Fantasy, NHL

Tools of the Trade (Week 18 Recap)

February 15, 2016

The trade deadline has passed, so while the core of our rosters are set, we can still drop and pickup players. This came in handy this week as injuries have started to pile up; it’s crazy to see players like Nash, Hossa, Spezza, Kronwall, and Pietrangelo on the free agent list, but with the standings so close, no one seems to want to use up a roster spot on an injured player.

And now that the deadline has passed, we saw three successful trades this year:

Nov 16th: Brett acquires Nikita Kucherov from Rhys
Rhys acquires Jordan Eberle from Brett

Dec 16th: Rhys acquires Sidney Crosby, Alex Pietrangelo from Chris
Chris acquires Steven Stamkos, Ryan Suter from Rhys

Jan 11th: Chris acquires Henrik Lundqvist from Rhys
Rhys acquires Shea Weber from Chris

There wasn’t much movement with only six teams, but the names that swapped sides were pretty big. I’m expecting that next season we’ll see more trades as the rosters expand and we have to dig deeper into the free agent pool; guys like Brandon Saad will be a roster staple, rather than a hired gun when it’s convenient to pick him up.

Matchup Recap

Well well well, would you look at that. Brett has a two week winning streak going on! While his goalie stats were atrocious this week, Davin’s were even worse, so Brett came away with a 7-4-0 victory.

In the other matchups, Rhys beat Frank 8-3-0 and Chris handed Jace his second loss in a row, beating him 8-2-1. Not only did this launch Chris back into third place in the standings, it also makes Jace’s first two-week losing streak this season, an unfamiliar place for him.

This week Jace (95-84-19) tries to regain ground on Rhys (120-68-10) who is beginning to run away with first place, Frank (69-110-19) tries to keep pace as Brett (80-103-15) starts to close in on the pack, and Davin (90-92-16) and Chris (93-90-15) continue their battle for third.

botp-weekly-18

Best and Worst This Week

Goals – Rhys 26 / Brett 10
Assists – Rhys 45 / Jace 25
+/- –  Rhys +13 / Frank -4
PPP – Rhys 29 / Frank 10
SHP –  Rhys 3 / Davin, Chris & Jace 0
FOW – Davin 224 / Rhys 121
ATOI – Rhys 21:20 / Davin 19:40
SOG – Rhys 204 / Frank 132
W – Chris 4 / Davin 1
GAA – Chris 1.182 / Davin 4.963
SV% – Chris .9603 / Davin .8790

This was Rhys and Chris’ week obviously. Rhys was tops in all the skating categories (except FOW), and Chris took all the goalie stats.

Not a great week for everyone else. Can you turn it around guys? Please?

Player Showcase

Ugh, Brad Marchand is the worst. He’s on the Bruins, who suck. He’s pesky, chippy, and incredibly annoying to play against. He just has a face you want to punch. And he’s having a career year, which makes it even worse.

Marchand is a remarkably steady producer, good for 25ish goals and 50ish points a year. His career high came in 2011-12 when he scored 28 G and 27 A…but this year he’s already at 28 G and 15 A with 26 games left to play. He’ll hit 30 for sure, probably 35, maybe 40? That’d be an unbelievable jump for him.

Oh, and 4 of those goals this year have been shorties. That hurts even more.

He’s also a possession monster, with a CorsiFor% well above 50%. He peaked at 59.9% in 2012-2013, and he’s at a very respectable 54.1% this season.

I hate him. But I wish I had him.

Watching the Waiver Wire

Playing in relief of the injured Mike Smith, Arizona’s Louis Dominigue has been a pleasant surprise this season. There’s no question he’s struggled at times (a particularly poof 3-game stretch saw him give up 5 goals a night to Winnipeg, LA and Chicago), but he’s also put up some very respectable numbers that have allowed the Coyotes to remain in the playoff hunt. He’ll continue to get the starts for the near future, so he could be worth bringing on to bolster your goalie stats.

Justin Abdelkader picked up 5 assists last week, bringing his total to 14 G 17 A. He’s also topped 21 minutes in TOI over his last 5 games, way up from his yearly average of 18:14, and is averaging over 2 shots per game. Those are great supporting numbers from a forward.

Old man Jarome Iginla had a great week tallying 2 G and 3 A with an astonishing 17 shots on goal. Much like Jaromir Jagr in Florida, the Avalanche have figured out how to leverage Iginla’s incredible skill set even as his speed decreases. Iginla has 8 points in his last 7 games, and has been a huge reason that the Avs currently find themselves in a playoff spot.

Buffalo has several exciting young stars, but Marcus Foligno has been flying under the radar a bit. This weekend he exploded for 3 G and 1 A against Montreal and Colorado, going +4 overall and firing 6 shots on net. The Sabres are playing Ottawa, Columbus and Pittsburgh this week, all of whom have struggled to keep the puck out of the net – could this be the time that Foligno really breaks out?

Chris Tanev has seen his usage skyrocket as Alex Edler remains on the IR, regularly pulling in over 23 minutes per night. He’s sitting at 2 G 11 A on the season, but 4 of those assists have come in the last 8 games. Could this be the start of a hot streak?

It’s that time of year where injuries are playing a big role, and with Kevin Shattenkirk sidelined, Jay Bouwmeester has been seeing his ice time soar. At over 25 minutes per night, Bouwmeester hasn’t put up many points, but he’s reliably picking up a shot or two per game.

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