*Team records and Special Teams rankings accurate as of Thursday February 9th, 2012
Scorers to Pick-Up
Anaheim Ducks (21-24-8)
Home (15-13-2) Away (6-11-6) Last 10 (7-2-1)
Fri @ Det, Sun @ Clb
Luca Sbisa: 4 points in the last 5 games (if you can count the game against Calgary where he was tossed after 8 min) is a pretty consistant pace for a defenceman. The Ducks aren’t likely to beat the wings at the Joe Friday night but should have no trouble with the high flying (set sarcasm to 11) Blue Jackets on Sunday. Look for him to contribute in some way this weekend for the Ducks who are finally playing to their potential.
Buffalo Sabres (23-24-6)
Home (12-9-6) Away (11-15-0) Last 10 (4-5-1)
Fri vs Dal, Sat vs TB
Ville Leino: Finally earning his big money with 4 points in the last 4 games, big Ville style has woken up from his season long slumber. This weekend the Sabres should look to get something going against the slumping Stars and the leagues worst team in goals against per game Tampa Bay.
Paul Gaustad: Paully G (as nobody calls him) has 5 points in the last 4 games since coming off an upper body injury. Like Leino he has struggled this season and Lindy Ruff hasn’t found him a consistant line but they have made the best of things as of late. He won’t see much powerplay time but should be counted on for much needed secondary scoring for the Sabres.
Chicago Blackhawks (29-18-7)
Home (19-6-4) Away (10-12-0) Last 10 (3-5-2)
Fri @SJ, Sat @Phx
Viktor Stalberg: If you’re on a line with Hatty Kane and Captain Serious you get points, simple logic. The Hawks have been struggling keeping pucks out of their net and subsequently have not been winning (tougher logic). With two tough road games against strong defensive teams the Hawks will look to guys like Stalberg to take some of the pressure off the allstars.
Colorado Avalanche (27-25-3)
Home (15-13-1) Away (12-12-2) Last 10 (4-5-1)
Fri vs Car, Sat @StL
Ryan O’Reilly: 3 points in the last 4 games is helping the Avs stay competitive in the ultra tight Western Conference race. Looking at top end powerplay minutes and against one of the worst penalty killing teams in the league he should be able to contribute. St Louis might keep the electricity bill down this weekend by keeping the red light off.
Columbus Blue Jackets (15-32-6)
Home (9-13-3) Away (6-19-3) Last 10 (3-6-1)
Sat @ Min, Sun vs Anh
Vaclav Prospal: Vinny “Don’t call me Vaclav” Prospal is fresh off a fancy new contract extension in lavish Columbus but more relevant to your fantasy pursuits he has a nice little 3 game point streak (3 assists) going. Its tough to suggest the Blue Jackets will succeed at anything for any amount of time but I am going to gamble and say he might keep the magic alive this weekend.
Dallas Stars (27-23-2)
Home (15-10-2) Away (12-13-0) Last 10 (3-6-1)
Fri @ Buf, Sun vs LA
Mike Ribeiro: Captain of the swim team and occasional playmaker Ribero should be on the score sheet a bit more consistently but such is life for a team that doesn’t have a 20 goal scorer at this point in the season. Dallas needs a big weekend to stick around in the hunt for a playoff spot, so if Ribero feels like trying he might be able to help. He might not be available since he is owned in 58% of leagues but if not we have plenty of other suggestions here at weekend warriors so don’t worry your pretty little head.
Detroit Red Wings (36-17-2)
Home (21-2-1) Away (15-15-1) Last 10 (7-2-1)
Fri vs Anh, Sun vs Phi
Drew Miller: Miller time has been synonymous with celly time, 4 goals in the last 5 games for a third line winger is more than appreciated by the coaching staff. His claim to fame is normally that he blocks more shots than 50 cent but while he has always been a defence first player the goals keep coming. What is more impressive is that he is getting it all done in under 13 minutes a game. Depending on which face Bryzgalov decides to bring Sunday, Miller should see his name in more than just the lineup column on the game sheet.
LA Kings (26-18-10)
Home (15-11-4) Away (11-7-6) Last 10 (5-3-2)
Sat @ NYI, Sun @Dal
Dustin Penner: No relation to Fred, Dusty P has been labelled the biggest disappointment of the season by some. That being said, he has been getting more ice time of late, playing on a line with Jarrett Stoll and Mike Richards. Richards is a leader to the max, and should turn his game around this weekend with the playoffs increasingly in sight. Penner will benefit when Richards turns it up. Having connected in recent contests, this weekend could be key to this pair’s turnaround against two inferior opponents.
New York Islanders (22-22-8)
Home (11-11-5) Away (11-11-3) Last 10 (6-2-2)
Sat vs LA, Sun vs Fla
P.A. Parenteau: After he worships the shrine he has of John Tavares in his living room, he goes to the rink and puts up apples. No other 47 point player is gonna be just 59% owned in Yahoo! Leagues, and since he is playing on one of the hottest lines in hockey along side Tavares and Moulson, if Parenteau is available he is a no-brainer this weekend.
Kyle Okposo: Although we’re not quite sure whether the “k” in his last name is relevant to its pronunciation, we do know that Kyle-O is thriving with Tavares’ line drawing the tougher defensive match ups. Okposo has points in 13 of his last 18 games (15 points in that span), so his consistency has been excellent of late.
New York Rangers (33-13-5)
Home (16-6-2) Away (17-7-3) Last 10 (6-3-1)
Sat @ Phi, Sun vs Was
Derek Stepan: The Rangers’ PP has been a non-factor all year, so we’ll have to look at ice time and line combos for this one. He plays the majority of his 5-0n-5 time between Hagelin and Gaborik, and with the Slovakian Sniper potting 4 points in his past 3 games, Stepan could benefit from Gabby’s new found scoring surge. Heck, Stepan himself has 3 points in his past 5.
Philadelphia Flyers (30-16-7)
Home (12-8-5) Away (18-8-2) Last 10 (4-3-3)
Sat vs NYR, Sun @ Det
Wayne Simmonds: Simmer has been the best player on either side of the Mike Richards deal this past summer … who saw that coming? He’s got 17 goals and 31 points in just 16:01 minutes of TOI this year, but his PP opportunities are giving him those points. Philly’s 4th ranked PP benefits from his net presence, and he has averaged 3 minutes of PP time over the last 5 games, good for 5th on the team. Also, Simmonds has 4 points in as many games.
Pittsburgh Penguins (30-19-5)
Home (15-7-2) Away (15-12-3) Last 10 (7-2-1)
Sat vs Wpg, Sun vs TB
Chris Kunitz: It seems like a cop-out on our part to suggest Kunitz week after week because he plays on Malkin’s line and on one of the best PP units in the NHL. Can you really blame us though? He’s only owned in 55% of Yahoo! Leagues.
San Jose Sharks (29-16-6)
Home (17-9-2) Away (12-7-4) Last 10 (4-5-1)
Fri vs Chi, Sun @ StL
Jamie McGinn: With the Sharks’ offence so top-heavy, McGinn’s depth scoring of late has been crucial. Despite his disgusting jersey number (why would anyone chose #64?) he has 4 points in his past 4 contests. Further, he gets time on the 6th ranked PP unit in the NHL, and will be up against the 27th and 22nd PK units this weekend. Should be fun.
St. Louis Blues (31-14-7)
Home (22-3-4) Away (9-11-3) Last 10 (6-2-2)
Sat vs Col, Sun vs SJ
David Perron: When your PP is as bad as the Blues has been this season, you have to rely on even strength TOI and point production. Perron provides both, with close to 19 minutes a night and only 3 of his 19 points (in 27 games) coming on the PP. That being said, Colorado and San Jose have awful PK units and with the Blues virtually unbeatable at home Perron will get chances to turn his PP production around. He will have so many ways to score this weekend, and he’s coming off of a big 2-goal performance in Ottawa on Tuesday.
Tampa Bay Lightning (23-24-5)
Home (15-8-2) Away (8-16-3) Last 10 (6-3-1)
Sat @ Buf, Sun @ Pit