Ramblings: Skinner Relevant Again, Kreider the Goal Leader, Duchene Comeback (Jan 23)

Ian Gooding

2022-01-23

Not one, not two, but three Sabres scored a pair of goals against the Flyers in Saturday's early game. That's how bad it is for the Flyers, who have now lost 11 consecutive games. Can they fire another head coach this season? Will UFA-to-be Claude Giroux be traded at the deadline? Lots of questions in Philly.

Jeff Skinner must enjoy playing for Don Granato a whole lot more than playing for Ralph Krueger. Skinner scored two goals and added an assist, giving him seven goals and three assists in the nine games he has played in 2022. You've probably soured from Skinner because of his previous two seasons, but he's currently on a 30-goal pace. The shots are going in at a higher rate (13.7 SH%) than last season (6.3 SH%), but he is also taking nearly a shot more per game this season (3.0 SOG/GP) compared to last season (2.1 SOG/GP). Believe it or not, it might be time to consider adding Skinner to your roster again (just 12 percent rostered in Yahoo leagues). This analysis is coming from a guy who bailed on Skinner in his keeper league and will probably watch someone else reap the rewards.

With his own two goals and assist, Skinner's linemate Tage Thompson has 10 points over his last eight games. On a 60-point pace, Thompson is another Sabre proving there is fantasy value in Buffalo after all. Thompson is tied for the Sabres scoring lead with 28 points in 38 games.

In his 20th NHL game, Peyton Krebs scored his first two NHL goals. Since Krebs has just a single point in his previous 15 games, it looks like you'll need to be patient with him.

Tied with Thompson atop the Sabres scoring race is Rasmus Dahlin, who chipped in with two helpers on Saturday and has five points over his last two games. Dahlin now has 13 points over his last 14 games, so his career is trending in the right direction after a rough 2020-21 season.

If you combine his disastrous first period on Tuesday against Carolina with another pair of goals allowed in the first period on Saturday, Tuukka Rask had allowed seven goals over two periods. Yet after that he settled down, holding off the Jets for two periods to earn a 3-2 win. Mainly because of Tuesday, Rask still has a 3.87 GAA and .857 SV% in three games, so it may take a bit of time to shake off the rust.

Brad Marchand was okay after taking a hit on Thursday that forced him to leave the game, earning an assist on David Pastrnak's power-play goal.

Blake Wheeler returned to the Jets' lineup from LTIR on Saturday. Although he was held without a point, he logged 21:39 on his usual spot alongside Mark Scheifele.