Fantasy Schedule Week 20: Start Planning

The NHL trade deadline is about two weeks away and more then likely so is your fantasy hockey pool trade deadline. Time to start planning what you are going to do with your roster: is it time to rebuild or sacrifice some youth and go for it this year.

If your pool uses the final weeks of the season as playoffs something to consider when making a trade is the number of games to be played. Look at your scoring periods for your playoff weeks as you don’t want to be trading away a player that plays four games in a playoff week for a player who is only playing in two games.  Those two extra games could be the deciding factor.

Another thing to consider is where teams are in the standings.  A team that is a lock for the NHL playoffs may not play their stars as much to rest them for playoffs. A team battling for a playoff spot or first place in the division will play their star players more to secure a playoff spot or home ice advantage. Just a couple of things to consider as you approach your trade deadline.

Games to be played in week 20:

Four Games: Buffalo, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Vancouver and Washington

Three Games: Anaheim, Boston, Calgary, Carolina, Chicago, Colorado, Dallas, Detroit, Edmonton, Florida, Los Angeles, Montreal, Nashville, New Jersey, NY Islanders, NY Rangers, Ottawa, Phoenix, San Jose, St. Louis, Tampa Bay and Toronto

Two Games: Atlanta, Columbus and Pittsburgh

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 at least three home/away games this week or play all their games at home or on the road (home/road records up to February 10, 2011):

HOME: Buffalo (12-12-1), Chicago (16-13-0), Edmonton (7-15-4), Minnesota (13-11-2), Nashville (12-5-6) and Tampa Bay (18-6-2)

AWAY: Atlanta (12-11-5), Dallas (14-11-1), Detroit (16-8-2), Los Angeles (12-13-1), Philadelphia (17-6-3), Pittsburgh (15-7-3), Vancouver (16-7-4) and Washington (12-10-3)

If you participate in any type of head-to-head hockey pool then you are likely dressing a lineup for each 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 (record for Sunday games up to Week 18):

Buffalo (1-0), Calgary (2-2), Chicago (6-3), Detroit (3-2), Minnesota (3-3), Montreal (0-4), NY Rangers (3-3), Philadelphia (4-1), Pittsburgh (0-2) and Washington (7-1)

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. Here are the teams that play in back-to-back games this week (record of second game of back-to-back up to Week 18):

Anaheim (4-6), Boston (6-3), Buffalo (5-8), Carolina (5-6), Dallas (3-5), Detroit (5-4), Florida (3-8), Los Angeles (4-5), Minnesota (2-9), New Jersey (3-9), NY Rangers (10-4), Ottawa (2-8), Philadelphia (7-4), St. Louis (6-3), Toronto (3-6), Vancouver (6-3) and Washington (2-5)

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 February 10, 2011:

TOP FIVE: San Jose (9-0-1), New Jersey (8-1-1), Calgary (8-1-1), Philadelphia (8-2-0) and Vancouver (6-1-3)

BOTTOM FIVE: Ottawa (0-8-2), Edmonton (2-7-1), Atlanta (2-5-3), Florida (2-4-4) and Colorado (3-7-0)

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 February 10, 2011 for the past 7 and 14 days:

SKATER PAST 7: R.J. Umberger-CBJ (GP-four G-two A-six), Drew Stafford-BUF (GP-three G-five A-one), Mikael Samuelsson-VAN (GP-three G-three A-three), Thomas Vanek-BUF (GP-three G-three A-three), Nathan Horton-BOS (GP-three G-one A-five)

SKATER PAST 14: Samuelsson (GP-five G-four A-six), Jonathan Toews-CHI (GP-four G-two A-six), Daniel Sedin-VAN (GP-five G-two A-six), Umberger (GP-five G-two A-six), Ryan Kesler-VAN (GP-five G-five A-two)

Here are the top five goaltenders and bottom five goaltenders up to February 10, 2011 for the past 14 days:

HOT GOALTENDERS PAST 14: Antti Niemi-SJ (GS-five W-four SO-two GAA-1.78), Ilya Bryzgalov-PHO (GS-five W-three SO-two GAA-2.26), Miikka Kiprusoff-CAL (GS-five W-four GAA-1.94), Martin Brodeur-NJ (GS-three W-three GAA-1.29), Roberto Luongo-VAN (GS-three W-three GAA-1.67)

COLD GOALTENDERS PAST 14: Craig Anderson-COL (GS-three L-three GAA-4.03), Ondrej Pavelec-ATL (GS-four L-three GAA-4.02), Robin Lehner-OTT (GS-three L-three GAA-3.83), Kari Lehtonen-DAL (GS-three L-three GAA-3.28), Brian Elliott-OTT (GS-two L-two GAA-4.44)

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