Looking Ahead: Lookout for Leddy and the Islanders

by Adam Daly-Frey on March 10, 2017
  • Looking Ahead
  • Looking Ahead: Lookout for Leddy and the Islanders

All fantasy owners need help in the short term AND the long term. The Looking Ahead feature identifies one player to plug into lineups in the short term, a second to invest in for the long term, a third to bench for the coming week, and a fourth who will struggle to meet expectations for some time. All players discussed are selected based on their upcoming schedule.

The Immediate Fix (Grab this guy and use him for the next several days)

Nick Leddy, D, New York Islanders (Available in 50 percent of Yahoo! Leagues) – Although the Islanders’ D corps tends to be tough to nail down in terms of ice time, Nick Leddy is in a prime spot this week upcoming with Johnny Boychuk still day-to-day. What that means for Leddy is that he’ll hold onto the prime PPQB position, at least for the time being; with 12 of his 35 points coming on the man advantage, he can definitely have an impact on special teams. Leddy is also good for peripheral leagues, as he’s average around 1 HIT and 1.5 BLK per game. With five games in the next seven days, the time to add Leddy is now.


The Building Block (Buy now, sit back and enjoy the production)

Drew Stafford, LW, Boston (Available in 97 percent of Yahoo! Leagues) – Since getting traded away from another lost season in Winnipeg to the (presumably) playoff-bound Bruins, Stafford has fired 12 shots on goal and picked up one goal and three assists – he’s also produced a 5v5 CF% of 54.93% and a SF% of 57.14% albeit in a very small sample, which is a trend in the right direction. The NoDak grad has grabbed a cushy role on the second line of the Bs, skating alongside the Davids Pastrnak and Krejci, and should stay there while Ryan Spooner recovers from a concussion; if that production from Stafford continues, consider his top-6 role locked up the rest of the way.


The Odd Man Out (His short term value is cause for concern)

Shea Weber, D, Montreal (Owned in 99 percent of Yahoo! Leagues) – Going back to the start of February, Montreal’s power play has been anemic – converting only 5 of 44 attempts in that time. As the power play quarterback, Shea Weber has been just as fruitless, picking up 3G-4A in those 16 games. That’s very high production from a defenseman, and Weber provides excellent peripheral stats, but it’s a far cry from the start of the season. The big defenseman has seen a small downtick in his ice time as well, only besting his ATOI (25:16) once since the arrival of Claude Julien. Weber is obviously not droppable, but he can be sat out against high PK% teams and tough matchups, which the Habs have coming up.


The Anchors (They’ll do nothing but disappoint even over the long haul)

Patrick Marleau, LW, San Jose (Owned in 56 percent of Yahoo! Leagues) – Looking past Marleau’s 3g-2a in his last 10 games, there’s a startling statistic that shows just how far the 37-year old has fallen: his ice time. In those same 10 games, Marleau managed to crack the 16-minute mark just four times, and the 17-minute mark thrice. Going back even further to the start of 2017, Marleau topped 17-minutes 10 times in 28 games. His current average is sitting at 17:07, which is already a full two minutes lower than last season, and his lowest TOI since 2001-02. He’s still producing by shooting 13.8% this season, but he’s unlikely to hit 200 SOG this year, and won’t hit 50 points. There are better players available (like Drew Stafford!) in most leagues.



Love ‘Em (These squads are sure to pay dividends in the coming days)

Detroit – With the Red Wings about to miss the playoffs for the first time and their best point-scorer (Henrik Zetterberg) sitting 20 points ahead of their next best scorer (Anthony Mantha, 33 points), it’s odd to “love” Detroit – but, with seven games between the 10th and 21st, there’s actually lots to love! Detroit gets the “cakewalk” stretch, facing Colorado and Arizona on the road before heading back home to play the Avs again, as well as the hapless Sabres.

New York Islanders – It was mentioned above that Nick Leddy makes a good short-term pickup, and one of the reasons why is their schedule; the Isle get a home-road back-to-back against the Carolina Hurricanes, in addition to a game at home against the Jets. The rest of their week has some tough games, but the Islanders will finally be home for three games where they’re at their best – they’ve scored 25 goals in their last five home games.

Los Angeles – The Kings are currently in their 7-game home-stand referenced last week, but they’ve arrived at the meaty part of it; between the 10th and 21st, the Kings play six games. Four of those games will come at the Staples Center, and like Detroit, include some nice matchups – against the Coyotes and Sabres specifically.


Leave ‘Em (These squads will leave fantasy owners sorely disappointed in the short term)

Montreal – As the Habs are in the middle of a six-game winning streak, it’s tough to cast Canadiens to the side. Unfortunately for Montreal, their next stretch of games includes games against division rivals Ottawa – who are now good – on top of a game against the high-powered Blackhawks. Montreal hasn’t scored more than four goals since they last played Arizona, and have scored one goal or less seven times since February 1st – 16 games.  

Dallas – Another Western Conference team that has only five games, but the difference between the Stars and the Kings is that Dallas just sold off their spare parts – at least, the spare parts that weren’t placed on injured reserve. With a large portion of their roster missing, Dallas will be in tough as an already porous defensive team; their matchups won’t help, as they face the Sharks and Capitals, let alone Connor McDavid and the Oilers.

Buffalo – Almost nothing has changed for Buffalo since last week, when they were listed as a Leave ‘Em –their upcoming schedule “includes games against the two teams that fought for the Cup last season (SJ and Pittsburgh), and a road/home b2b against the Blue Jackets”. Discarding games against the Avs and Coyotes, the Sabres have allowed 30-or-more SOG in their last 23 games, including seven with 40-or-more against.

Friday  March 10th to Thursday  March 16th

Best Bets

SJ 4.5675 – Four games – Home NSH  DAL  BUF  STL

STL 4.565 – Five games – Away LAK  ANA  SJ – Home ANA  NYI

NYI 4.505 – Four games – Away STL  CAR – Home CAR  WPG

LAK 4.41 – Four games – Home WAS  STL  ARI  BUF

CBJ 4.3425 – Four games – Away BUF  PHI – Home BUF  FLA

Steer Clear

MTL 1.9 – Two games – Away EDM – Home CHI

NYR 2.1475 – Two games – Away DET – Home TB

DAL 2.755 – Three games – Away SJ  EDM  VAN

NSH 2.8275 – Three games – Away SJ  WAS – Home WPG

TOR 2.9925 – Three games – Away CAR  FLA  TB

Saturday  March 11th to Friday  March 17th

Best Bets

SJ 4.5675 – Four games – Home NSH DAL BUF STL

NJ 4.51 – Four games – Away ARI PIT- Home WPG PHI

NYI 4.505 – Four games – Away STL CAR – Home CAR WPG

CGY 4.4475 – Four games – Away WPG – Home PIT BOS DAL

LAK 4.41 – Four games – Home WAS STL ARI BUF

Steer Clear

MTL 1.9 – Two games – Away EDM – Home CHI

CHI 2.55 – Three games – Away MTL OTT – Home MIN

MIN 2.7075 – Three games – Away CHI WAS CAR

NSH 2.8275 – Three games – Away SJ WAS – Home WPG

TOR 2.9925 – Three games – Away CAR FLA TB

Sunday  March 12th to Saturday  March 18th

Best Bets

SJ 4.5675 – Four games – Home DAL BUF STL ANA

DET 4.5375 – Four games – Away COL ARI – Home NYR COL

ARI 4.3775 – Four games – Away LAK – Home COL DET STL

EDM 4.3575 – Four games – Home MTL DAL BOS VAN

NYI 4.3525 – Four games – Away CAR – Home CAR WPG CBJ

Steer Clear

BUF 2.5175 – Three games – Away SJ LAK ANA

FLA 2.76 – Three games – Away CBJ NYR – Home TOR

MTL 2.8025 – Three games – Away EDM OTT- Home CHI

WPG 2.85 – Three games – Away NSH NJ NYI

PHI 2.8875 – Three games – Away NJ – Home CBJ PIT

Monday  March 13th to Sunday  March 19th

Best Bets

CAR 4.93 – Five games – Away NYI PHI- Home NYI MIN NSH

LAK 4.6625 – Four games – Away CGY- Home STL ARI BUF

ARI 4.3775 – Four games – Away LAK – Home COL DET STL

NYI 4.3525 – Four games – Away CAR – Home CAR WPG CBJ

PIT 4.3375 – Four games – Away CGY PHI – Home NJ FLA

Steer Clear

MTL 2.8975 – Three games – Away OTT – Home CHI OTT

BUF 2.5175 – Three games – Away SJ LAK ANA

NYR 2.9125 – Three games – Away MIN – Home TB FLA

WAS 2.835 – Three games – Away TB – Home MIN NSH

TOR 2.945 – Three games – Away FLA TB – Home CHI

Tuesday  March 14th to Monday  March 20th

Best Bets

DET 4.695 – Four games – Away COL ARI – Home COL BUF

LAK 4.41 – Four games – Away CGY EDM- Home ARI BUF

EDM 4.3575 – Four games – Home DAL BOS VAN LAK

SJ 4.4475 -Four games – Away DAL- Home BUF STL ANA

NJ 4.2625 – Four games – Away PIT – Home WPG PHI CBJ

Steer Clear

NYR 1.81 – Two games – Away MIN – Home FLA

VAN 2.1625 – Two games – Away EDM – Home DAL

WPG 2.7875 – Three games – Away NJ NYI – Home MIN

TB 2.7925 – Three games – Away OTT – Home TOR WAS

WAS 2.835 – Three games – Away TB – Home MIN NSH

Wednesday  March 15th to Tuesday  March 21st

Best Bets

DET 5.5025 – Five games – Away COL ARI MTL- Home COL BUF

PIT 4.29 – Four games – Away PHI BUF- Home NJ FLA

PHI 4.29 – Four games – Away NJ WPG- Home PIT CAR

CHI 4.2675 – Four games – Away OTT TOR – Home COL VAN

COL 4.2575 – Four games – Away DET CHI – Home DET STL

Steer Clear

NYI 2.1525 – Two games – Home WPG CBJ

NYR 2.8075 – Three games – Away MIN NJ- Home FLA

CBJ 2.9975 – Three games – Away NYI NJ – Home FLA

WPG 2.9975 – Three games – Away NYI – Home MIN PHI

DAL 3.03 – Three games – Away VAN CGY – Home SJ

Thursday  March 16th to Wednesday  March 22nd

Best Bets

DET 4.3625 – Four games – Away ARI MTL – Home COL BUF

CHI 4.2675 – Four games – Away OTT TOR – Home COL VAN

ARI 4.21 – Four games – Away NSH TB – Home DET STL

MIN 4.075 – Four games – Away CAR WPG – Home NYR SJ

SJ 4.0525 – Four games – Away DAL MIN – Home STL ANA

Steer Clear

BOS 2.85 – Three games – Away EDM TOR – Home OTT

CGY 2.9125 – Three games – Away WAS – Home DAL LAK

ANA 2.96 – Three games – Away SJ – Home BUF EDM

WPG 2.9975 – Three games – Away NYI – Home MIN PHI

DAL 3.03 – Three games – Away VAN CGY – Home SJ



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