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Fantasy Outlook – NHL Playoffs Round 2

2015 NHL Playoffs

The 2nd round of the NHL playoffs came to an end with an always exciting Game 7 decided by overtime, in which the New York Rangers topped the Washington Capitals 2-1 to move on to the Eastern Conference finals. Let’s take a look back at the match ups to see who is performing for your playoff pool and who turned out to be a bust…

Eastern Conference

Tampa Bay Lightning vs Montreal Canadiens

High Scorer:

Tyler Johnson (12 points)

Bust:

For Tampa Bay, their skilled players came to play in round 2. Everyone in the top 6 forwards is producing points, almost every night. If you reached for Jonathan Drouin expecting him to be a big part of the playoff run, it’s not happening. Even with an injury to Ryan Callahan, he won’t be cracking the lineup. He’s a minus 4 in only 3 games this postseason. Montreal will head into the off season with a pretty clear idea of what they have. PK Subban led the way in the playoffs with 8 points (7 assists) and Carey Price was excellent.

Moving On: Tampa Bay

The triplets line of Tyler Johnson, Nikita Kucherov and Ondrej Palat has been on fire with a combined 30 points so far in the first two playoff rounds. They were able to score against a (soon to be) Vezina winning goalie – Carey Price. Can they keep it up against the Rangers’ Henrik Lundqvist in the Eastern Conference finals? We will see.

 

Washington Capitals vs New York Rangers

High Scorer:

Alex Ovechkin/Joel Ward (9 points)

Bust:

Mike Green may not be responsible for the Capitals being eliminated, but he was certainly a big part of it. He is set to be an unrestricted free agent this off season and it’ll be a tough sell to get the Capitals to keep him after taking penalties, committing turnovers and being ineffective offensively throughout the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Moving On: Rangers

The series winning overtime goal landed on the stick of Derek Stepan after a bounce off the boards. He is now tied for the lead in points in NY with Derick Brassard (8 points each). The top defenseman is still the captain, Ryan McDonagh although he took some huge hits to the body this series so he will be thankful for the couple days off. Using only the eye test, besides Alex Ovechkin, Rick Nash looked like the best player on the ice. He is the current leader in SOG among remaining playoff teams with 45 total, yet only has 2 goals to show for his efforts. I expect this to change next round, and for Nash to heat up.

 

Western Conference

Minnesota Wild vs Chicago Blackhawks

High Scorer:

Patrick Kane (13 points)

Bust:

Lots of choices for fantasy busts off the Minnesota Wild. They seemingly outplayed the Blackhawks for most of the series but could not overcome the star power of Pat Kane, Jonathan Toews and Duncan Keith. Tomas Vanek was a stand out bust with 0 goals and a -7.

Moving On: Blackhawks

Pat Kane is one of the best skilled players in the game, if not the best, and he’s showing it this postseason. He is leading the way for the Blackhawks after returning from injury with 13 points (7 goals, 8 assists). Look out for Marian Hossa in the Western Conference finals. He will have his chances with the focus likely to be on Kane and Toews. And he leads all Blackhawks in shots on goal with 34, and only 1 goal (2.9% shooting percentage), which is not sustainable for a scorer of his caliber.

 

Anaheim Ducks vs Calgary Flames

High Scorer:

Corey Perry (15 points)

Bust:

It’s hard to call any of the Calgary Flames players a bust because expectations were not that high for the young group and they were clearly out matched by the powerhouse Ducks.

Moving On: Ducks

Corey Perry – 15 points. Ryan Getzlaf – 12 points. Jakob Silfverberg – 11 points. Ryan Kesler – 9 points. All in only 9 games. This Western Conference final against the Blackhawks is a matchup of power forwards against skilled forwards, great defensive play and solid goaltending. This should be a fun series.

 

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