A Look Ahead — Week 18

Dave Poleck

2012-02-03

 

Backes

 

A tough decision can be made easier with these charts showing you the best five and worst five schedules for upcoming seven-day periods. Some of you used them last year. But for the benefit of new readers, here is a refresher. The number next to the team indicates the ‘multiplier’ to used on a player’s point-per-game pace to give you an idea how many points to expect for that week.

 

 

The Blues ten-day layoff ends on Friday when they open up with a home game against the clock-fixing Kings. The break for your Blues players is definitely over; they play six times in the next ten days and eight times over the next 14. That schedule is evenly split for home and away games, so play them with a ton of confidence.

 

Another team with eight games over the next 14 days is the one that carries arguably the hottest player in the league right now, the New York Islanders and John Tavares. They have an equal split in home and road games over this stretch and it's interesting to look at how Tavares' production has varied in each setting. Through 23 games on the road, he has five goals and 19 assists. With 26 home games under his belt, his numbers skyrocket to 17 goals and 12 assists. So it is good to note that after Friday's game in Ottawa, the Islanders play four of five at home. Not that you would ever consider sitting Tavares; but that should help you decide whether or not you can sit his counterparts.

 

The Senators are looking to get things back on track after blowing the game against Boston earlier this week, giving them four straight losses. They haven't played at home since January 16; that being their only home game in their last ten. I expect them to come out flying to start their five-game homestand. Starting on Friday they face the Islanders, Leafs, Blues, Preds and Oilers.

 

The struggling Blackhawks hope to have gotten Toews and Sharp back at the right time this week. Tuesday's loss to Vancouver was the start of a nine-game road trip that sees them travel all over the place over the next 18 days. This will be making up for their home to road differential of seven games. While their goal differential at home is +22, it's all the way down to -8 on the road, leading to them having a 10-9-3 record away from the United Centre.

 

 

Friday Feb 3 to Thursday Feb 9, 2012

Best Bets

Toronto 4.39 – @Ott, Edm, @Win, @Phi

Los Angeles 4.30 – @StL, @Car, @TB, @Fla

 

 

St. Louis 4.11 – LA, @Nas, @