Sunday, October 15, 2017

NHL 2017 Week 2 Fantasy Hockey Report

Here are some players to watch and players to avoid in your fantasy hockey league after 2 weeks of NHL.

Players to watch, all formats:

1) Anthony Mantha, Detroit: He’s got 7 PTS in 5 GP and is one of Yahoo’s 5 most added players. He needs to be owned in more than 44% of leagues. He’s worth considering even in standard leagues.

2) Dylan Larkin, Detroit: Call last year a sophomore slump, he’s scored a point in every Detroit game so far. He’s owned in 63% of leagues which is close to his optimal number, but there is room to grow if he continues scoring at this pace.

3) Will Butcher, New Jersey: I recently added him in a Yahoo standard league. He’s at 50% ownership with 8 PTS in 5 GP. That ownership will only keep getting higher unless the points dry up.

4) Olli Maatta, Pittsburgh: He’s got 6 PTS in 6 GP and is getting time on the mighty Penguins power play. He’s addable even in standard leagues and should have higher than 37% ownership.

5) Connor Hellebuyck, Winnipeg: He’s currently owned in 44% of leagues with 3 wins, a 2.11 GAA and .937 SV% in 4 GP. Until he cools down, he should be added in more leagues.

Going Deep, players to add in deeper leagues:

1) Malcom Subban, Vegas: Fleury is sidelined with a concussion and Subban was added in over 5000 Yahoo leagues today after beating his old team. That 11% ownership will only get higher the longer Fleury is out. I’m not sure he’s ready for prime time, but any goalie who gets regular starts needs to be owned in deep leagues.

2) Brock Nelson, Islanders: 4 PTS in 6 GP and 8% ownership. He’s in his prime with three consecutive 20 goal seasons. He’s borderline in a standard league, but should be owned in every league deeper than 12 teams.

3) Zemgus Girgensons, Buffalo: He’s got 3 PTS in 5 GP and is getting substantial playing time (including on the power play). He should probably be owned in more than 1% of leagues. He just got added tonight in my 18-team keeper league.

4) Alex Tuch, Vegas: He was finally called up to the NHL and scored 2 PTS with 4 shots and 3 hits in his first game. He’s in danger of being sent back to the minors simply because he doesn’t need to clear waivers, but if he’s going to get 13 minutes a night with power play time, he’s a solid addition to deep categories leagues.

5) Sven Andrighetto, Colorado: He’s got 6 PTS in 6 GP to continue his hot streak with the Avs from last season. He needs to be owned in more than 10% of leagues.

Buy low:

1) Oscar Klefbom, Edmonton: He might have zero PTS through 4 GP, but he’s still got 15 shots on goal. He should be owned in all leagues, but he’s shown up on Yahoo’s 10 most dropped players list.

2) Andre Burakovsky, Carolina: He’s being dropped in many Yahoo leagues and is down to 64% ownership. Only marginal value in standard leagues, but you may be able to get him at a cheap price in deeper leagues. He’ll pick up the pace eventually. There’s too much talent on that team.

3) Ryan O’Reilly, Buffalo: He needs to be owned in 100% of leagues that count face-off wins. He has started slow but eventually the points will come. Borderline ownable in standard leagues, but a must own in deeper leagues.

4) Nico Hischier, New Jersey: He’s being dropped in many leagues and is down to 45% ownership, close to teammate Jesper Bratt. I’d much rather have Hischier. I fully expect Hischier to be well above 45% by the end of the season. He may not be pilling up PTS yet, but by all accounts, looks dangerous out there.

5) Jakub Silfverberg, Anaheim: He’s got 1 point in his first 5 GP. Not a guy to target in shallow leagues, but you may be able to get him cheap in a deep league. He’s in Yahoo’s 5 most dropped players today.

Be concerned:

1) Joe Thornton, San Jose: Jumbo is officially old. His 44% ownership is way too high because of name recognition. He’s no longer the player he used to be.

2) Robin Lehner, Buffalo: If the Sabres continue to suck this bad, it could be a long season for anyone depending on Lehner. He’s owned in 64% of leagues and dropping. If you’re in a deep league and you need him to get starts, he’ll get lots of starts, face lots of shots, and let in lots of goals. Chad Johnson just beat the Ducks tonight, so he could soon be stealing starts.

3) Antti Raanta, Phoenix: He has not started his Arizona career very well and now he’s battling an “ailment”. Even if he gets healthy and gets on track, it looks like the Coyotes are going to suck bad. He’s owned in 39% of leagues and dropping. If he’s your only option in goal, you might be screwed.

4) Jesper Bratt, New Jersey: He has skyrocketed to 40% ownership over the course of a week. He’s been a great story but that number is way too high. He’s a must add in deep leagues, not so much in standard leagues. If you added him in a shallow league, you’ll probably be dropping him soon enough.

5) Jason Garrison, Vegas: He’s been a frequently added player this week because he started the season playing high minutes (most likely the team trying to boost his trade value) but he’s played fewer minutes in each game. Tonight, he’s a healthy scratch. If you’re one of the hundreds of people who added him last week, you’ll probably be one of the hundreds who drop him next week.

Click here to view my Week 1 Fantasy Hockey Report.

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