Fantasy Hockey Lookahead: Targeting Week 16 Championship Streamers
We have reached the finish line.
It’s been a very unique year for fantasy, so if you’ve made it this far, hats off to you. This has not been easy.
While most of the one-on-one leagues have already handed out the material, the rest are deciding their champion this week.
The points and rotisserie leagues will likely end next Thursday or beyond, depending on league settings.
(Note that different fantasy websites have different rules regarding the end of the season. Some websites end their championship week this Saturday, omitting Sunday matches, while others continue until midweek. next. Check your settings before making a decision.)
Logistics aside, there is still at least a week of fantastic hockey to play. So, one last time, let’s analyze the upcoming weekly schedule and see where we can gain an advantage over our opponents.
Week 16 Notes
It’s a very balanced schedule this week, with the majority of teams playing four games. Only seven teams will play fewer times.
Nashville, Tampa Bay, Toronto and Winnipeg will all have three games. While the big losers for the week will be Calgary, Detroit and Florida, all with just two games apiece.
Florida has the least favorable opponents in the field. They will play the Stars on Monday before a four-day layoff. They will end their week against Andre Vasilevskiy and the Lightning on Saturday. It’s a team to be avoided.
Calgary will face Winnipeg on Wednesday and will not play again until Sunday. Obviously, the whole squad can be dropped after Wednesday’s game if Sunday’s game doesn’t count in your league.
Best teams to broadcast
The big winners this week are the Oilers, with four games against the Canucks. Vancouver is giving up the seventh most goals per game this season at 3.24. They have also given up 15 goals in their last three games.
The Islanders are also big winners, having played the Sabers twice and the Devils twice this week. New Jersey were the only team in April to give up more than four goals per game, while Buffalo was fourth in goals against per game during that span.
Every week the Avalanche doesn’t face the Golden Knights or the Wild, they have a favorable schedule. Apart from the big three, the West has been terrible this year. Colorado will face the Sharks and Kings twice each, with Los Angeles games back-to-back on Friday and Saturday. Both teams are in the last seven goals against per game since the start of April.
Pittsburgh is also having another extremely favorable week with two games each against the Flyers and Sabers, the two worst defensive teams this season.
W, Anthony Beauvillier, New York Islanders (28 percent enrolled, up 2 percent)
Beauvillier has scored five goals and eight points in his last six games and is enjoying the time on the best power play unit. The 2015 first-round pick was a popular contender heading into this year, but disappointed with just six points in his opening 22 games. He’s been a different player since then, with 11 goals and 17 points in the last 20 games. The Islanders get the Sabers and Devils twice this week. They have allowed the second and fourth most goals per game this season, respectively.
C, Jeff Carter, Pittsburgh Penguins (27 percent enrolled, up 8 percent)
Carter has fitted in very well since his trade to Pittsburgh on the deadline. The veteran forward has scored four goals and six points in his last eight games with the team. He’s skating on the second row with Jared McCann and Kasperi Kapanen and is on the second power play unit, which in all fairness doesn’t see much ice time. The question will be where Carter is moved with the return of Evgeni Malkin. Malkin has trained fully with the team and his return could be any day now. Despite this, Carter is worth a look wherever he finds himself on the high-flying Pens offense. They have scored the fourth most goals per game since Carter made his team debut on April 15.
W, Yegor Sharangovich, New Jersey Devils (11 percent enrolled, up 7 percent)
The Devils don’t score many goals and don’t have a good schedule, taking on the Bruins and Islanders twice a week, but what rookie Yegor Sharangovich is currently doing cannot be ignored. As of April 4, Sharangovich has been a point-per-game player with eight goals and eight assists in 16 games. The numbers look even better more recently, with six goals and 11 points in his last nine games. Sharangovich actually started the year in the KHL with Dinamo Minsk, where he scored 17 goals in just 34 games – a pace of 41 goals in an 82-game season. He plays on the first red line with Jack Hughes. He’s worth a look for the past week, and someone he’ll remember from the final draft rounds next season.
W, Joonas Donskoi, Colorado Avalanche (23 percent enrolled, up 3 percent)
Donskoi has just returned from a long absence due to COVID protocol, and although he has only had one assist in two games since returning, he sees time on the higher power play unit. Donskoi can get hot anytime if given the right opportunity. He had a two-week streak in March where he scored nine goals and 15 points in just 10 games. The Avs will face the Sharks and Kings twice this week, two big clashes.
W, Kailer Yamamoto, Edmonton Oilers (59 percent registered, down 4 percent)
Yamamoto has been streaked all season and we’ve probably all been burned by him in the past. But his production really depends on where he plays, and for now, he’s back on the front row playing alongside Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. It didn’t go well on Saturday and there’s a very good chance it won’t last, but every time he’s on that leading line he gets a chance to contribute. This is a situation worth picking up a flyer if it has been dropped in your league. McDavid and the Oilers are going to score a ton of goals this week, all four games being against the Canucks.