#1 Give 'em a Look
Between missing 12 games with a shoulder injury earlier in the year and being a healthy scratch for a few games in late December, John-Michael Liles was probably dropped in a lot of leagues, as impatient GMs were probably moving on trying to catch lightning in a bottle. Well, we’d suggest it's time to give an old stand-by another look as Liles has returned from his scratches to put up 1+6=7 (with five PPP) in the six games since. We like him cause he’s consistent, averaging 12+30=42 over the four seasons since the lockout and has never had a season with fewer than 32 points in his entire career. The Avs also have a favourable schedule down the stretch, as 21 of their final 33 games are at home... no team has more home games remaining.
Others worth a look: Rene Bourque (Cgy – W), Troy Brouwer (Chi - W), Brent Burns (Min – D) and Cam Ward (Car – G)#2 Give 'em the Boot
It’s an all Minnesota Wild edition of “Give 'em da Boot” as people are all over these guys lately as Marty Havlat and Guillaume Latendresse have really created a buzz about this team… well we’re here to be the buzz-kill as guys like Eric Belanger, with his 6+8=14 in his last 14 games, is not someone you should be picking up as this guy is 32 and has a career high of 37 points. Likewise you should be passing on Antti Miettinen, sure he has 5+5=10 in his last 11 but remember when he was 6+4=10 in his first eight games to start 2008/09 and then finished with only 34 points in his next 74 games?… yeah, this guy is good for very short bursts and then he’s useless. Lest we forget Petr Sykora, as he’s been waived and the team is trying to figure out how to get rid of him… we suggest you do the same.
Others worth a boot: Brenden Morrow (Dal – W), Ales Kotalik (NYR – W), Erik Johnson (StL – D) and Chris Osgood (Det – G)#3 Injury Concerns
The Senators Pascal Leclaire is an injury concern whenever he plays… check that, even when he’s not playing he’s bound to find a way to get hurt. Earlier this year he took a puck to the face while sitting on the bench and that caused him to miss 16 games and his latest injury he suffered in practice when Mike Fisher doinked one off his skull and he went down with a concussion… he’s out indefinitely.#4 Crease Conflicts
It’s pretty plain to see that the Blackhawks don’t have a lot of faith in Cristobal Huet’s ability, so we’re just waiting for him falter enough for them to make the ole switcheroo and install our guy, Antti Niemi as their #1. Now, you have to be really bad to look like a sieve behind Chicago’s defense as they easily lead the league in the fewest shots allowed (24.0 /game), but somehow Huet has found a way as he’s given up four or more goals in four of his last eight games and sports a rather pear-shaped 3.11 gaa & .863 sv% over those eight games. Niemi has been great this year with a 12-3-1 record while leading the league in gaa at 1.90 and has only given up four or more goals in two of his 16 games.#5 Hit the Links
If you’re the type of person that’s tired of reading and just wants to hear guys ramble on about fantasy hockey for hours (literally) then check out the Weekly Slapshot Podcast over at FantasyHockey.com… it’s a little too verbose for our taste but there’s a real lack of fantasy hockey on the airwaves so good on these guys for bringin’ tha noise.
Fantasy Hockey Scouts