Fantasy Hockey Schedule Week 18: Who Will You Gamble On?

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Fantasy Hockey Schedule Week 18: Who Will You Gamble On?
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Week 18 is the first week after the All-Star weekend, and even though it starts on Tuesday, most teams still play three or four games.

Some tough decisions need to be made this week. 

First, the Washington Capitals play four games this week, which means Alexander Ovechkin will play two games this week once his suspension is over.  So do you dress Ovechkin or not?  The way he is playing would indicate yes, you dress him, as he could score more in two games then another player in three or four games.  The last time Ovechkin returned from a suspension he scored points in back-to-back games. 

Another tough decision will come if you have a goaltender from the Pittsburgh Penguins or the Capitals, as both teams play two sets of back-to-backs.  Will the games be split or will one goalie play more?  Marc-Andre Fleury would have a better shot at playing three or four games compared to Michal Neuvirth or Tomas Vokoun.

Some tough decisions to be made, and I hope your gambles pay off.  Here are the games to be played in week 18:

 

GP 

MON 

TUE 

WED 

THU 

FRI 

SAT 

SUN 

ANAHEIM 

3

 

@PHO

DAL

 

CBJ

 

 

BOSTON 

4

 

OTT

 

CAR

 

PIT

@WAS

BUFFALO 

3

 

@MON

NYR

 

 

@NYI

 

CALGARY 

2

 

DET

 

 

CHI

 

 

CAROLINA 

3

 

NYI

 

@BOS

 

LA

 

CHICAGO 

3

 

@VAN

 

@EDM

@CGY

 

 

COLORADO 

3

 

@EDM

 

MIN

 

VAN

 

COLUMBUS 

3

 

@SJ

@LA

 

@ANA

 

 

DALLAS 

3

 

 

@ANA

@SJ

 

MIN

 

DETROIT 

3

 

@CGY

 

@VAN

 

@EDM

 

EDMONTON 

3

 

COL

 

CHI

 

DET

 

FLORIDA 

3

 

 

WAS

 

WPG

@TB

 

LOS ANGELES 

3

 

 

CBJ

 

@STL

@CAR

 

MINNESOTA 

3

 

NAS

 

@COL

 

@DAL

 

MONTREAL 

4

 

BUF

 

@NJ

 

WAS

WPG

NASHVILLE 

3

 

@MIN

 

@PHI

 

STL

 

NEW JERSEY 

4

 

NYR

 

MON

 

@PHI

PIT

NY ISLANDERS 

3

 

@CAR

 

 

@OTT

BUF

 

NY RANGERS 

3

 

@NJ

@BUF

 

 

 

PHI

OTTAWA 

3

 

@BOS

 

 

NYI

TOR

 

PHILADELPHIA 

4

 

WPG

 

NAS

 

NJ

@NYR

PHOENIX 

2

 

ANA

 

 

 

SJ

 

PITTSBURGH 

4

 

TOR

@TOR

 

 

@BOS

@NJ

SAN JOSE 

3

 

CBJ

 

DAL

 

@PHO

 

ST. LOUIS 

2

 

 

 

 

LA

@NAS

 

TAMPA BAY 

3

 

WAS

 

WPG

 

FLA

 

TORONTO 

3

 

@PIT

PIT

 

 

@OTT

 

VANCOUVER 

3

 

CHI

 

DET

 

@COL

 

WASHINGTON 

4

 

@TB

@FLA

 

 

@MON

BOS

WINNIPEG 

4

 

@PHI

 

@TB

@FLA

 

@MON

When it comes to dressing your players for the upcoming week – especially your goalies – it is important to know which team is on a long road trip and which team is enjoying an extended period at home.

Listed below are the teams that play at least three home/away games this week or play all their games at home or on the road (home/road records up to January 27, 2012):

HOME: Boston (16-7-2), Calgary (13-7-2), Edmonton (12-8-3), Montreal (9-9-7), New Jersey (12-9-2), Philadelphia (11-7-3), Phoenix (10-9-4) and Tampa Bay (13-7-1)

AWAY: Chicago (10-9-2), Columbus (5-17-3), Detroit (13-14-0), Pittsburgh (14-10-2), Washington (8-13-2) and Winnipeg (7-14-4)

If you participate in any type of head-to-head hockey pool, you are likely dressing a lineup for each scoring period, which usually ends on Sunday.

As the week comes to an end, and you find yourself in a close battle for those wins, you want as many players as possible playing for you.

Here are the teams that play on Sunday (February 5, 2012):

SUNDAY: Boston, Montreal, New Jersey, New York R, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Washington and Winnipeg

When you are deciding which goalie to dress, you need to look at the NHL schedule to see if your goalie's team will play in a back-to-back game that week.

Most coaches will not dress the same goalie in back-to-back games, so that is something to consider when you are thinking about which goalie to dress. 

Here are the teams that play in back-to-back games this week:

BACK-TO-BACK: Anaheim, Boston, Buffalo, Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Florida, Los Angeles, Montreal, New Jersey, New York I, New York R, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh (twice), St. Louis, Toronto, Washington (twice) and Winnipeg.

Knowing which team is on a hot streak or cold streak will help in making your lineup decisions. 

For example, you definitely want to dress a goalie from teams that are on a hot streak. Here are the top five and bottom five teams over their last 10 games up to January 27, 2012:

TOP FIVE: Nashville (9-1-0), Anaheim (8-1-1), Detroit (8-2-0), St. Louis (7-1-2) and New York R (7-3-0)

BOTTOM FIVE: Buffalo (2-7-1), Edmonton (2-6-2), Winnipeg (3-6-1), Columbus (3-6-1) and Minnesota (3-6-1)

Fantasy hockey is all about offense, and what better place to generate offense then the power play. Here are the top five power plays up to January 27, 2012:

Vancouver Canucks: 23.0 percent
Nashville Predators: 22.5 percent
Edmonton Oilers: 21.3 percent
Philadelphia Flyers: 20.4 percent
Toronto Maple Leafs: 19.6 percent

 

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Aaron Brouwer is the co-creator of www.fantasyhockeycoach.com.  FHC is a free fantasy hockey service that developed a ranking system combining post-lockout statistics, current factors and our own hockey knowledge.  Brouwer writes about fantasy hockey on Bleacher Report. You can contact Coach Brouwer at brouwer@fantasyhockeycoach.com.

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