Every Monday during the season, NHL.com contributor Matt Sitkoff will provide you with fantasy hockey advice in his weekly piece: "Fantasy All-Access." From the waiver wire watch to roster trends and prospect rumblings, Sitkoff is here to help you all season long.
Here at the Fantasy All-Access we try to get fantasy owners ready for the week ahead, and if you are knee deep in your league's playoffs here are some schedule oddities you should pay attention to when making lineup choices this week.
The Boston Bruins (four), Chicago Blackhawks (three), Colorado Avalanche (three) and Winnipeg Jets (three) play all their games this week at home. The Columbus Blue Jackets (four), Florida Panthers (four) and Detroit Red Wings (two) play all their games on the road this week.
With that in mind, pay attention to the road/home splits of players from those teams. Players like Avalanche forward Matt Duchene , who has 24 of his 39 points and 15 of his 16 goals this season at the Pepsi Center, and Tomas Fleischmann of the Florida Panthers , who has five of his nine goals this season on the road, see their value rise this week.
WAIVER WIRE WATCH
SOG: 75 | +/-: 4
Trevor Daley (owned in 2 percent of Yahoo! leagues) -- Another team in the Western Conference making an improbable run toward the playoffs has fantasy owners wishing they picked up hot-shot rookie Alex Chiasson , but stock of one of their top defenders is also rising. The 29-year-old Daley has five points, a plus-6 and is playing over 23 minutes a game in his last five games. The Stars have four games this week (@CHI, VAN, @STL, @LAK), and if they are to stay in the playoff hunt Daley will need to continues his hot play, which could help you in your fantasy playoff push.
Travis Zajac (owned in 14 percent of Yahoo! leagues) -- While the Devils are freefalling and Ilya Kovalchuk is expected to miss his 10th straight game on Monday, don't sleep on the 27-year-old Zajac. The Devils have four games scheduled this week (@TOR, @PHI, FLA, @NYR), with three of them against teams ranked in the bottom half of the NHL in goals against, and in the last one he plays the Rangers, a team against which he has 20 career points in 37 games. If Kovalchuk is back by the end of the week, having those back-to-back games on Saturday and Sunday could be a difference in your weekly matchup.
GAA: 2.64 | SVP: 0.894
Filip Forsberg , Nashville Predators -- The Swedish forward surprisingly dropped to the 11th pick of the 2012 NHL Draft despite being the top-rated European skater by Central Scouting. Even more surprisingly, Forsberg was traded by the Washington Capitals at the Trade Deadline for Martin Erat and now he has arrived, making his NHL debut Sunday for the Nashville Predators vs. Detroit. The third-youngest player to suit up for the Predators, at 18 year, 8 months and 1 day, played 18:37 with 2:12 on the power play in his much-anticipated NHL debut. Although the Predators have only two games this week (VAN, @CHI), he is worth a pick-up as he got top-line minutes and power-play time, and will have the young legs to inject some much needed offense to Nashville and your fantasy team.
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