We have 2 and a half weeks left in the regular season and chances are - your fantasy playoffs are upon you. Below you will find players, notations and schedules to keep in mind over the final weeks of the NHL season.
10 Things to know heading into (or already riding along) in the playoffs:
1. Zach Smith (C, OTT 21% owned) - over the last 30 days has 7 goals, 5 assists, +9, 18 PIM, 3 PPP, 2 SHP, 35 SOG, 66 FW, 36 Hits and 9 Blocked Shots. That's the 8th most goals, 13th highest plus/minus, 30th most hits and 38th most PIM. The Ottawa Senators have a mixed group of remaining games with a few tough ones (Pittsburgh, Islanders, Anaheim and Florida) some middle of the road (Minnesota and Philadelphia) and some poor defensive teams (Winnipeg and Boston). He's on the top line among break out star Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Mark Stone.
2. Cam Talbot (G, Edm 61% owned) is 7-5 with a 1.92 GAA and a .940 save percentage in the last 30 days, not to mention 2 shutouts. They face one tough opponent ahead with San Jose but the rest is middle of the road or worse: LA, Anaheim, Calgary and Vancouver twice. If you are in a weekly and in need of a goalie, consider this for the breadth of favorable opponents.
3. Need to go deeper? Chad Johnson (G, Buff 17% owned) is 4-1 in in his last 5 starts allowing 2 goals or less in 4 of his last 5 starts. They have tough games against Pittsburgh Penguins and NY Rangers but the remainder is average or bottom of the barrel: Detroit Red Wings, Columbus Blue Jackets, NY Islanders, Toronto Maple Leafs and New Jersey Devils.
4. The following teams have at least 10 games or more left (Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks, Washington Capitals, Anaheim Ducks and NY Islanders)
5. The following teams only have 8 games remaining: Edmonton Oilers, Buffalo Sabres, Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Montreal Canadiens, Ottawa Senators, St. Louis Blues and Minnesota Wild.
6. Boone Jenner (C,RW, CBJ 47%) has 8 points in the last 9 games. He also has 27 shots or about 3 shots per game. In those 27 shots he has 4 goals or nearly 15% scoring which is high but sustainable. He's not too shabby in the hit category either.
7. Philadelphia Flyers who are battling for one of the last wild card spots in the East face this schedule: Colorado, Arizona, Winnipeg Jets, Washington Capitals, Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins twice, Detroit Red Wings, Toronto Maple Leafs (who have a team of all rookies playing at this point), and NY Islanders. 6 of those 10 teams are in the bottom ten in goals scored or goals allowed. Potential +/- bump there.
8. Nashville Predators have gone 10-4 over their last 14 games. If you are almost capped on games played at a position, this is the team to watch. They have 6 homes games and 3 away left. Follow the home games for favorable matchups with your current players or potential FAs (below). Their home games are against: Vancouver Canucks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Colorado Avalanche twice, San Jose Sharks and Arizona Coyotes. That's 3 bottom 8 teams and two below average defensive teams.
8a. If you are in need of Faceoffs won, hits or even goals, take a look at Mike Fisher (C, 5% owned)
8b. If you want shots or blocked shots Mattias Ekholm (D, 16% owned) has 30 shots and 26 blocked shots in the last 30 days.
9. Carolina Hurricanes have lost 9 of their last 12 scoring 2 goals or fewer in 8 of the 9 loses. They face the Islanders twice, Rangers, Boston and Florida once each. I can't imagine you've been riding a bunch of Hurricanes to the championship but don't anticipate anyone on that team providing a ton of playoff help.
10. St. Louis Blues, coming off a 5 game road trip added to their impressive late stint of 13-5. They have scored at least 4 goals in 9 of those 8 games. In the last 30 days:
10a. Troy Brouwer (RW, Stl, 27% owned) has 4 goals, 3 assists, 22PIM and 37 hits
10b. Paul Stastny (C, Stl, 25% owned) has 3 goals, 7 assists, 152 face offs won.
10c. Jori Lehtera (C, Stl, 8% owned) has 2 goals, 5 assists, 62 faceoffs won. He's on the top line with Jaden Schwartz and Vladmir Tarasenko.
As always - best of luck and I hope you had a great Fantasy Season!