Games Played This Week By Team
4 Games: CGY, CAR, CHI, MIN
3 Games: CBJ, VAN, WSH, WPG
2 Games: ARI, BUF, DET, FLA, NYR, OTT, PIT, TB, TOR,
1 Game: ANA, BOS, COL, DAL, LA, MTL, NSH, NJ, NYI, PHI, SJ, STL, VGK
As you can tell, this is the first week where teams have byes. Thirteen teams will have one game this week, and nine teams have two. That’s 70% of the league. This is why streaming players is vital. Every owner is going to struggle with this. All five of these players have four games this week. Even though there may be better players out there, the number of games is more important to help owners win their matchups this week.
Vinnie Hinostroza – C/LW – Chicago Blackhawks
14% Owned on Fantrax
Vinnie Hinostroza would have been included here even if this week weren’t unique. He had two goals and three assists in three games last week, including two multi-point games. Since being called up, Hinostroza has three goals and eight points in 10 games with 24 shots on goal. He is on the first line with Jonathan Toews and Brandon Saad. He is also on the second power-play unit. However, he is getting just an average of 12 minutes of ice-time. His time is sure to increase if he can stay on the Toews and Saad line and continue to produce. Hinostroza was called up to spark something on the offense, and it has seemed to work since he had 22 points in 23 games in the AHL. With Nick Schmaltz, Ryan Hartman, and Alex DeBrincat also contributing this season, it seems that Chicago is embracing youth, something they have to do considering their salary-cap situation. But this is ultimately a good thing. It’s unclear how sustainable Hinostroza’s production is, but he is still a good addition to rosters, especially this week.
Elias Lindholm – C/RW – Carolina Hurricanes
60% Owned on Fantrax
Elias Lindholm has 11 goals and 23 points in 41 games this season. He is getting 18 minutes of ice-time as the right winger on the second line and is on the first power-play unit. He is averaging about 18 minutes of ice-time. Lindholm hasn’t scored in the last two games, but he did have 10 points in 15 games in December. Lindholm does have potential, as he was the fifth overall pick in the 2015 draft. However, this is his fifth season in the league, and he has never gotten past the 50-point threshold. Of course, that could change if he has a strong second half. Right now, he’s on pace for 46 points, so it’s not impossible. There are also some encouraging signs. For one, he had 11 goals the past two seasons, and that’s his goal total right now halfway through the season. He also is shooting more, with 79 shots on goal. That is 1.9 shots per game, which is more than the usual for him. If Lindholm is not available this week, Jaccob Slavin (52% owned) or Derek Ryan (21% owned) are good options for Carolina. That said, be careful with Carolina skaters, as their goaltending has not been ideal, meaning their +/- ratings may take a hit.
Mikael Backlund – C – Calgary Flames
62% Owned on Fantrax
The Calgary Flames are one of the most exciting teams in the NHL thanks in part to Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan, and Matt Tkachuk. However, it seems like Mikael Backlund doesn’t get a ton of attention. Currently, Backlund has 17 assists and 25 points in 41 games. He did have just one assist in two games last week, which isn’t great, but he is still fourth in points on the team. Backlund is the second line center on a line with Matt Tkachuk and Troy Brouwer. He also gets power-play time on the first unit with about 19 minutes average of total ice-time. Backlund is even more valuable in leagues that count faceoffs wins, as he is one of the most consistent two-way forwards in the league. This year he has a 48 faceoff percentage, which is the same faceoff percentage he has had in the last three seasons. Backlund is another player that might be worth keeping around after this week is over.
Charlie Coyle – C/RW – Minnesota Wild
68% Owned on Fantrax
Coyle has 17 points in 26 games on the season, which is .65 points per game. He really picked it up last week, scoring two goals with an assist in three games with seven shots. However, despite having 17 minutes of ice-time this season, Coyle has pretty bad deployment right now. He is on the third line center and isn’t even on any power-play unit. Like Backlund, Coyle has been really good at faceoffs. Even better, in fact, as he has won 121 faceoffs and has a 55% percentage. He’s averaged 15 minutes and 33 seconds the last three games. But based on Coyle’s week, it might not matter what line he is on. No power-play time is still concerning, though. But considering the Wild have two back-to-backs this week, depth at the forward spot is important, as the top line guys will likely be more tired. Coyle can be inconsistent, but the last week was encouraging.
Zach Parise – LW – Minnesota Wild
62% Owned on Fantrax
Parise started his season last week and had only one assist in the last three games to show for it. But Parise is one of the better forwards for Minnesota when healthy. It seems like he is just getting his bearings. Parise is currently on the third line as the left winger and is getting time on the power-play time as well. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him get moved up in the lineup in the next couple of games or so. Parise had 42 points in 69 games last season, which is .60 points per game. Because of Parise’s name recognition, he may already be owned in your league, but grab him if he’s available.
This is where we take a look at the performances of the players I mentioned in last week’s article. Knowing when to drop your streamers is just as important as knowing when to add them. The following guys should be kept in all keeper and dynasty formats unless stated otherwise.
James Reimer – Reimer didn’t have a great week, to say the least. He gave up three goals on Tuesday, and he gave up four goals on Friday. As mentioned, Reimer can be shaky, and these past two weeks are proof of the highs and lows. Because of this inconsistency, Reimer is untrustworthy. Unless Luongo is on your IR and you need the starts, Reimer can be dropped.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins – Nugent-Hopkins is still the second line center, but he had only one assist in the four games last week. This may have more to do with the Oilers struggling than anything. Nugent-Hopkins can still be kept, but be aware of his deployment because that could change.
Nick Schmaltz – Schmaltz had as great of a week as Hinostroza did. He had three goals and one assist in three games. A lot of the young guys are getting more opportunities to shine in Chicago. Schmaltz should be kept until this hot streak is over.
Calle Jarnkrok – Despite Filip Forsberg being out, it appears that Jarnkrok wasn’t able to capitalize on his absence. Although Jarnkrok got an assist in the last game, he was put on the fourth line, according to Daily Faceoff. That assist was the only point he had in last week. Because of his deployment, Jarnkrok can be dropped.
Mattias Janmark – Janmark had a really good week. It seems like he is really figuring things out. He had two goals and one assist in three games last week. Janmark now has seven points in his last eight games. He is worth a roster spot for another week.