It is the Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend and I am thankful that week two in the NHL is the first full week of this new NHL season.
The key match up this week is on October 14 when Mike Modano plays his first game in Dallas not in a Stars uniform. Modano scored a goal for the Red Wings in the season opener against the Ducks and should have a strong game against the organization he spent his entire career with till this season.
If possible avoid dressing players from the teams that were over in Europe as they will be going through jet lag and trying to get their bodies adjusted to North American time zones.
Games to be played in Week 2:
Four Games: Anaheim, Buffalo, Chicago, Colorado, New Jersey, Islanders, Pittsburgh and Vancouver
Three Games: Atlanta, Detroit, Florida, Montreal, Nashville, Ottawa, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Tampa Bay and Washington
Two Games: Calgary, Carolina, Columbus, Dallas, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Minnesota, Rangers, Phoenix and Toronto
One Game: Boston and San Jose
When it comes to dressing your players for the upcoming week, especially your goalies, it is important to know which team is on a long road trip and which team is enjoying an extended period at home. Listed below are the teams that play all their games at home or on the road (minimum two games) and their home/road records up to October 9, 2010:
HOME: Calgary (0-0-0), Dallas (0-0-0), Los Angeles (0-0-0) and Minnesota (0-0-0)
AWAY: Atlanta (0-0-0), Carolina (2-0-0), Colorado (0-0-0), Edmonton (0-0-0), Tampa Bay (0-0-0) and Toronto (0-0-0)
If you participate in any type of head-to-head hockey pool then you are likely dressing a lineup for the scoring period, which usually ends on Sunday. As the week comes to an end and you find yourself in a close battle for those wins you want as many players as possible playing for you. Here are the teams that play on Sunday: Anaheim, Carolina, Phoenix and Vancouver
When you are deciding which goalie to dress you need to look at the NHL schedule to see if your goalie’s team will play in a back-to-back game that week. Most coaches will not dress the same goalie in back-to-back games so that is something to consider when you are thinking about which goalie to dress for the week. Avoid dressing goalies who are playing overseas as there is a good chance the coaches will decide to spilt the games between their two goalies. Here are the teams that play in back-to-back games this week: Atlanta, Buffalo, Chicago, Colorado (double back-to-backs), Columbus, Montreal, Nashville, Islanders, Phoenix, Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay
Knowing which team is on a hot streak or cold streak will help in making your lineup decisions, for example you definitely want to dress a goalie from teams that are on a hot streak. Here are the top five and bottom five teams up to October 9, 2010:
TOP FIVE: Carolina (2-0-0), Detroit (1-0-0), Edmonton (1-0-0), Buffalo (1-0-0) and Philadelphia (1-0-0)
BOTTOM FIVE: Anaheim (0-1-0), Calgary (0-1-0), Columbus (0-1-0), Ottawa (0-1-0) and Montreal (0-1-0)
Most elite stars are consistent scorers, but there are several players who are very streaky so keep an eye on their stats so that you can dress them while they are on a hot streak. Here are the top five scorers up to October 9, 2010 at each position:
FORWARDS: Jussi Jokinen-CAR (1G 2A), Derek Roy-BUF (2G 0A), Evander Kane-ATL (2G 0A), Loui Eriksson-DAL (2G 0A) and Paul Stastny-COL (2G 0A)
DEFENSEMEN: John-Michael Liles-COL (0G 2A), Ryan Whitney-EDM (0G 2A), Alex Goligoski-PIT (1G 0A), Anton Babchuk-CAR (1G 0A) and Brent Burns-MIN (1G 0A)
GOALTENDERS: Cam Ward-CAR (2GS 2W), Jimmy Howard-DET (1GS 1W 1SO), Nikolai Khabibulin-EDM (1GS 1W 1SO), Sergei Bobrovsky-PHI (1GS 1W) and Ryan Miller-BUF (1GS 1W)
For more fantasy hockey analysis, check out fantasyhockeycoach.com