Welcome to the second edition of FHS: Saturday Night Live! If you're just tuning in now, last Saturday we had some fun with a live blog, part of which included an over/under + pick ‘em competition between myself, Cam Collingwood and Michael Benedicks from FHS, as well as FHS reader/poster Mjm44. The delightfully acerbic MasterOfPuppets joined in part way through as well (and kicked our asses on the late games).
This week, we extended the invite for friends and readers to submit their own picks for today's twelve game slate. And so, today you'll see nineteen fantasy GMs going toe-to-toe (toes-to-toes? weird...) in a battle royale for the ages. Or, well, at least a mild distraction on a Saturday filled to the gills with your good friend and mine: NHL hockey. Today's champion(s) will be honoured in Monday's Fantasy Stars of the Week feature, and the resulting glory and fame will all but secure a supermodel girlfriend and a lifetime of forgetting about the little people.
I will continue to update today's blog (refresh for updates) throughout the day with fantasy highlights, random commentary and select tweets from around the hockey world. Feel free to chime in with any comments, criticism, banter, wins or insults you'd like to share.
I may also disappear for long stretches of time, depending on the number and variety of beverages consumed. And I have to miss the late game, as my s̶u̶p̶e̶r̶v̶i̶s̶o̶r̶ wife and I have plans that are apparently more important than spending twelve hours straight watching hockey. Go figure.
After the jump, we'll look at today's games and check out everyone's picks via our latest technological marvel: a web-published Google spreadsheet! Oh! Wow....
With half of today's games finishing by 5pm EST, maybe we should just call this Saturday Live? Here's the slate:
Nashville Predators @ Boston Bruins
Florida Panthers @ New Jersey Devils
Los Angeles Kings @ New York Islanders
New York Rangers @ Philadelphia Flyers
Winnipeg Jets @ Pittsburgh Penguins
Edmonton Oilers @ Ottawa Senators
Tampa Bay Lightning @ Buffalo Sabres
Montreal Canadiens @ Toronto Maple Leafs
Colorado Avalanche @ St. Louis Blues
Columbus Blue Jackets @ Minnesota Wild
Chicago Blackhawks @ Phoenix Coyotes
Vancouver Canucks @ Calgary Flames
We asked you for:
1. Your pick for the winning team for each game (H = home win, V = visitor win)
2. Your pick for over or under for each game (O = over, U = under), based on an over/under of 5.5 goals.
The scoring system is simple: for every winner picked correctly, one point is awarded. For every over/under picked correctly, one point is awarded. So with 12 games on today's schedule, a perfect score would be 24 points.
And here, dear readers, is the scoreboard:
Due to the extreme limitations of the SBNation Story Editor (or more likely my extreme lack of effort)), I was unable to find a decent way to update the slate "in-post", but I think this will work for now. Let me know ff you have other ideas, or if you happen to be an HTML genius who will work for free.
I had a quick look at the picks, and it speaks to the NHL's parity that we're totally all over the place. There are a few trends though: unanimous under votes for the STL/COL match, whitch (see what I did there?) makes sense. Scottymac228 could build a real edge with that game though, as only he picked Colorado to win. Mjm44 and Timbits56 have the only over picks for LAK/NYI. Only Cam and scottymac228 picked the Jets to beat the Penguins. Only two under votes (Cam and tzuu) for the VAN/CGY game, which is a bit surprising considering the goalies involved. And Columbus actually managed five picks to win - possibly their biggest self-esteem bost of the season.
But, enough. Puck drops in 30 minutes. Buckle the fuck up.
Tim Thomas confirmed to start today. Enough of Julien's last minute antics!
So Rinne/Thomas coming right up. Excellent. I own TT in a keeper and look the other way at his tea party politics, but all this Facebook shit is just stupid. He is so rattled, and rattled goalies do not stop pucks. I hope he has that rebound game, but in reality Nashville scores four+ on him, unless Chara's in absolute lockdown mode.
You never know just how you look through other people's eyes.
I've had Mike Richards and Dustin Brown benched for about a week now. G A +/- PIM PPP SOG. These are crazy, crazy actions, but Simmonds and Clarkson are the smarter plays for me right now. This worm will turn again, but when?
Question: with nineteen entries in our little comp today, I sense the strong likelihood of a tie. So what's the tiebreaker?
That's right MoP - delightfully acerbic. Pour some of that syrup on your goddamn hotcakes.
Last night I thought I had a genius moment: change my SBNation handle to Kenny Bloggins! I kind of got stuck with jsuites anyway (long story), and Kenny Bloggins is fucking hilarious! Then I googled Kenny Bloggins, and my genius moment was downgraded to just a regular moment.
Thank you, leftwinglock.com, for your starting goalie push notifications. Brilliant. It would be wrong not to also mention Justin Goldman from Goaliepost / Dobber. I'm subscribed to Justin Goldman's email updates, which I find invaluable.
I was going to get my two year-old daughter to submit her picks this week, but her schedule was too packed.. Next week....
Sestito and Bickel wailing on each other. Good scrap, refs stepped in too soon.
As per MSG Network, NYR and PHI have had nine fights head-to-head this season. Most in the NHL.
Ryan Callahan puts the Rangers ahead with his second PPG in two games, those goals breaking a four game pointless skid, but he's still 5+2=7 over his last ten.
Wayne Simmonds (see above) tips in the point shot. Game tied 1-1.
Bruins are outshooting the Predators 13-5. Still no goals. Rinne is superhuman.
Simmonds now has six goals in his last ten games, and the PIM are starting to flow again as he's got nine in that same span. Hoping for a bunch more today.
Patrice Bergeron with a shorty for his 16th of the year. Was anyone really expecting 70 points out of him this year? Actually I think TSN projected him at 72, so there you go. Bs up one zip.
End of the first in Boston, Jersey, Long Island and Philly. Puck drops in 10 minutes in Pittsburgh and Ottawa. What's wrong with Saturdays? Nothing.
I think EDM OTT could be a goalfest. Most of us agree, as only Johnny Laan and MasterOfPuppets took the under there.
This from mjm44, and I have to concur on all levels: "Please insure scattered start times so that every game is not on intermission at same time. Signed, a loserish hockey blogger." But I'm mostly concurring with the loserish hockey blogger part.
Giroux, Simmonds and Hartnell ALL on PP1?? Laviolette is kind of awesome for that.
Wow, Giroux FORCED that breakaway goal past Lundqvist. 2-2 tie. Simmonds and Hartnell with helpers. Flyers outshooting Rangers 9-1 in the second period.
mjm44: Brown from Doughty although announcers think Loktionov may get credit i couldn't tell and now going to pp
Callahan with his second PPG of the game. 3-2 NYR. We're one goal away from the over, still half the game to go.
with his 11th goal (and 6th PPG) on the season. His career high is 23 goals in 08-09. Unreal. Preds Bs tied 1-1.
Jets jump to a quick 2-0 lead on goals by Wellwood and Burmistrov. I'm hoping to see MAF get lit up here for the sake of my FHS Beta League H2H week.
with his 41st assist, 19th PP assist, and 49th point of the year as he gets the first assist an Alfie's go-ahead goal. Spezza with the other helper. Sens up 1-0.
with his 29th of the year and the Penguins tie it up. Allow me to lament, again, trading Neal for Pavelec last year a couple of weeks before Neal went to the Pens.
From MSGN: Rangers' PP before today's game, 3 for 53. Rangers' PP today, 3 for 4. When it rains...
With his 21st of the year, Kris Versteeg
has the Panthers up 2-1 on NJD at the end of the second. Kovalchuk minus-1 with only one shot so far. Breakout third for Kovy?
Boston outshooting Nashville 29-13. Making ife easy for Thomas. 2-1 Bs. Rinne .939, Thomas .923. Sounds about right.
With his 17th, Hornqvist ties it up 2-2 in Boston. Ten minutes left. That was the Preds 15th shot. Tea Party Tim is daydreaming about Facebook. Nashville has hit the post twice in the third too.
Gaborik with a four point night (1+3) so far (thanks MoP) and the NYR/PHI game is officially an over. Rangers up 4-2 with 12 minutes left.
Penguins have pulled ahead on Kunitz' PPG. Malkin has two apples and three SOG so far.
Simmonds DESTROYING poor Boyle, and Simmonds now has a nice major to go along with 1+2=3, plus-2, and 3 SOG. He might be stealing the fantasy line of the day from Gaborik.
Oooor maybe that will be Callahan instead. Hat trick goal and the Rangers are putting this one away 5-2.
Rinaldo with the vicious slash and Dubinsky takes him on. More glorious PIM.
Malkin with three helpers now and the WIN/PIT game is officially an over. 4-2 Pens.
Rinaldo, Prust and Sestito with another round of misconducts. Sestito has 24 PIM today...lucky you if you had him dressed today.
Kind of lost track of the NSH/BOS game, but it's now 3-3 in OT. Lucic with the tying goal with just over a minute left in the third.
Bergeron seals it in the skills competition and the Bruins take it 4-3.
with the OT goal and the Isles beat the Kings 2-1. I am working on updating ze spreadsheet. In way over my head here haha.
My eyes may be deceiving me, but it looks like everyone nailed at least one point in the LAK/NYI game. No one picked visitor/over.
Ok, first four games have been updated on the spreadsheet, Please let me know if you spot any errors. A_Train has the early lead with a 7-1 record. FHS' own Michael Benedicks is right behind him at 6-2. Nice going guys! The rest of us are LOSERS.
Thanks mjm44 for keeping an eye on the PIT/OTT game, Buff and Park with goals ten second apart in the third and today's avalanche of goals continues. 6-4 Pens and we're way over.
Malkin's four points today give him a four point cushion in the Art Ross race as he's up to 30+36=66...in only 48 games.
Holy crap, Little scores and it's 7-5 Pittsburgh. Shoulda set this one at 11.5 I guess.
Horcoff scores 42 second into the third and we're on the verge of our fourth over in six games today. 3-2 Oilers. Paajarvi with the second assist and he's actually got points in consecutive games now. Whoa.
mjm44's prediction of six Malkin points is almost a reality, as Geno gets the helper on Letang's second of the game. 8-5 Penguins and what year are we in, 1985?
Erik Karlsson with the tying goal halfway through the third. Also his 50th point in only his 57th game. I compared him to Jesus Christ in an FHS post earlier this year. Now I'm thinking Jesus should be so lucky. Sens/Oil 3-3 in the third and we have ourselves another over.
There's my boy Taylor Hall
with the quick OT winner, and EDM takes it 4-3 in OT over Ottawa. Time to take a breather here, see you in a couple of hours.
Spreadsheet has been updated. A_Train, baxpens and Mr. Moose are all tied for the lead with four perfect games and a couple of halfers for identical 10-2 records. Nicely done so far guys!
Alright, break's over. Coming up in about 30 minutes we've got TBL@BUF and MTL@TOR.
comes into tonight's game on a five game point streak, with 4+4=8 in that span. In his last ten games he's 6+5=11 with 36 SOG and eight PIM for good measure.
Garon vs. Miller, Price vs. Reimer confirmed.
Mats Sundin's number is being retired in Toronto tonight. Lean back, relax, and travel back in time with me to Sundin's 1992-93 bottom line: 47+67=114, plus-21, 96 PIM, and 215 SOG. This was only his third season in the league. He went on to score at least 70 points in each of his next 13 seasons. Incredible.
Listen to that all-string version of With or Without You. Where's Ashley MacIsaac? When there are strings, and it's in Canada, Ashley MacIsaac is a must! Crazy bastard.
As Sundin waxes on, we're already five minutes in over in Buffalo. Scoreless. The Sabres played last night so TB's stars may be able to gang up here.
"for all the rich bald guys out there - get it over with, sundin". Well said mjm44. Well said.
Scoreless first in Buffalo. Yawn.
Price looks sharp on his first few shots tonight.
The gold is in the comments tonight folks:
Highlight bottom lines from earlier today:
Malkin 1+4=5, plus-2, 4 SOG
Gaborik 1+3=4, 4 PIM, 4 SOG
Kunitz 1+3=4, plus-2,
Calahan hat trick on 7 SOG, 2 PPG, GWG
Letang 2+1=3, plus-3, 2 PIM, 3 SOG
Byfuglien 1+1=2, minus-3 though
Simmonds 1+1=2, plus-2, 5 PIM, 3 SOG
COL@STL and CBJ@MIN about to get underway. All of us took the under in STL, so here's our chance to stand in solidarity as geniuses, or as idiots.
Tampa has jumped out to a 2-0 lead on goals by Downie and, you guessed it, Stamkos, who also assisted on Downie's tally.
Shots are 22-12 in favour of Buffalo though, so Miller is off to a shaky start.
has scored to tie it up 1-1vs. COL. This is Perron's fourth goal in three games so he's heating up nicely. He's also been producing PIM steadily with four minors in his last five games.
has scored to give the Habs a 1-0 lead. That's his 20th of the year, the fifth time he's hit the 20 mark in his career. He's a surprising plus-10 this year, and on pace for 28+31=60, plus-15, and 236 shots. Sweet.
Perron again! PPG again! Thanks MoP...
Am I the only one who has zero interest in watching the CBJ/MIN game?
with PPG in STL and we're tied up 2-2 at the end of the first. Could this one go over, against all odds?
has the Habs up 2-0 with his 16th of the year. He's having a forgettable season, by his standards. On pace for 25+8=33, minus-8 and "only" 192 SOG. Even his 82 PIM pace can't save him now. Guess it depends how deep your league is though.
Actually, in revisiting his career stats, he's not that far off his usual numbers, but the assists are lacking.
Pacioretty with his 23rd and he stays on fire with 6+3=9 and 32 shots in seven games. Lars Eller
scored three minutes later and the rout is on. 4-0 Montreal.
Vrbata has his 26th goal to put PHX up 1-0. His point streak is extended to seven games with 4+5=9 over those games. Smoking hot, for now.
Uh oh, the Yotes have put two past Emery and we're only six minutes into the first. Chicago's seven game losing streak is looking good for eight.
Garon ROBS Pominville to keep it at 2-1 Bolts. Pommer scored his 20th earlier, the sixth consecutive season he's pulled that off. From what I've seen he is generally underrated by a lot of fantasy GMs. Maybe not after this year though.
And that game finishes at 2-1, with Garon pulling off some last minute heroics. This is the first game to really backfire, as over half our submissions picked home/over.
We were split on the TOR/MTL game, with 8 unders and 12 overs. Price is doing his best to hold off the Leafs and preserve the under. 5-0 Habe with 2 minutes left.
Congrats to mjm44 for being the only player to pick visitor/under with the 5-0 MTL win.
Noted sniper Kyle Chipchura
has his second of the year vs. Emery and the Hawks. Chicago is in a real tailspin here.
Well, as I mentioned earlier, I've gotta step out for the evening, so that's it for me, for now. I'll log back in later tonight to update the spreadsheet and announce tonight's winner(s). Thanks again if you stopped by or commented today. Cheers!
Alright, back to wrap things up here. Chicago ended up losing 3-0 to Phoenix. Columbus got by Minny 3-1, St. Louis beat Colorado in OT and Calgary bested Vancouver in the skills competition. Check Michael Bs Daily Dosage tomorrow for all fantasy-worthy highlights.
As for the over/under and pick'em comp - ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner! Congrats to baxpens, who collected 17 of a possible 24 points, picking both the winner and the over/under correctly in an impressive 7 games. Look for baxpens to be featured in Monday's Fantasy Stars of the Week post.
Michael Benedicks, Mr. Moose and A_Train finished in the three-way tie for second at 15 points, Nice going guys.
If you have any suggestions to improve on this idea, let me know. Thanks again for tuning in. See you soon.