Daily Fantasy 3 Stars 01/09/2010

01/10/2010
Pittsburgh Penguins v Philadelphia Flyers

In this section, I break down the top three fantasy hockey performers every night and cite why I chose them in particular. In addition, I will track the amount of times the players have received this honor and tally them at the end of the season. For the sake of clarity, I will be using Yahoo! standard categories (Forwards – G,A,+/-, PP, PIM, SOG; Goalies – W, GAA, SV%, SHO) and thus exclude player’s salaries.

Big, big night in hockey with 13 games and 26 teams in action.  We witnessed a blow out and even a laser pointer fiasco out west.  Cheap plug but our goalie starters went 26/26.  Here are our standout fantasy stars for January 9, 2010:

THIRD STAR:  Tom Poti, Washington Capitals (0-0-1) –Poti helped the Capitals make short work of their division rivals, with a 8-1 route of the Thrashers.  The 32-year-old veteran defenseman scored a powerplay goal and assisted on two more giving him three points on the evening.  In a little under 22 minutes of ice time he also fired three shots on net while finishing the game with a perfect plus-two rating.

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December Fantasy 3 Stars

01/02/2010
Montreal Canadiens v New York Islanders

In this section, I break down the top three fantasy hockey performers for the month and cite why I chose them in particular. In addition, I will track the amount of times the players have received this honor and tally them at the end of the season. For the sake of clarity, I will be using Yahoo! standard categories (Forwards – G,A,+/-, PP, PIM, SOG; Goalies – W, GAA, SV%, SHO) which also excludes player salaries.

THIRD STAR: Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks (0-0-1) –  The 21-year-old right wing turned in an impressive and dominating month, finishing with 19 points, eight of which were goals.  The Buffalo, New York native fired a whopping 57 shots on goal over the month, tied with Ovechkin, an equally impressive feat.  His six powerplay points helped his owners as did a plus seven rating over that span.  Not know for his physical play, 20 cent even contributed four penalty minutes.  Throughout the year the former first overall stabilized his efforts becoming much more of a consistent scoring threat.  He will try to continue his scoring prowess when he represents Team USA in the Olympics this February.

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Caps, Jackets Play Lets Make a Deal

12/28/2009
Columbus Blue Jackets v New York Rangers

The Washington Capitals and Columbus Blue Jackets officially make a deal in which Columbus sends solid left wing Jason Chimera in exchange for depth defenseman Milan Jurcina and surprisingly team captain Chris Clark

The Capitals receive probably the best player of the bunch in Chimera, who last year would have posted career highs had he stayed healthy.  The 30-year-old veteran carries a reasonable 1.875 cap hit, a fair price for a grinding wing who shows the ability to put up points.

Clark, now the former captain of the Caps, admits to being shocked he was traded.  This trade may mark the first time a first-place team traded away their captain, however it was the smart move.  The 33-year-old sported a hefty 2.633 million cap hit this year and next, something a contending team simply should not pay for considering he posted two less points than Chimera.

In Jurcina the Jackets get a warm body on the blue line, something they needed since Rostislav Klesla went down at the beginning of the month.  More importantly the Blue Jackets shake the team up, as they promised they would do.  Used mainly as a depth defenseman, Jurcina posted four helpers in 27 games while carrying a 1.375 cap hit.

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Alexander Semin Signs One Year Extension

12/27/2009
Washington Capitals vs Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh

As Tarik El-Bashir of The Washington Post reports left wing turned right wing Alexander Semin signed a one year extension worth six million dollars.  Definitely a smart move to lock up a player the caliber of this young man.

Semin receives a slight raise from his reasonable five million dollar salary while avoiding either an arbitration hearing or offer sheet temptation.  The 25-year-old certainly put the production up to deserve a raise, arguably even into the 7 million dollar range.  In his last 91 games the native of Krasjonarsk posted 111 points, well over a PPG range.

What does this mean for Semin?

Earlier in the week there was speculation on Semin, amongst others, moving to Atlanta in a swap for Ilya Kovalchuk.  Although this deal seems incredibly far-fetched and unlikely, signing Semin to an extension would make him more attractive to a team receiving him.

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Final Destination: Scott Niedermayer

12/23/2009
Anaheim Ducks v Philadelphia Flyers

Some players around the League find themselves at a career crossroad.  A crossroad with tough decisions to make regarding ongoing speculation of their final season.  Speculation whether to stay on a sinking ship and finish at the bottom of the sea or leaving one’s comfort zone in an attempt to stay on top.  Certainly no easy decision for any player

While Scott Niedermayer ponders his future in hockey he continues another solid year in his famed career.  The same cannot be said for the Anaheim Ducks, who sit 13th in the Western Conference despite coming off a come from behind victory against the Colorado Avalanche.  The team finds themselves as of this writing a mere five points behind the eighth seed.

The asking price for the captain should be reasonable, as he would strictly be a playoff rental.  However, GM Brian Murray can  acquire a potential piece or pieces to build for a brighter future in sunny Anaheim.

A quick look around the league shows there are a few teams in need of Niedermayer’s services. At 37, he still is one of the best defensemen in the game and a huge piece for a few teams looking for that extra push into serious cup contention.

Lets take a closer look at which teams could trade for Niedermayer in order to bring home Lord Stanley’s Cup.  Even though he already carries four Stanley Cup rings to his credit, every player in this league starts the season with one goal in mind.

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Kovalchuk and Ovechkin Together?

12/23/2009
Russia v Canada - Gold Medal Game

If you listened to the Team 1040 AM stream like I did, you would know new rumors around Ilya Kovalchuk continue to spread like wildfire.

The newest and latest rumors discussed are the Washington Capitals as front runners in the Kovalchuk sweepstakes.  Interestingly enough, David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period says as much as Kovalchuk loves Atlanta, there are bigger issues there in hindsight.

Going back to the 1040 AM discussion, Washington as an organization boasts numerous movable assets.  Since the permanent Michael Nylander demotion, a fair amount of open cap space opened up for the club so perhaps they have both the room and assets necessary to acquire the services of Kovalchuk.

Naturally the centerpeice would have to be either Alexander Semin or Nicklas Backstrom along with another player like Eric Fehr.   Kovalchuk should claim a bounty larger than that of former teammate Marian Hossa, so there would need to be work on both sides.

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Weekly Fantasy 3 Stars – Week Ending 12/13/2009

12/14/2009
Washington Capitals v Toronto Maple Leafs

Similar to our Daily 3 Stars, this section will break down the top three fantasy hockey performers every week and cite why I chose them in particular. In addition, I will track the amount of times the players have received this honor and tally them at the end of the season. For the sake of clarity, I will be using Yahoo! standard categories (Forwards – G,A,+/-, PP, PIM, SOG; Goalies – W, GAA, SV%, SHO) and therefore omit salaries.

THIRD STAR: Kyle Okposo, New York Islanders (0-0-1) –  Okposo became a powerplay specialist, helping John Tavares to score a plethora of goals on the man advantage.  In three games, the 22-year-old posted six assists five of which coming on the powerplay.  The St. Paul, Minnesota native fired eleven shots on goal averaging nearly four a game, despite his lack of goals.  Scoring at a two PPG clip over the past week makes him our third star of the week.

SECOND STAR: Daniel Sedin, Vancouver Canucks (0-1-0) – The winging Sedin brother is putting his earlier injury behind him.  The native of Ornskoldsvik, Sweden produced five goals and two assists over his last three games, a solid week to say the least.  Two of his seven points came on the powerplay while he fired a massive 22 shots on goal.  The 29-year-old posted a nice plus two over that span making him a good choice for second star of the week.

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