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Daily Dosage - Jan. 14, 2009

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Daily Diarrhea   

Zajac Travis Zajac is quietly having a very nice breakout season, with 10 points in his last 10 games, he's now on pace for 60+ points centering the Devils 1st line between Zach Parise and Jamie Langenbrunner.  He's also giving you a nice +/- and a decent number of shots.

Brian Rolston has had a down year but things have picked up a little bit lately as he's got 7 goals in his last 15 games and while he is mostly playing reduced minutes on the 3rd line, he does get himself onto the 1st PP unit most nights.

Hat-trick last night for Erik Cole and it just shows you how hot guys (7+4=11 in last 9) get all the luck as there was debate as to whether Cole even touched one of the goals and the last one was an empty netter... oh well, they all count in fantasy hockey.

Just so you know what you're up against with Nikita Filatov (well more with Ken Hitchcock), following his hat-trick last game, Filatov only played 7:42 last night with no shots on goal.

ElliotThe era of Brian Elliott may not have begun officially yet (since Gerber is still around)...but un-officially, it's here.  He stopped 23 of 24 shots for the win last night.  Senators.  Winning.  Sounds weird to say it out loud.  Not only was Elliott great but the Senators played very well in front of their young netminder...five goals on 40 shots.  Expect B.E. to be the man in Ottawa for the short term, at least.

Andrew Raycroft got the start last night and stopped 23 of 27 shots for the loss.  It's his fourth straight start as the Avs are riding the hot hand.  If he can keep his great season going (9-1, 2.11 GAA and .928 SV% before the game) he'll stick as the Avs #1 and become fantasy relevant once again.

Speaking of hot...how about that Andrei Kostitsyn? With his goal last night he's now on a nice five game stretch where he's scored five times and added four assists.  In addition to his goal he picked up a five minute boarding penalty.  It cost his team the win but it probably helped your fantasy squad.

CookeWe had to throw the Cooke jersey up there...since it might be the only chance we get.  Matt Cooke played with Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin last night and had a goal in 15 minutes of ice time.  The revolving door keeps spinning.  Cookie is a grinder and isn't expected to score much.  Still, with him hanging out in front of the net he's bound to bang in a few, right?  Assuming he can stick on the top line (which is a big assumption) he might be worth an add in some very deep leagues.

Steve Sullivan picked up his first point since he completed his impressive comeback (a PP assist).  A nice story but that's not going to help you win your fantasy pool.  Let some other GM deal with him, he's too risky and doesn't have much upside anyway.

Pekka Rinne picked up another shutout.  His fourth in only 16 starts.  He's been a bit inconsistent at times but he's looking like he'll be a good one when he finally takes hold of the number one job.

RolossonDwayne Roloson put up another good start....stopping 34 of 36 and picking up the 'W'.  Like Rinne, he's been inconsistent at times but looks locked-in right now.  Hopefully you have him in your lineup and are taking advantage of his hot streak.

Tim Thomas and Henrik Lundqvist also had great games in the blue paint last night.

Injury Updates (see our Injury Updates page for a consolidated list of injuries):

Rick Nash did some skating yesterday morning and is expected to practice today.  He should be out another week so hang in there Nash owners...hopefully you too have a goalie like Steve Mason on your team to get you through his injury.

Snow In a move that shows the NYI are serious about John Tavares, Joey MacDonald went down with a groin injury last night on the same day that there are rumblings that Rick DiPietro may launch an operation shutdown for the rest of the year.  Rumour has it that Garth Snow is considering bringing the shoulder guards out of storage and might be in net next game. [more

Steve Eminger missed Monday's and Tuesday's games with a UBI, he's listed as day-to-day.

Keith Tkachuk left last night's game after taking a bonk to the head, not sure how serious it is.

Nikolai Kulemin is out day-to-day after taking a shot off the ankle in practice.

Returning to action from injury last night was: Niklas Backstrom, Alex Steen, MA Bergeron, Taylor Pyatt and Frans Nielsen.

Distraction of the Day      

What's distracting us today?  We're feeling a bit nasty today so when we saw this video it got us unusually angry:

This guy is obviously an idiot but we just wanted to make a few points so we can get this nasty-ness out of our system:

  • First off, this whole 80-20 thing...isn't this just common sense?  A goalie stands in the middle of the net last we looked.  Of course a very small percentage of goals are scored in the center of the net.  A goalie can't defend all four corners leaving them exposed (the magical 20%?).  So we guess Dan Brindell (known as 'Guy in Suit' from now on) is proposing players only shoot at the corners!  Oh my god, what a revelation!
  • We were still curious enough to go all CSI on this guy's ass so we went to discover what team he was talking about.  He gave use a few clues:
    • Clue #1 - The team he gave his 'algorithm' to were local.  His area code is 716 (that's Buffalo, who didn't make the playoffs last year)  
    • Clue #2 - The team took 8 shots in the final game of a Stanley Cup series and scored 6 goals 
    • Clue #3 - During the season they scored 2 goals in 4 games (we'll assume it's against the same team)  
  • Clue #1 - Philadelphia is 277 and Pittsburgh 179 miles from Buffalo...not really local but we'll give 'Guy in Suit' the benefit of the doubt
  • Clue #2 - Only two teams scored six goals in the final game of a Stanley Cup series:
    • Philadelphia beat Montreal 6-4 in the first round...winning the series 4-1
      • They took 37 shots...not eight
    • Pittsburgh beat Philadelphia 6-0 in East finals...winning the series 4- 1
      •  They took 25 shots...not eight
  • Clue #3 - Pittsburgh played Philly 8 times and scored 23 goals, Philly played Montreal 4 times and scored 7 goals
  • So from all that it looks like we're talking about the Flyers,,,maybe:
    • Kinda local to Buffalo
    • They did score 6 goals in the final game of a playoff series but had 37 shots in the game not eight
    • Played four games in the regular season against the Habs but scored 7 goals not two
  • So the Philadelphia Flyers hired him (during the Stanley Cup Playoffs no less) because of this brilliant idea?  We can just picture him walking into the Flyers' head office:
    • Guy in Suit: "Mr. Clarke, I've got a proposal for you"
    • Bobby Clarke: "Even though my team is in the middle of the Stanley Cup Playoffs I've got no problem setting aside some of my free time for a guy with no experience or credentials...so what do you have in mind?"
    • Guy in Suit: "Well I've discovered a percentage related algorithm where 80% of the goals in the NHL are scored in 20% of the net space"
    • Bobby Clarke: "Wow, I could see how that might come in handy...so what's the 20% area?"
    • Guy in Suit: "No idea, I was thinking you could pay me to give you the idea and then you could do the leg work"
    • Bobby Clarke: "But you've already told me the idea"
    • Guy in Suit:"Oooooh yeah....ummmm...,,.but there are other applications"
    • Bobby Clarke: "Like what?"
    • Guy in Suit:"Well 20% of the faceoffs go to 80% of the players"
    • Bobby Clarke: "That doesn't make any sense"
    • Guy in Suit: "How about 80% of the fans buy 20% of the hot dogs?"
    • Bobby Clarke: "Get out of my office"
    • Guy in Suit: "But it's a PERCENTAGE RELATED ALGORITHM" 
    • Bobby Clarke: [Throws haymaker after haymaker]
  • If the goalies were static and if the goalies couldn't learn from mistakes this 'algorithm' might have some merit.  But how long do you think it's going to take Roberto Luongo (and his coaches) to realize your shooting glove high every time?  Don't you think he would compensate for it? Maybe this is why the Flyers got pumped by the Penguins in the East Finals?
  • If this guy gets an NHL job we're going on a shooting spree...so angry.