Here it is – the Top 20 Fantasy Hockey Events of the past decade, as decided by yours truly along with your input.
Ryan Smyth – to return Saturday. Kopitar owners rejoice
Jordan Staal took a puck off the face last night and was bleeding profusely. He left the game, but was in practice with a full shield today.
Brian Boucher left last night’s contest with a laceration on his right ring finger and he received “more than a few” stitches according to philly.com. The team has recalled Johan Backlund from the AHL. Leighton will get the start tomorrow and I would expect Boucher to be out for at least a week, possibly two or three.
Mathieu Garon faced just 23 shots but still allowed five goals last night. He didn’t win, so I figure he’s not “in” (re: Ken Hitchcock’s new “win and you’re in” strategy).
Jason Arnott will return to the lineup either today (game-time decision) or Saturday, according to John Glennon.
Cory Stillman is shooting for a return this weekend.
Tarik El-Bashir is reporting that Semyon Varlamov flt a tweak while working out on the recent road trip. He was in practice, albeit late, yesterday though. He is aiming to return December 30th.
Hot line alert – Upshall, Lombardi and Doan combined for 10 points last night, finally giving the Coyotes a line combo that has truly taken off. If this line can keep rolling it will have a domino effect on other lines as teams would have to focus more on shutting them down. However, Lombardi is a streaky player and a lot of the line’s success will ride on him.
Give Vrbata nine points in his last 10 games.
Weiss, Horton and Frolik – what more can I say? All three are on fire. On their own, I think Frolik can be a 90-point player, Horton an 85-point player and Weiss a 75-point player. Together, I think you can add five or 10 to each of those numbers ala Naslund/ Morrison/ Bertuzzi. But that won’t be until next year, as they took too long to start rolling this year.
I would be remiss if I didn’t congratulate Martin Brodeur for shutout number 104. That’s remarkable over 17 seasons and I think he’ll eventually top the 120-mark.
We’ve seen these streaks from him before so we know he can do it – Alex Steen had four points last night. He saw the most PP ice time for the Blues last night, other than Carlo Colaiacovo (eh Leaf fans?). The Blues are desperate for offense and coach Andy Murray may be looking at Steen in a whole new light now. It wouldn’t surprise me to see more ice time and responsibility over the next few games. He may be worth a waiver pickup. However, he is still playing with Winchester and McClement so if that doesn’t change you’ll be dropping him again in a hurry. The first PP unit was: Steen, Boyes, McDonald, Tkachuk and Colaiacovo. The next unit was Backes, Berglund, Kariya, Oshie and EJ.
Viktor Stalberg has two goals in two games since his recall, once again making an early impact.