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Michael Finewax gives you all the information you need to know as the NHL resumes action after the Olympic …

The Olympics have been at the forefront of the hockey world over the last two weeks but the NHL resumes this week as fantasy fans will get back to looking at the box scores starting Tuesday.

 

The NHL was supposed to take a couple of games off after the Gold Medal match but a snow out forced Buffalo and Carolina to re-schedule on Tuesday.

 

Everyone who participated at the Olympics, save for the final four teams of Canada, Finland, Sweden and the United States, will have received at least a week of time off to recover as the quarter-finals ended on Wednesday. I'm giving you all the players who will not get much of a break as they are playing in medal action on the weekend. These players may get a game off or reduced ice time in their first game back due to jet lag.

 

Don’t forget, for everything NHL, check out Rotoworld's Player News, and follow @Rotoworld_ HK and @mfinewaxhockey on Twitter.

 

While you're at it, please also read Rotoworld writers @RyanDadoun, @CoreAbbott, @cyclelikesedins@kbrownroto and @katshockey for the latest news.

 

Now to The Week Ahead.

WEEK OF FEBRUARY 24-MARCH 2

4 Games- Carolina

3 Games–Boston, Buffalo, Colorado, Florida, Los Angeles, Montreal, New Jersey, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Philadelphia, Phoenix, St. Louis, San Jose, Tampa Bay, Vancouver, Washington

2 Games - Anaheim, Calgary, Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Edmonton, Minnesota, Nashville, Ottawa, Pittsburgh, Toronto, Winnipeg

Carolina plays all four games on the road.

Buffalo, Colorado and the New York Islanders play three games at home.

St. Louis, San Jose and Tampa Bay play three games on the road.

INJURIES

John Tavares injured his knee during the Olympics and is out for the rest of the season. (Click here to see the rest of the injury list.)

ANAHEIM

Games this week

vs. St. Louis, vs. Carolina

Rested team: vs. Carolina (Sunday)

Tired Team: None

Notes

Good news for Viktor Fasth owners as he is expected back in the Anaheim lineup shortly after being out since late November with lower body muscle inflammation. Nick Bonino will be ready to go after the break after missing the last four games before the Olympics with an upper body injury. Jonas Hiller was outstanding for Switzerland, stopping 68 of 70 shots but has a week off as the Swiss were eliminated on Tuesday.  Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, Jakob Silfverberg, Teemu Selanne, Cam Fowler and Sami Vatanen are still playing at the Olympics.

BOSTON

Games this week

@ Buffalo, vs. Washington, @ New York Rangers

Rested team: vs. Buffalo (Wednesday)

Tired Team: None

Notes

Adam McQuaid (leg) practiced on Thursday and could return to action this week. He has been out since January 19. Tuukka Rask was sensational in Finland's  3-1 win over Russia in the quarter-finals and that has to bode well for the Bruins down the stretch. Zdeno Chara and his Slovakian teammates did not have a good Olympic Games and as a result, he has a full week off before the Sabres game on Wednesday. Patrice Bergeron, Loui Eriksson and Tuukka Rask are still active in the Olympics.

BUFFALO

Games this week

vs. Carolina, vs. Boston, vs. San Jose

Rested team: vs. San Jose

Tired Team: vs. Boston (Wednesday)

Notes

The Sabres play three games in four nights so look for Jhonas Enroth to play once this week with Ryan Miller playing the other two games.  Linus Omark signed with Lulea of the Swedish League after the Sabres placed him on waivers Monday. Look for Miller's name to be front and center as the NHL's trade deadline of March 5 approaches. The unrestricted free agent to be will be a great acquisition for a playoff bound team. He is also the only Buffalo Sabre still alive to win an Olympic medal.

CALGARY

Games this week

vs. Los Angeles, @ Edmonton

Rested team: vs. Los Angeles (Thursday)

Tired Team: None

Notes

Curtis Glencross (ankle) was able to finally skate but was unable to practice on Wednesday. Derek Smith was recalled by the Flames on Tuesday. They suspended Lane MacDermid who refused to report to Abbotsford of the AHL after their all-star break. Reto Berra was outstanding for Switzerland in their 1-0 loss to Sweden. There are no Flames remaining at the Olympics.

CAROLINA

Games this week

@ Buffalo, @ Dallas, @ Los Angeles, @ Anaheim

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Anaheim (Sunday)

Notes

The Hurricanes are the only team in the NHL to play four games this week and also play three times in four nights so expect to see Cam Ward and Anton Khudobin to split the net. Justin Peters was sent to Charlotte of the AHL on Thursday for a conditioning stint.  Justin Faulk and Tuomo Ruutu are the only Hurricanes still active at the Olympics.

CHICAGO

Games this week

@ New York Rangers, vs. Pittsburgh

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

It's a good thing the Blackhawks have only two games this week as Jonathan Toews, Marcus Kruger, Patrick Sharp, Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith and Niklas Hjalmarsson are still playing for medals at the Olympics.  Brandon Pirri is being mentioned in trade rumors.

COLORADO

Games this week

vs. Los Angles, vs. Phoenix, vs. Tampa Bay

Rested team: vs. Phoenix (Friday) vs. Tampa Bay (Sunday)

Tired Team: None

Notes

The Avalanche are home for all three this week. Alex Tanguay will undergo hip surgery on February 21 and is out for the season. The Avs are interested in negotiating a contract extension with Ryan O'Reilly. Semyon Varlamov seemed to have lost his confidence in the quarter-finals for the Russians and you have to wonder if he will let it bother him when NHL play resumes. Paul Stastny, Matt Duchene and Gabriel Landeskog are still playing at the Olympics.

COLUMBUS

Games this week

@ New Jersey, vs. Florida

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

Marian Gaborik practiced on Wednesday and is hoping that he will be able to play when action resumes on February 27. He suffered a broken collarbone on December 21 and it forced him to miss the Olympics. Gaborik has played in only 18 games this season, and the Blue Jackets could really use his scoring touch down the stretch. The Blue Jackets do not have anyone still left at the Olympics so they should start the last quarter of the season well rested.

DALLAS

Games this week

vs. Carolina, vs. Tampa Bay

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

Kari Lehtonen and Jamie Benn are still playing at the Olympics. Teenager Valeri Nichushkin impressed for the Russians and he is someone to keep your eye on. He has 13 goals and 28 points in 55 games, not too shabby for an 18-year-old rookie. Nichushkin is also a plus-16, the best on the team. Phillippe Desrosiers, the Stars second round pick in the 2013 draft, has set a QMJHL record as he has gone 213:15 minutes without giving up a goal.

DETROIT

Games this week

@ Montreal, @ Ottawa

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Ottawa (Thursday)

Notes

The Red Wings suffered a major blow at the Olympics as Henrik Zetterberg suffered a herniated disc in his back and may be gone for the remainder of the NHL season. Stephen Weiss has been out of action since undergoing sports hernia surgery on December 23 but he is expected to play when action resumes on Wednesday. It is also expected that Johan Franzen will be good to go against Montreal after he has missed the last 22 of 23 games with a concussion. Daniel Alfredsson, Niklas Kronwall, Jonas Gustavsson and Jimmy Howard are still with their respective Olympic teams.

EDMONTON

Games this week

vs. Minnesota, vs. Calgary

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None  

Notes

The Oilers have no one left at the Olympics after Ales Hemsky and Anton Belov returned home when their respective teams lost in the quarter-finals. Edmonton will enter the last quarter of the season without a hope of making the playoffs so they will be fighting for position when it comes to the Draft. They desperately need another defenseman and their cause will be helped greatly if they could get Aaron Ekblad of the Barrie Colts, who is regarded as the top defensive prospect in the 2014 draft.

FLORIDA

Games this week

vs. Washington, @ Columbus, @ New York Islanders  

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

The Panthers play three games in four nights so expect to see Scott Clemmensen in goal once for Tim Thomas. Tomas Kopecky suffered an upper body injury when he was elbowed in the head during the Olympics and his return this week to action is questionable. The most important injury by far was to rookie Aleksander Barkov as he suffered a knee injury during the Norway game and is likely out for the remainder of the season. Do not forget about him next season as he was well deserving of his selection as the second overall pick in the 2013 draft. There are no Panthers still playing at the Olympics.

LOS ANGELES

Games this week

@ Colorado, @ Calgary, vs. Carolina

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Calgary (Friday)

Notes

The Kings play three games in four nights and Martin Jones could get two starts as Jonathan Quick is tending goal for the United States at the Olympics. The aforementioned Quick, Dustin Brown, Jeff Carter and Drew Doughty are still playing in Sochi. Doughty leads all Team Canada players in goals with four and Carter is second, just one behind. The Kings may have a tough time of it this week with all their stars (save for Anze Kopitar) tired as they have plenty of travel with trips to Colorado and Calgary before finally returning home.

MINNESOTA

Games this week

@ Edmonton, @ Vancouver

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Vancouver (Friday)

Notes

Jason Zucker had leg surgery during the Olympic break and will not play this week. Josh Harding is still out of action as he is dealing with multiple sclerosis and his status for the remainder of the season is up in the air. Darcy Kuemper will be the starter this week with Niklas Backstrom serving as his backup. Mikael Granlund has been outstanding for Finland at the Sochi games and he has shown the hockey world how talented he really is. Look for a big last quarter of the season and if he is unable to do so, do not forget about him next season. Granlund, Ryan Suter and Zach Parise are still playing at the Winter Olympics.

MONTREAL

Games this week

vs. Detroit, @ Pittsburgh, vs. Toronto

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Pittsburgh (Thursday)

Notes

The Canadiens play three games in four nights so look for both of their Olympics goalies, Carey Price and Peter Budaj to see action. Price, Max Pacioretty and P.K. Subban are still in the running for medals at the Winter Olympics. Alex Galchenyuk practiced on Wednesday for the first time since breaking his hand on January 6. He is questionable to return this week. Travis Moen is looking to play against Detroit on Wednesday after rehabbing his lower body injury during the break.

NASHVILLE

Games this week

vs. Tampa Bay, vs. Winnipeg

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

Pekka Rinne practiced on Wednesday for the first time since having surgery in late October for a hip infection. There is still no timetable for his return. After watching the ups and downs of Alexander Radulov during the Olympics, I'm sure that the Predators are happy not to be going through all the drama that he causes. Shea Weber, who has been outstanding for Canada on the blueline, is the only remaining Olympian for the Predators.

NEW JERSEY

Games this week

vs. Columbus, @ New York Islanders, vs. San Jose

Rested team: None

Tired Team: vs. San Jose (Sunday)

Notes

The Devils play three games in four nights so Martin Brodeur should get one start in place of Cory Schneider. Ryane Clowe did not practice on Thursday as he was suffering from 'general soreness' after participating in Wednesday's practice. Coach Peter DeBoer said that it was normal so expect Clowe to play against Columbus. Jonathan Merrill was sent to the minors after the Devils final game before the Olympics but they promoted him on Wednesday. There are no Devils still at the Olympics.

NEW YORK ISLANDERS

Games this week

vs. Toronto, vs. New Jersey, vs. Florida

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

The Islanders play three games in four nights so expect to see Kevin Poulin play once instead of Evgeni Nabokov. John Tavares suffered a season-ending knee injury during the Olympics. Brock Nelson practiced on the top line Thursday. Thomas Vanek had a terrible Olympics with only one assist and a minus-four rating for Austria in four games. Look for the Islanders to deal him at or before the trade deadline. With Tavares out of action, there are no Islanders remaining in Olympic play.

NEW YORK RANGERS

Games this week

vs. Chicago, @ Philadelphia, vs. Boston

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

The Rangers play three games in four nights and Cameron Talbot should see action in one game with Henrik Lundqvist playing in the other two.  Lundqvist has been terrific for the depleted Swedes as action heads into the semi-finals on Friday. Mats Zuccarello suffered a non-displaced fracture in his hand while playing for Norway at the Olympics and that will hurt the Rangers as he is expected to be out four weeks. Lundqvist, Carl Hagelin, Rick Nash, Ryan Callahan and Ryan McDonagh are still in the medal hunt at the Olympics.

OTTAWA     

Games this week

vs. Detroit, @ Vancouver

Rested team: vs. Detroit (Thursday)

Tired Team: None

Notes

Chris Phillips missed seven games before the break with a lower body injury but it looks like he might be able to return Thursday when the Senators take on Detroit. Erik Karlsson is the only Ottawa player still at the Olympics and he has been great with four goals and eight points heading into Sunday's gold medal match.

PHILADELPHIA

Games this week

vs. San Jose, vs. New York Rangers, @ Washington

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

The Flyers play three games in four nights so look for Ray Emery to get a start in place of Steve Mason. There was quite the incident in Sochi with the Austrian team as Michael Raffl apologized for the 'unprofessional' actions of himself and his teammates which included Thomas Vanek and Michael Grabner. Apparently most of the team went out drinking until 6 AM on Monday, with the Austrians slated to play Tuesday against Slovenia. The break should help Vincent Lecavalier as he has been suffering with back woes. There are not any Flyers still remaining in Sochi.

PHOENIX

Games this week

@ Winnipeg, @ Colorado, vs. St. Louis

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Colorado (Friday)

Notes

The Coyotes play three games in four nights and it is likely that Thomas Greiss will play once for Mike Smith. Smith, Lauri Korpikoski and Oliver Ekman-Larsson are still in the hunt for medals at the Olympics. Brandon Gormley was recalled by the Coyotes on Wednesday. Martin Hanzal was a healthy scratch for the Czech Republic against Sweden, one of many disturbing decisions made by the Czech hierarchy.

PITTSBURGH

Games this week

vs. Montreal, @ Chicago

Rested team: vs. Montreal (Thursday)

Tired Team: None

Notes

Kris Letang is not practicing as he suffered a small stroke in late January but the hope is that he will be able to return by the end of March. The news is better for Tomas Vokoun as he practiced on Wednesday for the first time since September when he needed a medical procedure to dissolve blood clots in his pelvis. Pascal Dupuis is out for the season but has started rehabbing his right knee which required surgery to repair a torn ACL and MCL. Sidney Crosby, Chris Kunitz, Paul Martin, Brooks Orpik, Jussi Jokinen and Olli Maatta are all still looking for an Olympic medal.

ST. LOUIS

Games this week

 @ Vancouver, @ Anaheim, @ Phoenix

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

The Blues have to be concerned with the way Jaroslav Halak was lit up at the Olympics. Brian Elliott could see a lot more action down the stretch. Vladimir Sobotka did not skate in practice on Thursday as suffered a broken knee on January 31 and is still not ready to return. St. Louis still has a lot of players in the medal chase at Sochi as David Backes, Patrik Berglund, the biggest star in the United States T.J. Oshie, Alexander Steen, Alex Pietrangelo, Kevin Shattenkirk and Jay Bouwmeester are still involved.

SAN JOSE

Games this week

@ Philadelphia, @ Buffalo, @ New Jersey

Rested team: @ New Jersey (Sunday)

Tired Team: @ Buffalo (Thursday)

Notes

The Sharks play three games in four nights so it's likely that Alex Stalock will get a start with Antti Niemi playing twice. Joe Pavelski got a huge break as he has been playing with Phil Kessel and James van Riemsdyk at the Olympics.  Dan Boyle played with a thumb injury his last five games before the break and the time off obviously will help. Pavelski, Patrick Marleau, Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Antti Niemi.

TAMPA BAY

Games this week

@ Nashville, @ Dallas, @ Colorado

Rested team: None

Tired Team: @ Colorado (Sunday)

Notes

The Lightning are one of 13 teams who play three games in four nights.  Anders Lindback is expected to return from an ankle injury and play once with Ben Bishop drawing the other two starts. Speaking of netminders, third string goalie Kristers Gudlevskis was outstanding as he stopped 55 shots in a 2-1 Latvian loss to Canada. It bodes well for the 21-year-old's future. Martin St. Louis is the only Lightning player still playing in Sochi. Steve Stamkos will have an x-ray taken early in the week and it will determine if he is able to play against Nashville. He has played only 17 games this season.

TORONTO

Games this week

@ New York Islanders, @ Montreal

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

Dave Bolland (ankle) suffered a sliced tendon in November and is finally getting close to a return as he practiced on Wednesday. The Maple Leafs came into the break as the hottest team in the NHL as they were 11-2-1 in their last 14. Phil Kessel and James van Riemsdyk are the only Maple Leafs still participating at the Olympics and they have been seeing first line minutes with Team USA. Kessel leads all Olympians with five goals.

VANCOUVER

Games this week

vs. St. Louis, vs. Minnesota, vs. Ottawa

Rested team: vs. Minnesota (Friday)

Tired Team: None

Notes

Alex Burrows has not had a good time of it this season and his injury woes continued as he sprained his hand during the Canucks last game before the break. He did not practice on Wednesday but is still expected to play against St. Louis. The Canucks lost their last seven games before the break and are now in serious trouble in the playoff race. Daniel Sedin, Ryan Kesler, Alexander Edler, Dan Hamhuis and Roberto Luongo are still participating in the  final weekend of Olympic competition.

WASHINGTON

Games this week

@ Florida, @ Boston, vs. Philadelphia

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

The Capitals play three times in four nights so look for Michal Neuvirth to get at least one start in relief of Braden Holtby who has struggled this season.  Alex Ovechkin is getting plenty of the blame for the poor showing by the Russians but blame a lack of defensemen and a serious lack of a proper system for the demise of the Russians at the Sochi Games. They played like individuals and the blame cannot be put on Ovechkin's shoulders. The problem is that he took the Russians loss at the 2010 Games hard and had only 20 points and a plus-two rating in 18 games after the Olympics compared to 89 points and a plus-43 in 54 games before the Vancouver Games. Mike Green could be ready for the Florida game  after missing five games before the break with a concussion. Mikhail Grabovski is also likely to play after missing eight games. Nicklas Backstrom, Marcus Johansson and John Carlson are still playing at the Olympics.

WINNIPEG

Games this week

vs. Phoenix, @ Nashville

Rested team: None

Tired Team: None

Notes

Olli Jokinen and Blake Wheeler are still in the medal hunt at Sochi. Evander Kane 's infected hand is completely healed and he should be ready to go against Phoenix. Tobias Enstrom isn't as fortunate as the defenseman has a lower body injury and did not practice this week. Mark Scheifele is out with the flu but should be fine for the Phoenix game. Jim Slater practiced on Wednesday. He has been out of the lineup since October 18th and underwent sports hernia surgery.

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