Around the Rink
Wednesday is the final day of NHL action this week before the league takes a break for its All-Star festivities. There are those who disparage the NHL All-Star Game, and all-star games in general. They complain about the lack of hitting and all the goals and the general lack of resemblance to the traditional NHL game as a whole. Sure, this is true, but that’s also the point.
The All-Star Game is not supposed to be just another hockey game but with better players. It’s supposed to be a chance to see skills on display we generally don’t get to see. It is about fancy passes and stickhandling movies and the occasional bit of tomfoolery. The game is supposed to be fun, not a game that drains players and risks undue injury due to a hit to the head or what have you.
If you don’t like that conceptually, that’s fine. This isn’t for you. Take a few days off from watching hockey, and let those of us who are interested enjoy some breakaway goals and a general defensive apathy. It’s only for one night, after all.
Projected Goalie Starters (all times Eastern)
Maple Leafs (Jonathan Bernier) at Senators (Robin Lehner) 7:00
Blackhawks (Corey Crawford) at Penguins (Marc-Andre Fleury*) 8:00
Blue Jackets (Sergei Bobrovsky) at Jets (Michael Hutchinson) 9:00
Bruins at Avalanche (Semyon Varlamov) 10:00
Flames (Joni Ortio*) at Ducks (Frederik Andersen) 10:00
Kings (Jonathan Quick) at Sharks (Antti Niemi) 10:30
For updates on the projected goalies later in the day, check out our Projected Goalies Grid.
Injury News For Teams Playing Wednesday
Peter Holland, C (upper-body) – Expected back after All-Star break.
Leo Komarov, LW (shoulder) – Won’t play Wednesday.
Joffrey Lupul, LW (lower-body) – Expected back after All-Star break.
Stephane Robidas, D (upper-body) – Won’t play Wednesday.
Mark Borowiecki, D (leg) – Out indefinitely.
Zack Smith, C (wrist) – Out at least another month.
Daniel Carcillo, LW (suspension) – Suspended for six games.
Trevor van Riemsdyk, D (knee) – Expected back between mid-February and mid-March.
Kris Versteeg, RW (hand) – Out for at least another couple weeks.
Blake Comeau, LW (wrist) – Getting x-rays on wrist.
Simon Despres, D (illness) – Did not play Tuesday.
Pascal Dupuis, RW (blood clot) – Out long term.
Patric Hornqvist, RW (lower-body) – Out indefinitely.
Kris Letang, D (undisclosed ) – Left Tuesday’s game with injury.
Olli Maatta, D (shoulder) – Out for season.
Artem Anisimov, C (triceps) – Returning soon, but date unknown.
Brian Gibbons, C (knee) – Expected back soon, but date unknown.
Boone Jenner, LW (back) – On injured reserve.
Ryan Murray, D (knee) – Out indefinitely.
Grant Clitsome, D (upper-body) – On injured reserve.
Mathieu Perreault, C (upper-body) – Out through All-Star break.
Mark Stuart, D (undisclosed) – Questionable for Wednesday.
Jacob Trouba, D (upper-body) – Questionable for Wednesday.
Simon Gagne, LW (personal) – Out for season.
Brad Marchand, LW (suspension) – Out Wednesday.
Patrick Bordeleau, LW (knee) – On injured reserve.
Jamie McGinn, LW (back) – Expected to be out for season.
Borna Rendulic, RW (leg) – On injured reserve.
Ryan Wilson, D (shoulder) – Out for season.
Jesse Winchester, LW (concussion) – Return date unknown.
Curtis Glencross, LW (lower-body) – On injured reserve.
Josh Jooris, C (wrist) – Off injured reserve, but didn’t play Monday.
Ladislav Smid, D (upper-body) – On injured reserve.
Eric Brewer, D (foot) – On injured reserve.
Martin Jones, G (back) – On injured reserve.
Tanner Pearson, LW (leg) – Out for season.
Tyler Toffoli, RW (illness) – On injured reserve.
Slava Voynov, D (suspension) – Suspended indefinitely.
Justin Braun, D (upper-body) – On injured reserve.
Mike Brown, RW (leg) – Out until late January at least.
Raffi Torres, LW (knee) – Out indefinitely.
Tommy Wingels, RW (upper-body) – On injured reserve.
Zach Parise, LW, MIN – Parise scored two goals against the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday, giving him not just a four game point streak, but a four game goal scoring streak. He also threw in one assist for good measure. This gives him 19 goals on the season in 39 games, and he has at least four shots on goal in his last six games. The Wild have had issues, but they have been in net, meaning there is nothing Parise can do about that. All he can do is keep scoring, and he’s been up to it recently.
Gustav Nyquist, C, DET – Goose started to make people take notice in the second half of last season, and he got off to a good start to this season as well. He cooled down a smidge, but in his last three games he has had one goal and one assist. He hasn’t been taking a lot of shots, which is concerning in terms of keeping this pace up, but he showed us last year what he’s capable of when he’s firing on all cylinders. When the Goose is loose, take advantage while you can.
Steve Downie, RW, PIT – Downie is presumably owned in fantasy leagues because he is capable of throwing in a spot of scoring with a plethora of penalty minutes. While the latter has been in full effect recently, his scoring has left owners desiring something more. He is sans a point in his last six games, and he is also a minus-5 in those contests. There are players who can give you penalty minutes and scoring, and Downie is only helping you in one of those right now.
Brooks Orpik, D, WAS – It seems odd that Orpik is owned in any fantasy leagues at this point, considering that he only has nine points this season, all assists. None of those points have come in those last eight games, and he’s not even helping your plus/minus if you own him. Anybody who is still holding onto him need to take this chance to let him go.
Mike Fisher, C, NAS – Fisher missed time with injury, he’s only played in 23 games so far, but he’s been making up for lost time recently. He has eight points in his last 10 games, giving him 18 points on the season. He’s also a plus-5 over his last seven games, so he is helping there as well. Now that he’s healthy, Fisher is worth sticking on your roster.