Sunday, December 13, 2009

Just Fantasy Hockey: Week 12 Forecaster

With half the league playing a busy 4 game week there are lots of choices in leagues that offer only weekly roster changes. Unfortunately the NHL schedule makers forgot about the San Jose Sharks by slating them for only 1 game, so Nabakov, Thornton and Heatley owners will have to work the waiver wire a bit more this week. Let’s look at the week ahead at some of the more promising match ups.

4 Game Week: Atlanta, Buffalo, Columbus, Detroit, Florida, Montreal, Nashville, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Phoenix, St. Louis, Toronto, Vancouver

3 Game Week: Anaheim, Boston, Calgary, Carolina, Chicago, Dallas, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Minnesota, New Jersey, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Washington

2 Game Week: Colorado

1 Game Week: San Jose

Vancouver: vs. Los Angeles, vs. Anaheim, vs. Washington, vs. St. Louis

Robert Luongo is 9-4-0 at home this year with a solid .922 SV% and 2.25 GAA. With 4 home games this week Luongo can be relied upon to post similar numbers. Also, the Canucks offence is second in the league in goals per game at home and fair well against some of the defences they are facing.

Fantasy Spin: The Sedin twins and Luongo are extremely solid plays in week-to-week leagues and are a definite must starts this week. Ryan Kesler has seen hits point total dip with the return of D. Sedin and should be considered as a number 3 fantasy center now.

Atlanta: @New York Rangers, @ Florida, vs. Dallas, vs. New Jersey

Atlanta has had one the most potent offences season and currently sit third in goals per game. The Thrashers offer one of the most balanced attacks in the NHL, as proven when when their number one point producer Kovalchuk, went down to injury. Until they show signs of slowing continue to dress your Thrashers.

Fantasy Spin: Kovalchuk continues to be a must play in standard hockey leagues, but in deeper leagues Peverly, Antropov and Afinogenov can be relied upon for consistent numbers.

Chicago: vs. St. Louis, vs. Boston, vs. Detroit.

The Blackhawks are tied with the Devils with a leagues best 2.14 GAA. With 3 home games against team in the bottom third in total offence, it is a perfect match-up for owners of Black Hawk goaltenders. Chicago continues to tinker with their offensive lines to try and find a second line center after Toews. Sharp looks to have developed some chemistry with Hossa and Eager on a line, something the Hawks have been looking for all season.

Fantasy Spin: With no back to back games this week Huet should get all 3 starts and should be started in any league this week. Toews, Keith and Hossa are solid plays this week even though they play only 3 games. Keep an eye out for an injury update on Kane as he went down in the game against the Lightning before your line-ups set.

Detroit: vs. Phoenix, vs. St. Louis, @Dallas, @ Chicago

Detroit has been hit by the injury bug all season and have tightened up defensively as a result. Allowing just 9 goals over their last 5 games, this veteran group of players are playing a defence first style of play to . Phoenix and St. Louis sit 28th and 29th in total offence and are great match-ups for Detroit early in the week.

Fantasy Spin: Jimmy Howard has allowed just 4 goals over his last 3 games and will likely get the majority of starts in net. Todd Bertuzzi has 4 goals in his last 2 games and may be worth a look in deeper leagues as he is hot right now.


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