Fantasy Hockey Playoff ONE (5/9)

 

There is still a bounce in the step for those fantasy poolies who own players from the New Jersey Devils as the Devils eliminated the Philadelphia Flyers with a 3-1 victory last night.  New Jersey took the series in five games which was a prediction no one saw coming, given the way Philadelphia humbled Pittsburgh in Round 1.  David Clarkson had the game winner on a play where Ilya Bryzgalov tried to clear the puck and Clarkson rejected it right back into the net.  Ilya Kovalchuk finished the scoring with a laser of a power play goal that looked liked it grabbed the net and shot right back out.  Martin Brodeur made 27 saves and looked the best he had since Game 7 of Round 1 against Florida.

The problem becomes who to choose for a Fantasy POTN.  It became tougher and tougher last night as it was apparent New Jersey would be advancing.  So here is our choice from last night.

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Fantasy POTN:

Ilya Kovalchuk, W, New Jersey Devils

Your leading scorer still left in the playoffs is now Kovalchuk who has 12 points on the playoff season.  That includes a goal and an assist last night.  Kovalchuk fired his trademark one timer with an incredible snipe that literally grabbed the netting just inside the left upper post and crossbar area before spinning out.  It was the goal that functionally ended the Flyers season even though there was 15 minutes left.  Kovalchuk will have at least a few days to rest that troublesome back which did limit his ice time a little last night (19:18 ATOI). 

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SCHEDULE TIME:

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Teams Notes
NY Rangers at Washington 7:30 PM | Gameday

This is the only game of the night and obviously tomorrow there will be no games on the schedule and Friday as well.  What does it come down to tonight?  The goaltending was very good in Game 5 and sadly it was two incidents that happened to Joel Ward that changed the game and maybe the series (the high stick and the screen).  Brad Richards scored the game tying goal and then Marc Staal tallied the game winner to put Washington on the brink.

Washington literally has had so many missed opportunities in this series (more than Ottawa even had).  Think about the Ovechkin shot that hit the post and literally some of the weirder bounces along the way.  This would be a much different series needless to say.  What is going to happen in Game 6 tonight?  That is anyone’s guess.

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Keep An Eye ON:

Henrik Lundqvist, G, New York Rangers

Lundqvist has to steal this one for the Rangers to eliminate the Capitals.  He and the Rangers have been in this position before against Washington and let them off the hook.  The last effort in Washington for the goalie was not good enough as he stopped only 23 of 26 shots and honestly gave up at least one softie.  The Vezina candidate has to play more aggressive in his crease and not stay so deep all the time.  If he changes it up even a bit tonight, I think the Rangers win this one in Washington.

Alex Ovechkin, W, Washington Capitals

This is your time Mr. Ovechkin to lead your team and fantasy rosters as well since Claude Giroux and several high scoring Flyers are gone.  He only has 8 points (4 G 4 A) in 12 games and that has to change if Washington is going to come back in this series and advance.  Ovechkin has to be a hitting machine tonight and a shooting machine.  The “Russian Machine” has to play like its no tomorrow because if he does not, not even Braden Holtby is going to save the Caps.  The puck is on your side of the ice Mr. Ovechkin!

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OUR THREE PROJECTED STARS:

1.  Braden Holtby

2.  Alex Ovechkin

3.  Henrik Lundqvist

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Good luck ladies and gentlemen and thanks for reading.  We will have more on the show tonight.


About Chris Wassel

Simply I am a hockey writer who is a jack of all trades. Whether it is draft, fantasy, NHL, KHL, AHL, etc...I probably can write about it. The challenge in hockey is to be able to step out of your comfort zone and write like you are still there. Hopefully you enjoy the humor in the writing on the site and tell your friends. Thanks for reading!

Fantasy Hockey Playoff ONE (5/9)

 

There are times where a player just clearly comes up big.  Jimmy Howard kept Detroit in it last night until they made a furious push to score three goals in the third to defeat San Jose 4-3 and push this series to a Game 6 in Detroit.  Some of the 39 saves in all were relatively routine to be honest but Howard also had very solid rebound control and lateral movement like I had not seen from him since October.

Now is he Chris Osgood v 2.0?  That was a question asked quite a bit and well if he wins a few Stanley Cups, wins around 400, and posts solid numbers all around, I suppose Howard would not complain in the least.  What Detroit did last night was displayed a heart of a champion that should have been vanquished and yet it was there for everyone to see.  Pavel Datsyuk, on one wrist, had three assists (two in the third).  Tomas Holmstrom netted the game winner doing what he does best.  For 20:00 last night, it looked like vintage Detroit.  San Jose was frailed and bedazzled right on the ice.  One could have checked pulses and probably found very few.

San Jose is now 1-3 in chances to eliminate an opponent and more than likely, they will take out Detroit at some point.  The hardest victory is the fourth one indeed and the hardest pill for fantasy poolies to swallow is when a player expected to do big things in the playoffs just goes silent and missing.

That is what has happened to Patrick Marleau.  Not only have the shots not really been there, as far as scoring chances, but he has no points in five games against Detroit.  In Game 5, Marleau was nonexistent near the front of the net and yes it seems unfair to shine the spotlight on him but his absence is the most glaring.   Dan Boyle has even showed up and most of the Sharks to be honest have played well.  The fun involved is that usually there are always a couple “turkey basters” (good) and several turkeys (bad).

Inevitably there are always the outstanding and here is what we had from last night.

LOOKING BACK:

1. Jimmy Howard (DET) — 3 GA on 42 shots…our Fantasy POTN.

2. Pavel Datsyuk (DET) — 3 assists despite the wrist injury.

3. Niklas Kronwall (DET) — Goal, assist, and some BIG HITS!

Also note that the kids in San Jose are alright.  Couture, Setoguchi, and Pavelski all scored for San Jose.  If it was not for Howard, the Sharks close it out last night no question.  Now to take a quick peek of tonight.

SCHEDULE TIME:

MONDAY, MAY 9, 2011

Teams Notes
Vancouver at Nashville 8:00 PM | Gameday 

 

Clearly, the Sedin Twins just cannot handle a physical presence.  If Joel Ward can continue to play at that intensity, then Vancouver is in for a considerable dogfight.  Pekka Rinne has outplayed Roberto Luongo in this series and that is not too much of a surprise.  The problem is Nashville just needs a little more scoring and they might be the ones up three games to two and not Vancouver.  Using the old “guns and butter” economics construct, Vancouver has way more guns but Nashville has the butter.  The guns is the talent but the butter is the grit.  It is very similar to the last round for Vancouver.  Whenever they show the butter, Vancouver is almost impossible to beat.

Ryan Kesler is the one player that has just taken over offensively for Vancouver.  He does not have that star player or line to worry about with Nashville which gives him free reign to drive the opposition crazy.  Even in the loss the other night, Kesler scored twice, nearly had a third, and played right through some cuts and bumps.  Would the Sedin Twins be able to do that?  I highly doubt it.  Nashville has to keep cranking the physicality if they expect to force a Game 7 and of course ride the hot goaltending of Pekka Rinne.  Oh and the Ryan Suter-Shea Weber combo needs to do something offensively, even if it is just to open some lanes for the forwards.

Projections have been tough in this series but we will try our best here before the door slams us on the back side here.  Here goes something and do read the TSN Gameday.  There is something very telling in the numbers of the Sedin Twins and Ryan Kesler.  Just imagine if they were all in sync.

PROJECTION JUNCTION:

  • Pekka Rinne (NSH) — 2 GA on 36 shots
  • Joel Ward (NSH) — 1 goal, 3 SOG
  • Shea Weber (NSH) — 2 assists, 5 SOG
  • Ryan Kesler (VAN) — 1 goal, 1 assist, 4 SOG
  • Alex Burrows (VAN) — 1 goal, 6 SOG
  • Roberto Luongo (VAN) — 3 GA on 39 shots

Yes we do think this one plays out as a 3-2 Nashville win in OT based on our simulations.  Good luck fantasy poolies and we will be tweeting updates and random observations all night.  Also, do check out the very interesting discussions with Kevin Allen and Scott Cullen last night on The Program.

About Chris Wassel

Simply I am a hockey writer who is a jack of all trades. Whether it is draft, fantasy, NHL, KHL, AHL, etc...I probably can write about it. The challenge in hockey is to be able to step out of your comfort zone and write like you are still there. Hopefully you enjoy the humor in the writing on the site and tell your friends. Thanks for reading!

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