As we head into the weekend, of which I assume we are all looking forward to the NFL Super Bowl, do not let the weekend go by without focusing on the NHL guys between the pipes.
Similar to the NFL, where the quarterbacks are the machines that run the systems, in the NHL the goalie can be the guy who takes his team to the next level. So lets focus on who has started the season hot and who is cold.
Philipp Grubauer of the Colorado Avalanche is the cream of the crop. Sporting a 7 and 2 record and .934 save percentage, he is no doubt the best of the best so far. When looking at the cost for daily he will be at the top of the price scale, but well worth it. His Goals-Against is 1.67 while facing an average of 25 shots per game, having posted two shutouts so far.
Andrei Vasilevskiy of the Tampa Bay Lighting is not to far off Grubauer when it comes to top of the league. Posting a .927 save percentage while facing an average of 27 shots a night, his stats for fantasy are excellent. With a 6 and 1 record he is a must buy, despite not having any shutout points yet.
Darcy Kuemper of the Arizona Coyotes has started the year surrounded by high hopes, which have yet to reach flight. He has posted a 2 and 5 record with Goals-Against of 2.65. His production is down, but he is a young goalie with a lot of upside potential and is someone to watch as the season moves on. Getting ahead of the streak that a lot of goalies count on could prove to be beneficial. This goalie could be someone to round out your team at a lower cost and could pay off if put in the right place. So, he is a potential special buy based on daily costs.
Thomas Greiss of the Detroit Red Wings is a player to stay away from. There isn't much to say except that there is no upside so even getting him at a low cost is not worth it. Posting a 0 and 6 record on a very bad team sets you up for disaster, and with Goals-Against of 3.46 goals and a Save Percentage of 3.46 means he cannot stop a beach ball if shot at him.
Thatcher Demko of the Vancouver Canucks is another goalie to stay away from. Vancouver is giving up too many shots, the defense is allowing too many defensive zone giveaways and the team is taking too many penalties, all of which lead to giving up many goals. Posting a 3 and 5 record to go along with a 3.81 Save Percentage means the red light is on more then it is off. Stay away.
My recommendations for adding goalies to your daily league are:
- Try to avoid the North division goalies as much as possible as the scoring in the north is similar to what it was in the 80's so getting a win is great but giving up 3 to 5 goals hurts your overall point totals. Prime example Carey Price of the Montreal Canadians is posting a 4 and 1 record but also gives up 2.81 goals per game which in turn equals a save percentage of .899 which is far below where it needs to be.
- Avoid goalies playing against Colorado and Tampa Bay, as these two power house teams can put up six goals per night.
- Look for a goalie playing against a team that is going back-to-back or a team that is playing against a team with a low shot output and low powerplay percentage.
Enjoy the games and turn off that red light when it comes to selecting your goalie.