#1 Give 'em a Look
With only one goal so far TJ Oshie is not drawing a lot of attention to himself but combined with eight assists he’s at a point-per-game pace. He flies under a lot of radars as the Blues don’t garner a lot of attention but we think he’s ready to break out this season in a big way. He was already second on the team in points last season (with 48) and led the team’s forwards in average ice-time (18:19/gm). The Blues have a lot of young and talented players and at some point they’re going to figure it out… and if they all happen to figure it out at the same time, then look out.
Others worth a look: Ryan Callahan (NYR – RW), Artem Anisimov (NYR - C), Jeff Skinner (Car – LW) and Alex Pietrangelo (StL – D)#2 Give 'em the Boot
After the first game of the season, Carolina’s Brandon Sutter was on pace for 164 goals and based on the amount of hype that he was getting, we suspect a lot of people thought he might be able to keep it up. Well he’s had 1+2=3 in the 11 games since so I think Gretzky’s records are safe. He’s seen his ice-time decrease lately as he started the year playing at least 18 minutes in his first four games but has been below 17 in each of his last eight. His 40 points last year were a surprise to us as we didn’t think he had it in him and maybe he’s got more tricks up his sleeve… but we wouldn’t count on it.
Others worth a boot: Dustin Penner (Edm – LW), Blake Comeau (NYI – W), Nikolay Zherdev (Phi – W) and Rick DiPietro (NYI – G)#3 Injury Concerns
There were a few false alarms last week as Marian Hossa’s upper body injury turned out to be nothing serious and he’s only out a few weeks and Evgeni Malkin’s knee injury is only a day-to-day thing but then the real deal dropped on some GMs like a ton of bricks as Zach Parise suffered a knee injury and will be out for 3 months. You can’t replace guys like that as he was a top 5 pick in a lot of leagues, so the best you can do is try to keep your head above water until he returns.#4 Crease Conflicts
There were a lot of people who were hoping that Steve Mason was just going through a sophomore slump last year and that he’d get back to his rookie season form this year. Well it hasn’t worked out that way so far as his numbers (3.30 gaa & .894 sv%) are actually worse than last year through his first eight games. Much like the situation in Pittsburgh, a journeyman backup goalie has stepped up to spell a struggling starter as Mathieu Garon has gone 3-0-0 with a 1.15 gaa & .957 sv% in four games. Garon was decent for Columbus last year as well and stole some starts from Mason as they split the starts 55/27 (Mason/Garon) and we can see that weighted more heavily towards Garon this year.#5 Hit the Links
Elite Prospects is a great site to bookmark and keep handy as it’s a tremendous resource for info on your favourite European leagues and prospects. But beware, you might end up spending hours pouring over all the information that’s available… take our word for it.
Fantasy Hockey Scouts