Sunday, October 18, 2009

Just Fantasy Hockey - Week 4 Forecaster

This week starts off surprisingly slow, especially coming from an NHL off day on Sunday Oct 18th. Week 4 starts with 3 games on Monday, followed by 6 games on Tuesday and 6 on Wednesday. Fantasy owners shouldn’t put themselves in a frenzy in weekly head-to-head leagues since everyone is in the same boat.

Columbus, Edmonton, L.A, San Jose and Vancouver play 4 games this week. Both the Sharks and the Blue Jackets are on the road for all four games. The Maple Leafs on the other hand, play once during this fantasy week and that is on a very busy Saturday tonight.

Nashville: Neither Rinne nor Ellis looked spectacular in the first three games last week, but we will see who has the upper hand with the Predators playing three road games in four nights.

Fantasy Spin: Upper hand seems to go to Rinne by default. Look for Rinne to get starts on Wed and Sat while Ellis on Thursday.

San Jose: With east coast tilts against the Rangers, Lightning, Thrashers and Flyers on the schedule this week, look for Thornton and company to post some pretty solid numbers.

Fantasy Spin: Look for back up Thomas Greiss to get the start against Atlanta on Saturday giving Nabokov his first rest of the season.

Los Angeles: The Kings look to have the easiest schedule of the week, but it might end up being a tough one. The week starts with home and home tilts against an improved Stars squad, followed by a tilt with Phoenix (who already beat them 6-3 earlier this year) and then flying to Columbus to play the next day.

Fantasy Spin: Kopitar and company started off strong, but have lost the last two. Play them, but don’t expect great numbers from the Kings this week.

Toronto: The Leafs play their lone game Saturday night in Vancouver. They should have plenty of time to prepare physically and mentally to try and get their first win of the season.

Fantasy Spin: The only real Leaf name that is worth something right now is Ponikarovsky(4pts in 6 games with a +4) and even he needs to be benched on any fantasy squad this week.

Washington: A slow week for the Capitals with two away games in Atlanta and Long Island, but that shouldn’t stop AO from keeping his 2 points a game pace.

Fantasy Spin: While Backstrom, Ovechkin, Semin and Green should put up decent numbers, the bigger story is in net for the Capitals. Varlamov will likely start both games and has a chance to distance himself from Theodore who is nursing a sore back. While no goalie controversy is ever cleared up in the first month or so, this may be Varlamov's last chance to put in his claim as the front runner.

Chicago: After 4 games last week, the Hawks play only two this week. Sharp is leading the pack in scoring, but Toews and Campbell have picked it up the last couple of games. With the 2 games spread out on Wednesday and Saturday, Huet “should” get both starts.

Fantasy spin: If Huet and Niemi split time this week, there is an unofficial goalie controversy in the windy city.

Edmonton: The Oilers play 4 times this week starting with two on the road against Vancouver and Columbus, then finishing up with two at home against Calgary and Vancouver.

Fantasy spin: The Bulin wall will get 3 starts and should post better than decent numbers this week. Edmonton's offence seems to be scoring by committee this year so no one jumps out for leagues that allow weekly roster changes. Opt for quality over quantity in this case.


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