A few noteworthy situations to keep your eyes on as we head into the latter part of the fantasy hockey week:
Florida Panthers- The Panthers have been terrible all year, but Jose Theodore has been abysmal in net. His numbers (4-6-2, 3.37 GAA, .893 SV%) have gotten worse, and he didn’t do himself or fantasy owners any favors in allowing four goals on 19 shots in Monday’s 6-4 win over the Penguins. Theodore was pulled after two periods in favor of Scott Clemmenson, who stopped all 15 shots he faced and earned the win. He hasn’t looked good either, but was solid in his last start, allowing just two goals. This is an interesting situation brewing here, as Jacob Markstrom might be called up to get significant playing time so the team can see what he’s all about. He has made two starts this year, losing both while allowing three goals in each, but the 23-year old could be the future.
Los Angeles Kings- Jonathan Bernier had only started one of the Kings’ first 10 games backing up Jonathan Quick, but has started three of their past seven. Bernier has racked up a 3-0 record allowing one goal in each game and owns a 3-1 record with a 1.80 goals against average and a .916 save percentage this season. Quick, who started off slow is rebounding nicely. He has allowed four goals over his past three games- all wins. Bernier is owned in just 12 percent of Yahoo leagues, but his numbers are very good. The Kings could possibly even trade him to a team that needs goaltending help, which would make him even more valuable to fantasy owners.
New Jersey Devils-The plan was to have Martin Brodeur start most of the games with backup Johan Hedberg starting one a week and one on each time the Devils had back-to-back games. But Brodeur tweaked his back Sunday during warm-ups and pulled himself out of the game minutes before it started. He was placed on injured reserve Tuesday and will miss at least the Devils’ next two games, Thursday at Winnipeg and Saturday at Buffalo. Hedberg, had been great in his first three starts (allowed two combined goals) but has allowed 14 in his past three starts. Mike Kinkaid has been called up from Albany to be Hedberg’s backup. If you have to set your lineup weekly, get Brodeur out of there. And there are also probably better options than Hedberg, who may only get one start this week.
Tampa Bay Lightning- Starter Anders Lindback allowed three goals on 10 shots Sunday against Pittsburgh before getting yanked in favor of Mathieu Garon allowed one goal on 11 shots. Garon was brilliant in his previous start allowing two goals on 34 shots in a 5-3 win over the Hurricanes and on Tuesday night, he lost 2-1 to the Sabres, making 19 saves. So for those keeping score at home, Garon has played eight of the past nine periods for the Lightning. Interesting to note that while Lindback is the starter and has seven wins, his goals against (3.27) and save percentage (.890) are much worse than Garon’s (2.75 and .917 respectively).