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Tuesday Daily Puck: Broadway Blues

Andrew Fiorentino

Andrew Fiorentino

A degenerate fantasy player since the age of 13.

Around the Rink

What is it about playing for the Rangers that turns frontline scorers into fantasy chumps? Martin St. Louis is the latest, having tallied all of two assists and no goals (despite 19 shots on goal) in seven games since joining the Blueshirts, but he's just the latest in a long line of guys who came to New York with reputations for putting pucks in nets, and then just… don't.

Rick Nash did produce 21 goals and 42 points in 44 games with the Rangers last year, but he somehow managed to do it quietly. This year, he's simply been quiet quietly – though he has reached 20 goals, he has just 32 points to show for the season. And Brad Richards – let's just not talk about Brad Richards. Of course, Rangers fans still haven't forgotten Marian Gaborik, who delivered two awesome 40-goal seasons, but was simply awful in the other two.

Meanwhile, Ryan Callahan has four points in six games with Tampa Bay.

If you want to go back further in time, you can wrap yourself in painful memories of Wade Redden (a consistent 30-plus-point D-Man who washed out of the NHL entirely within two years after joining the Rangers), Bobby Holik (at least one of his two Rangers seasons was pretty solid), Chris Drury (30 and 37 goals in the two seasons before he joined the Rangers; he then managed 25, 22, 14 and one before retiring)… I'm just going to stop now and talk about something else.

Though the Penguins have hit the skids a bit lately (4-4-2 in their last 10), it's pretty spectacular how they've managed to stay afloat near the top of the Eastern Conference standings even with all the injuries they've suffered. With no one seemingly consistently healthy enough to stay on the top lines alongside Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, plus injuries to their top two defensemen, you have to be impressed at the pure willpower of the Pens and the coaching of Dan Bylsma.

Let's get into Tuesday's action.

Projected Goalie Starters (all times Eastern)

For updates on the projected goalies later in the day, check our Projected Goalies Grid.

Bruins (Tuukka Rask) at Devils (Martin Brodeur), 7:00
Wild (Ilya Bryzgalov) at Islanders (Evgeni Nabokov), 7:00
Stars (Kari Lehtonen) at Penguins (Marc-Andre Fleury), 7:00
Hurricanes (Anton Khudobin) at Blue Jackets (Sergei Bobrovsky), 7:00
Avalanche (Jean-Sebastien Giguere) at Canadiens (Peter Budaj), 7:30
Rangers (Henrik Lundqvist) at Senators (Craig Anderson), 7:30
Maple Leafs (Jonathan Bernier) at Red Wings (Jimmy Howard), 7:30
Blackhawks (Corey Crawford) at Flyers (Steve Mason), 7:30
Sabres (Jhonas Enroth) at Flames (Joni Ortio), 9:00
Predators (Pekka Rinne) at Oilers (Ben Scrivens), 9:30
Capitals (Jaroslav Halak) at Ducks (Jonas Hiller), 10:00
Panthers (Roberto Luongo) at Sharks (Antti Niemi), 10:30

Injury News for Teams Playing Tuesday

Boston Bruins
Dennis Seidenberg, D (knee) – Out for the year
Johnny Boychuk, D (foot) – Didn't go Monday
Adam McQuaid, D (groin/hip) – Still shut down for a few days to a week more

New Jersey Devils
Ryan Carter, C (upper body) – Doubtful for Tuesday

Minnesota Wild
Josh Harding, G (illness) – Skated Tuesday, but return this year unlikely
Niklas Backstrom, G (abdominal soreness) – Skating as of last week, but doesn't seem close
Jason Zucker, LW (lower body) – Skating on his own

New York Islanders
Michael Grabner, RW (concussion) – Out indefinitely
John Tavares, C (knee) – Needs no surgery
Eric Boulton, LW (hand) – Broke his hand in a fight a couple weeks ago; no timetable offered

Dallas Stars
Rich Peverley, RW (chest) – Done for the year, but career will continue
Shawn Horcoff, C (upper body) – Not traveling with team

Pittsburgh Penguins
Chris Kunitz, LW (leg) – Has a reasonable chance to return Tuesday
Paul Martin, D (hand) – Practiced stick handling and shooting Monday
James Neal, RW (concussion) – Possible return this week, but probably not Tuesday
Kris Letang, D (stroke) – Practicing, but no timetable for return
Chris Conner, RW (wrist/foot) – Out 3-5 weeks after breaking foot
Tomas Vokoun, G (pelvis) – Skating with team, but no timetable
Pascal Dupuis, RW (knee) – Out for the year and maybe some of next year
Beau Bennett, RW (wrist) – Needs a few more practices before returning

Carolina Hurricanes
Radek Dvorak, RW (upper body) – Returned to practice Monday
Joni Pitkanen, D (heel) – No return timetable
John-Michael Liles, D (concussion) – Practiced without contact Monday
Jiri Tlusty, LW (lower body) – Won't go Tuesday

Columbus Blue Jackets
Jared Boll, RW (ankle) – Was "very close" about two weeks ago now
Ryan Murray, D (knee) – Out 3-5 more weeks after surgery

Colorado Avalanche
Alex Tanguay, LW (knee/hip) – Season-ending hip surgery
P.A. Parenteau, RW (knee) – Out for regular season, but could be back for playoffs
Paul Stastny, C (back) – Practiced fully Monday; possible for Tuesday

Montreal Canadiens
Josh Gorges, D (hand) – Had surgery; out three more weeks
Michael Bournival, C (concussion) – Sent to AHL, probably for rehab trip

Ottawa Senators
Craig Anderson, G (undisclosed) – Won't be ready before Thursday

Toronto Maple Leafs
Dave Bolland, C (ankle) – Week-to-week
Jonathan Bernier, G (groin) – Low-grade strain; possible for weekend return
Peter Holland, C (illness) – Sat out the last two games, but likely good to return Tuesday

Detroit Red Wings
Tomas Jurco, RW (rib) – Rib is fractured; likely out rest of March or longer
Alexey Marchenko, D (ankle) – Out for the year
Joakim Andersson, C (foot) – Out another couple weeks yet with broken foot
Darren Helm, C (concussion) – Had a setback; not likely to return anytime soon
Jonas Gustavsson, G (groin) – Practicing, but no word on whether he'll be ready for Tuesday
Justin Abdelkader, LW (lower body) – Questionable for Tuesday
Mikael Samuelsson, RW (shoulder) – Skating, but not practicing fully
Todd Bertuzzi, RW (lower body) – Didn't play Sunday, but seems possible for Tuesday
Dan Cleary, RW (knee) – Not skating; no timetable
Stephen Weiss, C (sports hernia) – Getting a second opinion; not close to returning
Pavel Datsyuk, C (knee) – Out the next three weeks
Henrik Zetterberg, LW (back) – Optimism for a return this season

Chicago Blackhawks
Nikolai Khabibulin, G (shoulder) – Still months away, so yeah… next year
Brandon Saad, LW (upper body) – Won't go Tuesday

Philadelphia Flyers
Ray Emery, G (groin) – Didn't play over weekend, but seems possible for Tuesday

Buffalo Sabres
Rostislav Klesla, D (suspension) – Suspended after failing to report to AHL
Chris Stewart, RW (ankle) – Not traveling on road trip
Michal Neuvirth, G (lower body) – Traveling on road trip
Jhonas Enroth, G (leg) – Not traveling on road trip
Patrick Kaleta, RW (knee) – Skating, but a ways off yet
Torrey Mitchell, C (foot – Hopes to be back in Tuesday
Tyler Myers, D (elbow) – Not traveling on road trip
Alexander Sulzer, D (upper body) – Not traveling on road trip
Zemgus Girgensons, C (lower body) – Um, also not traveling on road trip

Calgary Flames
Markus Granlund, C (shoulder) – Out indefinitely
David Jones, RW (upper body) – Out another week or two
Jiri Hudler, RW (upper body) – Skated before practice Monday
Karri Ramo, G (knee) – Targeting a return this week
Dennis Wideman, D (upper body) – Sat over weekend; could be out long-term

Edmonton Oilers
Jesse Joensuu, RW (ankle) – In a walking boot
Anton Belov, D (oblique) – Out at least another week with oblique tear

Washington Capitals
Mikhail Grabovski, C (ankle) – Skating on his own
Aaron Volpatti, LW (left shoulder) – Apparently still not cleared to practice
John Erskine, D (head) – Passed the concussion protocol; should be approaching a return
Brooks Laich, C (groin) – Successful procedure Monday; out 4-6 weeks

Anaheim Ducks
Stephane Robidas, D (leg) – Could return Tuesday
Cam Fowler, D (leg) – Having an MRI Tuesday

Florida Panthers
Sean Bergenheim, LW (lower body) – Has missed three straight; no word on Tuesday status
Tomas Kopecky, RW (concussion) – Out indefinitely
Jesse Winchester, LW (lower body) – No updates on return, but should be close-ish
Erik Gudbranson, D (knee) – Expected out another week
Alex Petrovic, D (upper body) – Placed on IR; out another week at least
Jonathan Huberdeau, LW (upper body) – Won't go Tuesday
Aleksander Barkov, C (knee) – Doesn't need surgery, but out indefinitely

San Jose Sharks
Tomas Hertl, C (knee) – Back to skating, but still a bit off
Brad Stuart, D (upper body) – Not close to returning
Raffi Torres, LW (general soreness) – Seems possible for Tuesday

Hot

Jarome Iginla, RW, BOS – Those who underrated Iginla based on his advanced age this year have been filled with regret, as he's been among the NHL's best in plus-minus while contributing plenty of offense. Currently, he's on a five-game point streak during which he has six goals (!) and an assist to go with a plus-7 rating, pushing him to a plus-30 on the year to go with 25 goals and 30 assists. Makes me wonder if I actually have to keep him at $16 in the RotoWire Staff Keeper Hockey League next year.

Keith Yandle, D, PHO – Yandle's been one of the game's hottest scorers on the blue line lately, involving himself in the Phoenix offense in nearly every game dating back to early February. He's got points in 10 of his last 13 contests, racking up a dozen assists and a pair of goals in that span, and he's not hurting you in plus-minus anymore, as he was earlier in the year. When a defenseman leads his team in scoring, it's pretty sad for the team, but Yandle's 49 points would look good on a second-line forward.

Antti Niemi, G, SJ – It looked like Alex Stalock was coming for Niemi's job, but the Finnish minder's changed the story with a five-game winning streak, including Sunday's 41-save shutout of the Rangers. And he draws Florida on Tuesday, which gives him a pretty strong shot at his sixth straight win and 35th of the year. Niemi's still underwhelmed overall this year, but even with somewhat subpar rate stats, he's been a terrific fantasy goalie thanks to how good the Sharks are as a team.

Cold

Cory Schneider, G, NJ – Martin Brodeur's started five of the Devils' last eight games and is slated to start again Tuesday, which should tell you pretty much all you need to know about how Schneider's been lately. But if you'd like some stats, well, Schneider's faced 51 shots in his last three outings and given up 15 goals. Yikes.

Andrew Cogliano, C, ANA – The offense has largely dried up for Cogliano since the start of February, as he has all of three points (all goals, so there's something) in his last 12 games, including just a single point and a minus-3 rating in his last six. As Cogs isn't good for much in the way of other stats, his owners need him to score, but his third-line spot with very minimal power-play time doesn't lend itself to streaks of big-time production.

Valeri Nichushkin, RW, DAL – Though Nichushkin snapped his seven-game pointless streak with an assist on Sunday, he remains without a goal for more than a month, with his last one coming way back on Feb. 8, and actually hasn't put a shot on goal in the last two games. In fact, he hasn't taken more than two shots in a game since March 1. However, he's back on the top line with Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn now, so he should gain some points via osmosis there.

Recommended Pickup
Jordan Staal, C, CAR – There are still a lot of leagues where Staal's available, and after his early-season struggles, that’s no surprise. But when you see a brand-name player like Staal back to producing big numbers – he's ripped off three goals and six assists while going plus-7 in his last six games – you'd best pay attention. Staal's still-unimpressive season numbers (36 points in 68 games) may not inspire you, and his team context is still iffy, but he's been producing even while the team fails to score – or win – much at all.

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