Fantasy HockeyJosh Kay

2013 Fantasy Hockey Forecaster, Week 5: Game Picks and Sleepers

As the National Hockey League rolls on towards Week 5, we here at The Fix want to make sure you are ready to plan ahead for your weekly lock lineup leagues as well as your weekly salary cap games. Here’s a look ahead to the games this coming week and some start/sit musings.

Before we review the week ahead, let’s check in with our game pick predictions for last week in the NHL:

We went 28-16 on the week and now improve to 81-51 on the season picking games!

With that kind of a record, it should be evident to you, the reader, that we know our hockey here at the Fix! Make the shrewd move by becoming a Fantasy Fix Front Office member. It costs just $0.04 a day, or the equivalent of $1.27 per month! For more information, visit http://thefantasyfix.com/why-subscribe/

Some of our excellent upset picks that we hit on last week are as follows (our pick and the winner of the game is in bold):

Vancouver @ Columbus, Colorado @ Pittsburgh, Ottawa @ Detroit, Chicago @ Tampa Bay, New York Islanders @ Pittsburgh, Toronto @ Columbus, Washington @ Calgary

Monday October 28th:

DAL @ BUF: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Dallas

PIT @ CAR: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Pittsburgh

MTL @ NYR: 7:30 p.m. Our pick- New York Rangers

CHI @ MIN: 8:00 p.m. Our pick- Chicago

WSH @ VAN: 10:00 p.m. Our pick- Vancouver

Tuesday October 29th:

NYR @ NYI: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- New York Islanders

ANA @ PHI: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Philadelphia

DAL @ MTL: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Montreal

TB @ NJ: 7:30 p.m. Our pick- Tampa Bay

OTT @ CHI: 8:00 p.m. Our pick- Ottawa

WPG @ STL: 8:00 p.m. Our pick- St. Louis

TOR @ EDM: 9:00 p.m. Our pick- Toronto

LA @ PHX: 10:00 p.m. Our pick- Phoenix

Wednesday October 30th:

BOS @ PIT: 8:00 p.m. Our pick- Pittsburgh

TOR @ CGY: 8:00 p.m. Our pick- Calgary

DET @ VAN: 10:30 p.m. Our pick- Vancvouer

SJ @ LA: 10:30 p.m. Our pick- San Jose

Thursday October 31st:

ANA @ BOS: 7:00 p.m. Or pick- Boston

BUF @ NYR: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- New York Rangers

NSH @ PHX: 10:00 p.m. Our pick- Phoenix

Friday November 1st:

WSH @ PHI: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Washington

CBJ @ PIT: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Pittsburgh

TB @ CAR: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Tampa Bay

NYI @ OTT: 7:30 p.m. Our pick- Ottawa

STL @ FLA: 7:30 p.m. Our pick- St. Louis

MTL @ MIN: 8:00 p.m. Our pick- Minnesota

COL @ DAL: 8:30 p.m. Our pick- Colorado

DET @ CGY: 9:00 p.m. Our pick- Detroit

Saturday November 2nd:

CHI @ WPG: 3:00 p.m. Our pick- Chicago

ANA @ BUF: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Anaheim

STL @ TB: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Tampa Bay

PHI @ NJ: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- New Jersey

BOS @ NYI: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- New York Islanders

CAR @ NYR: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- New York Rangers

FLA @ WSH: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Washington

PIT @ CBJ: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Columbus

TOR @ VAN: 7:00 p.m. Our pick- Vancouver

MTL @ COL: 10:00 p.m. Our pick- Colorado

DET @ EDM: 10:00 p.m. Our pick- Edmonton

NSH @ LA: 10:30 p.m. Our pick- LA

PHX @ SJ: 10:30 p.m. Our pick- SJ

Sunday November 3rd:

DAL @ OTT: 1:00 p.m. Our pick- Ottawa

CGY @ CHI: 7:30 p.m. Our pick- Chicago

NJ @ MIN: 8:00 p.m. Our pick- Minnesota

Games by Team:

Four games- Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins

Three games- Anaheim Ducks, Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes, Colorado Avalanche, Columbus Blue Jackets, Detroit Red Wings, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild, New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, Ottawa Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, Phoenix Coyotes, St. Louis Blues, Tampa Bay Lightning, Vancouver Canucks, Washington Capitals

Two games- Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Nashville Predators, San Jose Sharks, Winnipeg Jets

Last week we wrote, for Friday’s Islanders @ Penguins matchup that, “This means that Islanders forwards are all must starts. Kyle Okposo (29.3% owned) and Frans Nielsen (64.6% owned) have been excellent on the young season and needed to be added in general, not just for this game. A deep league option, or for those in daily salary cap leagues, is Josh Bailey. The 24-year-old former first-round pick is off to a rip-roaring start, rattling off seven points and a plus-4 rating so far for the Isles.”

Bailey scored the game-winning goal, Frans Nielsen had three points (a goal and two assists) and Okposo added an assist as well. The trio combined for five points and a plus-3 plus/minus rating and nine shots on net.

This week there is a vast array of back-to-back games that demand our attention.

Monday- Dallas Stars @ Buffalo Sabres

Tuesday- Dallas Stars @ Montreal Canadiens

Spin: Dallas will be looking ahead on the schedule to the Montreal Canadiens, and they may well give goaltender Kari Lehtonen a break Monday against Buffalo. The 29-year-old Lehtonen has started each of the Stars’ past two games since coming off injured reserve with a lower-body injury. Should the native of Helsinki, Finland sit, backup net-minder Dan Ellis will get the call. Ellis has been nothing if not underwhelming so far, but facing the Sabres should cure all of his problems. The 33-year-old Saskatoon native is only owned in 0.9% of ESPN.com leagues.

Wednesday- Boston Bruins @ Pittsburgh Penguins

Thursday- Anaheim Ducks @ Boston Bruins

Spin: The Boston Bruins have a brutal back-to-back against two teams that have a combined record of 15-7 — although both of these teams (Anaheim and Pittsburgh) do have some problems right now — and then face the New York Islanders on Saturday for three games in four nights. Goaltender Tuukka Rask has started in every game except October 23rd against Buffalo. That game was the first of what would be a back-to-back as the Bruins welcomed in the San Jose Sharks the following night. Manning the net against Buffalo was backup goaltender Chad Johnson who got the win, but allowed two goals on just 16 shots.  Should Johnson start either of these games, there are forwards on the Penguins and Ducks that should be picked up. For the Penguins, Jussi Jokinen is available in a small amount of leagues (96.9% owned) and Brandon Sutter is an option for deep leagues. Sutter is owned in 0.9% of leagues and has four assists on the year. If Johnson starts against the Ducks, center Nick Bonino, who is owned in 3.2% of leagues, has four goals and two assists on the year and is a shrewd pickup. Additionally, Patrick Maroon, a power-forward, skated with Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf on the first line against the Ottawa Senators in Anaheim’s most recent game. Maroon has a goal in each of his past two games and assists in the two before that as well. The four game point streak is an NHL career high for the 25-year-old from St. Louis, Missouri.

Friday- St. Louis Blues @ Florida Panthers

Saturday- Florida Panthers @ Washington Capitals

Spin: For whatever reason the NHL decided that it was a good idea to make the Panthers play Sunday, then have four off days before playing again at home and then going all the way to Washington DC the very next day to play the Capitals. This scenario spells blowout no matter how you twist it. Washington forwards Mikhail Grabovski (9 points and 45.8% owned), Marcus Johnasson (10 assists, 45.4% owned), and Troy Brouwer (61.6% owned) are all excellent adds for the week. Weekly league owners of Panthers players should highly consider sitting them, given two poor matchups.

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