McDavid nears 100, Matthews hits 40, Carter scores 4 (May 7) – DobberHockey
So… quite a Capitals-Rangers game Wednesday night. Next season’s rematch is expected to be highly anticipated. Whether you like it or not, it has definitely grabbed your attention.
No wonder the Rangers were fined $ 250,000 for their statement regarding Tom Wilson and George Parros. While there is no need to publicly call for someone to be fired from their job, the NHL has decided that words should be punished much more heavily than acts of violence (think of the 5,000 fine. $ by Tom Wilson). Perhaps this is the case because a large company can absorb a much higher fine than an individual? Don’t feel too sorry for Wilson, because $ 5,000 for him is your fantasy league dues.
Isolated, Pavel Buchnevich deserves his one-match suspension for crushing Anthony Mantha in the face. However, we all saw how violent this game was and the Rangers were focused on retribution. I’m willing to bet that the Buchnevich incident would never have happened had Wilson been given proper discipline, but I guess the league weren’t too concerned with what would happen next after they didn’t suspend Wilson. And no, a choke slam is not a game of hockey, even though Panarin faced Wilson.
Buchnevich served his suspension in Thursday’s game against Boston. Without Buchnevich, Artemi Panarin, or Chris Kreider, the Rangers’ line combinations looked like this:
RYAN STROME – JONNY BRODZINSKI – KAAPO KAKKO
PHILLIP DI GIUSEPPE – KEVIN ROONEY – MORGAN BARRON
MIKA ZIBANEJAD – COLIN BLACKWELL – VITALI KRAVTSOV
FILIP CHYTIL – TIM GETTINGER – ALEXIS LAFRENIERE
If this version of the Rangers looked watered down, it really couldn’t generate anything against the Bruins on Thursday. Jeremy Swayman had a relatively easy time, stopping all 15 shots he faced in a 4-0 shutout. Swayman has looked just fantastic during his brief time in the NHL. His shutout is his second in nine games, eight of which are quality starts. Among goaltenders who have played at least as many games as he has, Swayman has the highest goals against average (1.44) and save percentage (.946). Still, the Bruins will likely start the playoffs with Tuukka Rask as a starter and Jaroslav Halak falling back as usual.
After two wins to start his NHL career, the underdog Michael Houser received a dose of reality on Thursday. The Sabers’ fourth-string goalie (or is it now fifth-string?) Gave up eight goals to the Penguins. Just when you thought it was safe to add a Buffalo goalie. Here’s how quickly the numbers of goalkeepers can change:
With the loss, the Sabers are now guaranteed to finish last in the NHL for the fourth time in eight seasons. It’s a whole lot of futility.
It wasn’t Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin or Kris Letang who did the most damage against the Sabers. Instead, it was newly acquired Jeff Carter, who scored four goals. I thought Carter would lose some value with a Malkin comeback after an injury. However, Carter makes the most of a solid third row with Jared McCann and Frederick Gaudreau. McCann finished the game with one goal and two assists, while Gaudreau had three assists. Carter and McCann are expected to be solid streamers for Saturday’s rematch with the Sabers.
If these two aren’t available, there are still a few more penguins to choose from. Kasperi Kapanen had one goal and one assist on Thursday, giving him seven points in his last six games. Additionally, Jason Zucker added two assists on Thursday, giving him five points in his last five games. Zucker in particular might be the easiest to find as he’s only registered at 10% in Yahoo leagues. It is also deployed on the Malkin line.
If you decide to start Mikko Koskinen due to a juicy home game with the Canucks, you may need to say goodbye to your weekly H2H ratios. Koskinen allowed four goals on four shots in the first period. Yes, not a single backup which resulted in the rare backup percentage of .000. This is probably how you felt when you saw it:
Mike Smith settled things by allowing just two goals on 23 shots. The Oilers also responded with two goals before the end of the first period, which felt like this game could come close in the end, although it didn’t (Canucks win 6-3).
Connor McDavid Leads Update 100: He threw three more assists, giving him 96 points with four games to go. The 100 point mark definitely seems within reach now. I had my doubts a few weeks ago, but he’s been a nuclear weapon for fantastic teams in his last 10 games, scoring 27 points! He also has several points in nine of those ten games. No matter the point per game, it’s almost point per period at this point.
Of course, stacking McDavid with Leon Draisaitl led to this insane exit. Draisaitl scored two goals but did not register any assists. So no Draisaitl hat tricks for McDavid or Draisaitl, which is a shame as they both had the minus-1. Eric, can we call more points (whether goals or assists) with a minus-1 a modified Draisaitl hat trick?
There was a hat trick of a different kind on Thursday: Travis Hamonic recorded a Gordie Howe hat trick with a goal, an assist and a fight with Alex Chiasson. The goal was Hamonic’s first in 30 games as Canuck, so don’t count on him for an offense. From a pure hockey watching standpoint, I like what I saw recently of Hamonic, for what it’s worth.
Brock Boeser and Nils Hoglander each scored a goal and added an assist in the Canucks’ victory. Hoglander is a decent streamer option not only because of the Canucks’ remaining game volume, but also because he plays on the front row with Boeser and JT Miller. Hoglander makes the most of the opportunity with four points in his last three games, as well as nine shots in his last two games. In a season that is far more negative than positive for the Canucks, Hoglander has been a bright spot with his endless commotion. With 24 points in 48 games, the rookie would be on track for 40 points over a full season.
Just as McDavid’s point total looks like a normal 82-game season, so too is Auston Matthews’ goal total. The Leaf has shot down his 40e goal of the season in just 49e Game. With only three games to go, 50 goals seem out of reach. But Matthews, who has scored goals in five straight games, is sure to try. In his last nine games, Matthews has taken at least four shots per game, averaging over five shots per game during that span. Unsurprisingly, Matthews is the league’s shooting leader with 210 SOG.
Cole Caufield scored again on Thursday, giving him three goals in his last four games. In addition, he had five shots, which is the highest total in his career of seven games in the NHL.
In my relentless effort to find streamers in the right position to fill my maximum total games played in my roto league, I noticed Tomas Tatar returned to the Canadiens lineup on Thursday. Tatar was not worth activating, as he had been held pointless with a minus-3.
A player inside, another outside for the Habs. Phillip Danault left Thursday’s game with an upper body injury.
Dobber mentioned this one in a tweet, but in case you missed it, Anthony Beauvillier has 20 points in his last 23 games. A total of 13 of those points are goals, including five goals in his last five games. Remember he scored nine goals in 22 playoff games last season, so he seems to be warming up at the right time for the Islanders.
With another goal on Thursday, Pavel Zacha now has six goals and nine points from his last seven games.
I haven’t been fantasy lover of the Sharks this season. However, here are two potential San Jose streamers who are almost guaranteed to be on your waiver thread, if you’re in some sort of league deep.
Traded by the Leafs to the Sharks at the deadline, Alexander Barabanov skated to a goal line alongside Evander Kane and Tomas Hertl. He has responded with six points in his last six games. No, I didn’t take him, because I need someone who’s heavy, and he only has seven hits in that time. Still, he could provide another point or two as the Sharks play back-to-back Friday and Saturday against Arizona. You are extremely likely to find Barabanov on your waiver thread because he is listed in only 1% of Yahoo leagues.
If you’re struggling to find a goalkeeper, Josef Korenar might be worth considering. Remember that a spot opened up for him after Devan Dubnyk was traded to Colorado. Korenar has quality starts in each of his last three games, as well as a confirmed start against an offense in the Arizona Coyotes’ last 10. Korenar is registered in only 7% of Yahoo leagues.
One hockey topic that didn’t get enough discussion this week (possibly due to Rangers-Capitals shenanigans) was the Under-18 tournament which ended Thursday night with a Canadian gold medal. I’ll leave you with highlights from Connor Bedard and Shane Wright, both of whom received exceptional status to play in the CHL at the age of 15. Bedard and Wright both seem on the fast track to NHL stardom and a goalie league near you. .
For more fantasy hockey discussions or to contact me you can follow me on twitter @Ian_Gooding