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The Daily Puck: Filppula Finds His Wings

George Kurtz

George Kurtz

George Kurtz writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.

The Daily Puck
George Kurtz, RotoWire Writer

Projected Goalie Starters

Islanders (Dwayne Roloson) at Rangers (Henrik Lundqvist), 7:00 PM
Colorado (Craig Anderson) at Carolina (Cam Ward), 7:00 PM
Columbus (Steve Mason) at Buffalo (Ryan Miller), 7:30 PM
Calgary (Miikka Kiprusoff) at Minnesota (Niklas Backstrom), 8:00 PM
Vancouver (Roberto Luongo) at Chicago (Marty Turco), 8:30 PM
Detroit (Jimmy Howard) at Anaheim (Jonas Hiller), 10:00 PM

Injuries for Teams Playing Friday

Day-to-Day (Includes DL players close to returning)
Tim Connolly (C) Buffalo – (Groin) Has started skating on his own, doubtful to play Friday.
Drew Stafford (W) Buffalo -- (Shoulder) Expected to play Friday versus Columbus.
Rob Niedermayer (C) Buffalo -- (Knee) Had pain while skating on his own, won’t play this weekend.

Long Term or IR
Peter Mueller (C) Colorado – (Concussion) Still not skating, no set date for his return.
Craig Anderson (G) Colorado – (Groin) Scheduled to start Friday versus Carolina.
Chris Stewart (W) Colorado - (Hand) Surgery will keep Stewart out 4-6 weeks.
Marian Hossa (W) Chicago - (Lower body) Out 2-3 weeks.
Kyle Okposo (W) Islanders – (Shoulder) Surgery will keep Okposo out until at least mid-December.
Mark Streit (D) Islanders – (Shoulder) Surgery will keep Streit out until at least February.
Daymond Langkow (W) Calgary - (Neck) Has experienced numbness below the waist, career could possibly be over.
Ales Kotalik (W) Calgary - (Knee) Could be back at anytime.
Mike Modano (C) Detroit – (Wrist) Best-case scenario is a February return.
Guillaume Latendresse (W) Minnesota - (Labrum, hernia) Could be out for the remainder of the season.
Josh Harding (G) Minnesota – (Knee) Out until at least early next year.
Kristian Huselius (W) Columbus – (Ankle) Out at least two more weeks.
Chris Drury (C) Rangers - (Finger) Finger is still not healed, out another week to 10 days.
Vaclav Prospal (W) Rangers - (Knee) Not expected to return until mid to late December.
Sammi Salo (D) Vancouver – (Achilles) Not expected back until mid-January.

Transactions

Jason Bacashihua (G) Colorado – Re-assigned to the AHL.
Craig Anderson (G) Colorado – Activated off of IR.
Brayden Schenn (C) Los Angeles – Re-assigned to the AHL.
Andrei Markov (D) Montreal – Placed on IR.
David Hale (D) Ottawa – Placed on waivers.
Alexandre Bolduc (C) Vancouver – Sent to the AHL on a conditioning assignment.
Jeremy Colliton (W) Islanders – Cleared waivers.
Nikita Nikitin (D) St. Louis – Re-assigned to the AHL.
David Hale (D) Ottawa – Placed on waivers.


Hot

Sam Gagner (C) Edmonton – Gagner is one of the reasons the Oilers have won three in a row and four of their last five. He is never going to confused with one of the best centers in the game, but with three goals and six points in his last four games, he might be worth a gamble if you’re in need.

Kris Letang (D) Pittsburgh – The big debate before the season in fantasy leagues was who would take over as the lead offensive defenseman for the Penguins with the departure of Sergei Gonchar in free agency. Would it be Alex Goligoski or Kris Letang? Well with five goals and 19 assists in 27 games, Letang has not only taken over that role but is being mentioned as a possible Norris Trophy candidate.

Cold

Daniel Alfredsson (W) Ottawa – Alfredsson has now gone scoreless in his last five games, and has only scored two goals in his last 16 games. He is still on pace to score in the mid 20s, but most of that production came early on this season. It’s fair to start to worry that his game may continue to falter.

Niklas Backstrom (G) Minnesota – Backstrom started off the season hot, but now hasn’t won a game since Nov. 17, and to make matters worse, backup Jose Theodore is starting to steal some starts from him. Backstrom is already at a disadvantage with the offensively challenged Wild; he can’t afford not to be at the top of his game.

Recommended Pickup

Valtteri Filppula (C) Detroit – The Red Wings were expecting big things out of Filppula coming into the season but a slow start tempered those expectations a bit. Filppula may finally be getting comfortable as he has two goals and four points in his last three games and his offensive jump start couldn’t come at a better time for Detroit as they have lost Mike Modano for the next couple of months due to injury.