsburgh - 15 (4,4,4,3)

San Jose - 13 (3,4,3,3)

St. Louis - 15 (4,3,4,4)

Tampa Bay -  15 (4,4,3,4)

Toronto - 13 (4,3,3,3)

Vancouver - 12 (3,3,2,4)

Washington - 13 (3,3,3,4)

Winnipeg - 13 (3,3,4,3)

 

I was on the Google+Hangout on Thursday with Matt Cubeta, Pete Jensen, Brian Metzer and Justin Goldman, all of the NHL.com. Click here to watch.

 

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 MARCH 17-23

 

5 Games - Minnesota

 

4 Games- Boston, Chicago, Columbus, Detroit, Florida, Nashville, New Jersey, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Toronto

 

3 Games– Anaheim, Buffalo, Calgary, Carolina, Colorado, Dallas, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Montreal, New York Rangers, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Jose, Vancouver, Washington, Winnipeg

 

2 Games - New York Islanders

 

Florida, Minnesota and Nashville play four games on the road.

 

New Jersey plays all four games at home.

 

Chicago, Detroit, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and San Jose play three games at home.

 

Boston, Buffalo, St. Louis, Tampa Bay and Washington play three games on the road.

 

INJURIES

 

Rich Peverley (heart) is out for the season and possibly his career but the good news is that he is alive after collapsing at the bench Monday. (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 Friday's NHL games. It's $10 to join and first prize is $350. Starts Friday at 7pm ET. Here's the FanDuel link.

 

ANAHEIM

 

Games this week

vs. Washington, @ San Jose, vs. Florida

 

Rested team: vs. Florida (Sunday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Ducks have been slumping of late and have allowed St. Louis to pass them in the Western Conference standings and have San Jose come to within two points in the Pacific as they are 3-5-2 in their last 10 games. They were particularly poor on Wednesday as Jonas Hiller gave up three goals on only five shots before being pulled as the Ducks dropped a 7-2 decision to lowly Calgary. Ryan Getzlaf has three goals and eight points in his last 10 games but has not found the back of the net in his last six. The Ducks sent Rickard Rakell has been sent to Norfolk of the AHL as he had only one point in nine NHL games. Look for Stephane Robidas to make his Anaheim debut on March 18.

 

BOSTON

 

Games this week

vs. Minnesota, @ New Jersey, @ Colorado, @ Phoenix

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ New Jersey (Tuesday) @ Phoenix (Saturday)

 

Notes

The Bruins play four games this week but not three games in four nights. Nevertheless, look for Chad Johnson to play at least once in place of Tuukka Rask. Zdeno Chara has 15 goals this season but only 14 assists. There are not too many times that you see a defenseman with more goals than assists. Dougie Hamilton is struggling this season and was a healthy scratch for the second game in a row on Wednesday. He likely could use some time in the minors to gain some confidence and playing time but that is unlikely. Daniel Paille could be back as early as March 15 from a concussion he suffered on Sunday. Jarome Iginla scored his 20th goal of the season on Sunday and he moved into 26th all-time as it was also his 550th goal of his career. 

 

BUFFALO

 

Games this week

@ Calgary, @ Edmonton, @ Vancouver

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team:  None

 

Notes

The Sabres are in Western Canada all week. Chris Stewart is out four-five weeks with an ankle injury and is likely out for the season, although it's possible that he will return for the final game of the season. He only played twice for the Sabres after being part of the Ryan Miller trade. Drew Stafford now is the longest serving Sabre on the current roster, replacing the traded Ryan Miller. Stafford is playing with Tyler Ennis and Cory Conacher. Jhonas Enroth and Michal Neuvirth will likely split the net the rest of the season.

 

CALGARY

 

Games this week

vs. Buffalo, vs. Nashville, @ Edmonton

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Edmonton (Saturday)

 

Notes

Joni Ortio has started the last five games in a row as the Flames are giving him every opportunity to grab the net, especially with the injury to Karri Ramo. He is 3-2 in this stretch, giving up 11 goals on 116 shots as the Flames are certainly cutting down giving their opponents shots on net. Curtis Glencross played on Wednesday for the first time since December 21 with an ankle injury. He was held off the scoresheet despite the Flames putting seven goals past Anaheim goaltenders. Brian McGrattan has three goals this season with two coming in back-to-back games this past week.

 

CAROLINA

 

Games this week

@ Columbus, @ Chicago, vs. Winnipeg

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: vs. Winnipeg (Saturday)

 

Notes

Look for the Hurricanes to give Cam Ward another shot to regain the net as Anton Khudobin has slowed down after a great start. The Hurricanes have a good top-six as Jordan Staal is centering Alexander Semin and Jiri Tlusty while brother Eric is centering rookie Elias Lindholm and Jeff Skinner. J. Staal has three goals and seven points in his last four games. Skinner has 26 goals and 44 points in 55 games but loses fantasy value with his minus-13 rating. Andrej Sekera has been a fantasy force on the blueline with 11 goals and 41 points with a plus-seven rating and 14 power play points.

 

CHICAGO

 

Games this week

@ Philadelphia, vs. St. Louis, vs. Carolina, vs. Nashville

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: vs. St. Louis (Wednesday)

 

Notes

The Blackhawks play four games including three times in four nights so look for Antti Raanta to play at least once in place of Corey Crawford. With Marian Hossa out of action, Ben Smith has been getting some power play time. Look for Hossa (upper body) to return to action this week. Brandon Saad has been a revelation this season with 44 points and a plus-29 rating in 66 games. Sheldon Brookbank was used as a forward on Wednesday, alongside Bryan Bickell and Kris Versteeg but don't look for Brookbank to pick up any fantasy stats.

 

COLORADO

 

Games this week

@ Montreal, @ Winnipeg, vs. Boston

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Winnipeg (Wednesday)

 

Notes

The Avalanche play three times in four days this week so look for Jean-Sebastien Giguere to play once this week in place of Semyon Varlamov. P. A. Parenteau suffered a medial collateral ligament injury and is expected to miss the remainder of the regular season. Jamie McGinn will get the first shot at taking over his spot on the top line with Ryan O'Reilly and Matt Duchene. Giguere is looking to retire at the end of the season so the Avs are looking to re-sign Reto Berra who they picked up from Calgary at the trade deadline. The Avs have passed the Blackhawks in the Western Conference standings.

 

COLUMBUS

 

Games this week

vs. Carolina, @ Montreal, vs. New York Rangers, @ New York Islanders

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: vs. New York Rangers (Friday)

 

Notes

The Blue Jackets play four times this week including three games in four nights so look for Curtis McElhinney to play once for Sergei Bobrovsky.  Cam Atkinson was a healthy scratch for the last three games but he could return to the lineup as Blake Comeau was suspended for a couple of games because he boarded Brendan Smith of the Red Wings. Boone Jenner has 12 goals but four have been game winners. Nathan Horton has not scored in the last 15 games. It's not a surprise as most players who have off-season surgery and miss at least half a season, need the rest of the season and the following off-season to return to form.

 

DALLAS

 

Games this week

@ Pittsburgh, @ Philadelphia, vs. Ottawa

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The big story in the NHL this past week was a tough one for the Stars as Rich Peverley, who has had heart problems since training camp, collapsed at the bench after a shift as he had a cardiac event. Doctors quickly worked on him and revived him but the rest of the players were too distraught and the game was postponed with only 6:23 minutes gone in the first period. Alex Chiasson missed Tuesday's game as he was too upset and shaken up to travel with the team. Peverley was released from hospital on Wednesday night but will not be able to return this season as he will need a medical procedure. Kari Lehtonen skated before practice on Thursday as he has been out since March 8 with a concussion. 

 

DETROIT

 

Games this week

vs. Toronto, vs. Pittsburgh, @ Minnesota, vs. Minnesota

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Red Wings play four games this week and also play three games in four nights so look for Jimmy Howard to play three times with Jonas Gustavsson playing once if he has recovered from his groin injury. If not, then look to Petr Mrazek to get the other start. The Red Wings play a home-and-home series against the Wild and if there are fisticuffs, expect to see Kyle Quincey to get involved. Tomas Jurco is out at least 10-14 days with a rib injury, so the injury-depleted Red Wings recalled Teemu Pulkkinen from the minors. Joakim Andersson is out for a couple of weeks with a broken foot. Daniel Alfredsson has not found the back of the net since the Olympic break, a span of seven games.

 

EDMONTON

 

Games this week

vs. Nashville, vs. Buffalo, vs. Calgary

 

Rested team: vs. Calgary (Saturday)

Tired Team: None  

 

Notes

Sam Gagner has been hot of late with a five game scoring streak in which he has a goal and six assists. Jordan Eberle has two goals and five points in five games to give him 21 goals and 50 points. His minus-11 rating and lack of penalty minutes (18) lessen his fantasy value in traditional pools. The Oilers recalled former first round pick Oscar Klefbom from the minors. He is a solid defenseman and will be a cornerstone of the Oilers blueline for many years to come, although his fantasy value will be negligible at best.

 

FLORIDA

 

Games this week

@ San Jose, @ Phoenix, @ Los Angeles, @ Anaheim  

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Anaheim (Sunday)

 

Notes

The Panthers play three games in four nights as part of their four game road trip out west so expect to see Dan Ellis play once for Roberto Luongo. Sean Bergenheim is out with a lower body injury. Brandon Pirri is someone to watch, especially next season as the Panthers acquired him from the Blackhawks at the deadline. Erik Gudbranson is also out of action as he suffered a knee injury that will keep him on the sidelines for more than a week. Nick Bjugstad has 14 goals and 30 points this season in 60 games but has a goal and seven points in eight games since the Olympic break as he has taken over Aleksander Barkov's spot at center.

 

LOS ANGELES

 

Games this week

vs. Phoenix, vs. Washington, vs. Florida

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Robyn Regehr has been a pleasant surprise of late as he had two goals, four points and a plus-nine rating during the Kings current eight game winning streak heading into action on Thursday. He has only three goals and 12 points all season so this streak has come out of the blue. Alec Martinez is on a five game points streak going into Thursday's game against Toronto as he has scored three times and has added a couple of assists. He has seven goals and 12 points in 45 games with a plus-10 rating. Jordan Nolan was suspended for one game as he sucker punched an unsuspecting Jesse Joensuu of the Oilers.

 

MINNESOTA

 

Games this week

@ Boston, @ New York Islanders, @ New Jersey, vs. Detroit, @ Detroit

 

Rested Team: None

Tired Team: @ New York Islanders (Tuesday)

 

Notes

The Wild play five times this week. They are the second and final team to do so this season as the Bruins did it earlier in the year. Look for Darcy Kuemper and Ilya Bryzgalov to get a couple of starts each with the better netminder getting the extra game. Minnesota takes on the Detroit Red Wings in a home-and-home series on the weekend so expect to see Cody McCormick and Clayton Stoner add to their penalty minute totals if there are any fisticuffs. It's nice to see that Josh Harding (multiple sclerosis) is back skating as he needed adjustments made to his medications. He has not been between the pipes since December 31 and it is doubtful he will see any action during the regular season.

 

MONTREAL

           

Games this week

vs. Colorado, vs. Columbus, @ Toronto

 

 Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Canadiens have been reeling of late as they certainly miss goaltender Carey Price who has yet to play since returning from Sochi after winning the Gold medal for Canada. Price suffered a lower body injury and could return as early as March 15. Thomas Vanek had an assist on Wednesday and it was his first point in three games since his trade from the Islanders. He only played one shift and 37 seconds Wednesday after the 10:25 mark of the third so keep an eye on that. Josh Gorges underwent surgery to repair a broken hand and is expected to be out for four weeks. Rene Bourque has only two goals and five points in his last 30 games and was a healthy scratch on Wednesday.

 

NASHVILLE

 

Games this week

@ Edmonton, @ Vancouver, @ Calgary, @ Chicago

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Vancouver (Wednesday)

 

Notes

The Predators play four times this week including three games in four nights so look for Carter Hutton to play at least once for the returning Pekka Rinne. The Predators play all four on the road so it will be seven of the past eight games away from home. Rinne picked up his first win Monday since returning to action four games ago and that has to help his fantasy owners. Gabriel Bourque is in a serious slump with only one assist in his last 12 games while he has not found the back of the net since December 21. Hard shooting defenseman Shea Weber scored his 16th of the season.

 

NEW JERSEY

 

Games this week

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

 

Rested team: vs. New York Rangers (Friday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Devils play all four at home this week and that is a rare  occurrence. New Jersey plays three games in four nights as well so Martin Brodeur should see the net at least once for Cory Schneider. Jaromir Jagr scored his 20th of the season becoming only the fifth player in NHL history to score at least 20 goals in 18 seasons. Too bad he played three seasons in the KHL or a lot more records would be his. Adam Henrique was the third star of the week after scoring five times last week. Damien Brunner finally scored for the first time in 12 games last Saturday.

 

NEW YORK ISLANDERS

 

Games this week

vs. Minnesota, vs. Columbus

 

Rested team: vs. Minnesota (Tuesday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The New York Islanders only play twice this week so if you are in a weekly transaction pool, then I suggest benching all your Islanders with the exception of Kyle Okposo and possibly Anders Lee who has five goals and seven points in seven games. Lee has moved up to the top line with Okposo and Frans Nielsen so I would recommend taking him as the NHL heads into the stretch. Michael Grabner is out indefinitely with a concussion. Cal Clutterbuck has been a disappointment offensively this season with only eight goals and 15 points in 61 games.

 

NEW YORK RANGERS

 

Games this week

@ Ottawa, @ Columbus, @ New Jersey

 

Rested team: @ Columbus (Friday)

Tired Team: @ New Jersey (Saturday)

 

Notes

Ryan McDonagh has three goals and six points in his last six games. Martin St. Louis has only one assist since he was acquired from Tampa Bay and is now he is playing alongside Derek Stepan and Rick Nash. Stepan's six game scoring streak ended on Tuesday but he scored the Rangers only goal on Thursday so perhaps he's ready to start a new streak. It looks like coach Alain Vigneault not using Derek Dorsett a lot as he is playing only on occasion while Daniel Carcillo is seeing more action as he has been a healthy scratch only once since the break.  The Rangers inked undrafted college star Ryan Haggerty to an entry level deal.

 

OTTAWA     

 

Games this week

vs. New York Rangers, vs. Tampa Bay, @ Dallas

 

Rested team: vs. Tampa Bay (Thursday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Mika Zibanejad has not scored since January 25 but he managed to set an Ottawa Senators record during the skills competition when his slapshot hit 106 miles per hour. Clarke MacArthur has missed the last two games with a hand injury but hopes to return on March 15. Craig Anderson suffered a 'stinger' on Monday when he took a slapshot off his shoulder from Shea Weber. Consider him day-to-day for now. Ales Hemsky had back-to-back three assist games as he is playing with Jason Spezza after his trade from Edmonton. Jared Cowen showed some offensive flair with a goal in two straight games after he was a healthy scratch in three consecutive games.

 

PHILADELPHIA

 

Games this week

vs. Chicago, vs. Dallas, vs. St. Louis

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Flyers are just inside the playoffs but have New Jersey, Washington and Detroit right on their heels so it should be quite interesting in the City of Brotherly Love heading down the stretch. Nicklas Grossmann scored this past week for only the fourth time in his eight year NHL career.  Kimmo Timonen is not sure as to whether or not he will play next season but he managed to score twice against the Maple Leafs to give him four goals this season. Ray Emery is day-to-day with a groin injury but he has not been fantasy relevant this season with a 7-9-1 record to go with a 3.03 GAA and a .898 save percentage after going 17-1 with Chicago last season.

 

PHOENIX

 

Games this week

@ Los Angeles, vs. Florida, vs. Boston

 

Rested team: vs. Boston (Saturday)

Tired Team: None           

 

Notes

Brandon Gormley made his NHL debut this past week and played twice before being named a healthy scratch on Thursday. The 13th overall pick in 2010, Gormley had 32 points in 48 games with Portland of the AHL this season. Martin Hanzal has sat out the last six games with a lower body injury. He is having his best offensive season of his NHL career with 15 goals and 37 points in only 55 games. He is the Coyotes best all-round forward but his brittleness hurts his fantasy value as he hasn't played in anything close to a full season since 2009-10. Mike Smith seems to be getting his mojo back as he has given up only 11 goals in 165 shots while going 4-2 in his last six games.

 

PITTSBURGH

 

Games this week

vs. Dallas, @ Detroit, vs. Tampa Bay. vs. St. Louis

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Penguins play four games this week including three in four days so expect to see Jeff Zatkoff play once in place of Marc-Andre FleuryLee Stempniak has received the dream job as he is playing the wing on a line with Sidney Crosby and Chris Kunitz. Olli Maatta certainly deserves to be considered for the Calder as he has been exceptionally good most of the season. He has six goals in his last 18 games, not too shabby for a defenseman.  Tomas Vokoun has been practicing for almost three weeks but was unable to on Sunday as he tries to return from blood clots in his pelvis that have sidelined him all season.

 

ST. LOUIS

 

Games this week

 vs. Winnipeg, @ Chicago, @ Philadelphia, @ Pittsburgh

 

Rested team: vs. Winnipeg (Monday), @ Chicago (Wednesday)

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Blues play four times including three in four nights this week so it looks like Brian Elliott will see action in one game as Ryan Miller should play in the other three. Vladimir Sobotka had a three point night with 12 penalty minutes Thursday as he returned to action after being out since January 31st with a knee injury. The Blues have taken over the number one spot in the West. Alex Pietrangelo has goals in each of his last two games and now has eight on the season to go with 37 assists and a plus-20 rating.

 

SAN JOSE

 

Games this week

vs. Florida, vs. Anaheim, vs. Washington

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

Raffi Torres has five points in five games this season but has been a healthy scratch over the last two games as coach Todd McLellan wants him to rest and manage his playing time. This should get him ready for the playoffs. The Sharks are now in the race for top spot in the Pacific division as they are now tied with the Ducks, although Anaheim does have a game in hand. Joe Thornton has 55 assists in 67 games but only has nine goals. Tommy Wingels has five goals and eight points in his last 10 games with a plus-four rating.

 

TAMPA BAY

 

Games this week

vs. Vancouver, @ Toronto, @ Ottawa, @ Pittsburgh

 

Rested team: vs. Vancouver (Monday), @ Toronto (Wednesday)

Tired Team: @ Ottawa (Thursday)

 

Notes

The Lightning play four games this week including three games in four nights. Anders Lindback should play once in place of Ben Bishop. Steve Stamkos finally got back on the scoresheet Thursday with a goal and an assist. Ryan Malone is not at all happy as he has been a healthy scratch in each of the Lightning's last four games. He has five goals and 12 points in 46 games with a minus-five rating. Radko Gudas returned to action on Thursday after missing four games with a lower body injury. He has two goals and 16 points in 57 games with 124 penalty minutes.

 

TORONTO

 

Games this week

@ Detroit, vs. Tampa Bay, vs. Montreal, @ New Jersey

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: vs. Tampa Bay (Wednesday)

 

Notes

The Maple Leafs play four times this week so James Reimer should play at least once. He may play more than that as Jonathan Bernier suffered a lower body injury on Thursday and his status is unknown at this time. Reimer was outstanding in relief of Bernier on Thursday as he stopped all 31 shots after giving up six on 48 shots in a loss to San Jose Tuesday. Paul Ranger is finally looking like he did in the 2009-10 season with Tampa Bay and that's good news for the Toronto blueline. Phil Kessel is pointless in his last two games but is third in goals with 34, second in points with 73 and has the second most shots in the NHL with 256.

 

VANCOUVER

 

Games this week

@ Tampa Bay, vs. Nashville, vs. Buffalo

 

Rested team: vs. Nashville (Wednesday)

Tired Team: @ Tampa Bay (Monday)

 

Notes

Ryan Kesler suffered a knee injury and the Canucks are hoping that he can return for the Nashville game. Alex Burrows finally scored his first two goals of the season on Wednesday after going the first 35 games without finding the back of the net. Henrik Sedin played his 1,000th game on Wednesday in Winnipeg. His twin brother Daniel is still not close to returning to action after he suffered a hamstring injury as coach John Tortorella said he was 'weeks' away from playing. With the Canucks still out of a playoff spot and having played  the most games heading into this week, he could be done for the season.

 

WASHINGTON

 

Games this week

@ Anaheim, @ Los Angeles, @ San Jose

 

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

 

Notes

The Capitals play all three games in sunny California as they get out of the cold that has plagued the Eastern seaboard all winter. The Capitals had Evgeny Kuznetsov join them this past week and also inked fellow Russian Dmitry Orlov to a two-year extension. Kuznetsov has played two games and is minus-one but you have to give him some time to adjust to the North American game and the lifestyle here. Mikhail Grabovski was placed on the injured reserve list as he injured his ankle during the first game back from the Olympic break. There is currently no timetable for his return.

 

WINNIPEG

 

Games this week

@ St. Louis. vs. Colorado, vs. Carolina

 

Rested team: vs. Colorado (Wednesday), vs. Carolina (Saturday)

Tired Team: @ St. Louis (Monday)

 

Notes

The Winnipeg Jets have two goalies. One, Ondrej Pavelec is 20-24-4 with a 2.95 GAA and a .903 save percentage, while the other, Al Montoya is 10-4-3 with a .926 save percentage and a 2.17 GAA. I don't understand why Montoya doesn't get more starts. Dustin Byfuglien is minus-17 and that takes away from his good offensive stats of 16 goals and 32 assists. He also has 22 points on the power play. The Jets have killed off 39 straight power plays on the road and have not allowed a power play goal on the road since January 21. The Jets dressing room has a sizeable hole in it after Mark Scheifele was injured according to coach Paul Maurice. Scheifele is someone to keep your eye on next season.

Michael Finewax

Michael Finewax is entering his 16th season as the Senior Hockey Writer and Editor for Rotoworld. You can follow him on Twitter @mfinewaxhockey.