The Fantasy Hockey Daily Roundup highlights the most prominent fantasy hockey news in the NHL. It provides analysis Monday through Friday on the fantasy implications of the day’s biggest stories.
Johansson, DeBrusk Out; Cehlarik Moves Up
Marcus Johansson is out for at least a week with a lung contusion, opening the door for Peter Cehlarik (0% Owned) to jump back into the top-six. Jake DeBrusk (lower-body) was also announced as a late scratch for tonight’s game against the Panthers. David Krejci saw a real jump in his offensive numbers when skating alongside Cehlarik earlier in the year. The Bruins are averaging 35 scoring chances per 60 with Krejci and Cehlarik on the ice. It’s a drastic improvement over the 26 scoring chances per 60 Krejci averages away from Cehlarik. Krejci (37% owned) is worthy of a pickup, and Cehlarik could be a decent spot-start if you’re desperate to get some extra games into your lineup tonight. Danton Heinen (11% owned) is the best bet to assume DeBrusk’s spot on the first power-play unit.
Bobrovsky to Rest on Thursday
Having started eight games in the last 14 days, Bobrovsky will be held out of the lineup against Pittsburgh tonight. Joonas Korpisalo (5% Owned) will get the start and Keith Kinkaid will back him up. You don’t see this very often in the NHL, but John Tortorella is making the most of having three NHL-caliber goaltenders on the roster. If you own Bobrovsky, you shouldn’t be overly upset or worried about him not dressing tonight. He owns a 2.93 GAA and a .906 SV% against the Penguins in his career. He’ll get another shot to take on Pittsburgh at home on Saturday for the latter half of the home-and-home.
Lehner Out; Add Greiss
New York Islanders netminder Robin Lehner was forced to leave Tuesday’s game after colliding with Ottawa Senators forward Brady Tkachuk. The Islanders recalled Christopher Gibson from Bridgeport (AHL) which suggests that Lehner will not travel to Ottawa for Thursday’s game. That leaves Thomas Greiss (60% Owned) as the Islanders’ unquestioned No.1 goalie until Lehner is back to 100 percent. Greiss will obviously be a must-start in Ottawa and is a solid option against the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday.
WOW. Was ein Save ⚡️ Thomas Greiss 🆚 Alex Ovechkin! Sieger: 🇩🇪 pic.twitter.com/TTouHQgIEv
— NHL Deutsch (@NHLde) March 2, 2019
The Islanders have improved drastically in their own-end under head coach Barry Trotz. It has led to the Islanders leading the NHL in Goals Against/gm (2.36) and 5v5 Save Percentage (.936). Individually, Greiss is 18-10-2 while tying for third in the NHL in SV% (.928) and ranking fourth in GAA (2.23). His owned percentage has been held down because he is splitting time with Lehner but now that the he is hurt, Greiss becomes a must-own as we head into the Fantasy Hockey Playoffs.
Larkin Day-to-Day for Detroit
Larkin will not play against the Rangers on Thursday due to a lingering back injury. He’s considered day-to-day and is questionable to play this weekend. Jacob de la Rose (0% Owned) is expected to take Larkin’s spot on the top line tonight. He’ll skate between Anthony Mantha (33% Owned) and Tyler Bertuzzi (5% Owned).
While they are technically the first line, I imagine ice time will be split evenly among Detroit’s top-nine so long as Larkin as out. I certainly wouldn’t recommend rushing to the wire to pick up de la Rose, and any value Bertuzzi might have had skating alongside Mantha and Larkin is gone. If there’s a positive spin to be put on this, it’s that Andreas Athanasiou (17% Owned) should see a bump in playing time in Larkin’s absence. The 24-year-old has 22 goals and 17 assists in 60 games despite an ATOI of 16:19. Consider picking him up if you need some help down the middle.
The Red Wings also announced Mike Green (virus) will miss the rest of the season. The illness was originally expected to keep Green out of the lineup for 7-10 days, but a specialist recommended additional rest. Green’s season will end with an impressive total of five goals and 21 assists in just 43 games.
Radulov Back in after Benching
Alexander Radulov will re-enter the Stars’ lineup tonight after missing Tuesday’s game for disciplinary reasons. Radulov showed up late for Dallas’ morning skate and was benched as a result. He’s expected to resume his spot skating alongside Tyler Seguin and Roope Hintz. Hintz (0% owned) could be worth streaming in deeper leagues so long as he’s skating with the top line. In addition to his first-line role, he’s been on the first power-play unit with Seguin, Radulov, Jamie Benn, and John Klingberg.
Kane/Karlsson remain sidelined for Sharks
Evander Kane (upper-body) and Erik Karlsson (groin) will not play against the Canadiens on Thursday. It marks the third-straight absence for Kane, but he did take part in San Jose’s practice on Wednesday. He could return to the lineup as early as Saturday’s game vs. the Blues. Kevin Labanc (18% owned) will remain in the Sharks’ top-six, skating alongside Tomas Hertl and Joonas Donskoi on the second line. Labanc is a prominent member of San Jose’s first power-play unit. This promotion is enough to put him back on the fantasy radar for the short-term. He has 11 goals and 32 assists in 66 games and carries dual-wing eligibility in Yahoo! leagues. His ability to put up quality numbers despite an ATOI of 13:42 suggests a breakout could be looming for Labanc.
Karlsson’s lingering groin issue will cause him to miss at least the next two games. The earliest he could return would be for next Monday’s game against the Flyers. Tim Heed will continue to draw into the lineup in place of Karlsson. Marc-Edouard Vlasic (6% owned) should see an uptick in power-play time until Karlsson is able to return.