As the regular season heads down the final stretch, this week will be critical as teams assess whether their team is in a position to contend for a potential cup. The trade deadline is now a week away, and with numerous games holding playoff implications this week, this week could essentially be the ‘deciding factor’ if they want to make a move at the deadline for many teams. Obviously the teams that are already said to be ‘selling’ don’t play much into this decisive week of the regular season (Senators, Rangers, Sabres, Canadiens), but teams on the cusp of being a legit title contender, as well as teams still hunting for a wild card spot will be paying very close attention. Unlike the NFL trade deadline, the NHL trade deadline is usually very eventful in one way or another, so this week will be critical in determining who makes a push for certain missing pieces.
Fantasy Team of The Week
Washington Capitals: Washington has an ideal week for fantasy owners to take note of (not to mention their week bolds well as they compete for the Metropolitan division lead with Pittsburgh). The Caps drop the puck on Monday as they visit Buffalo (need we say more), they do follow up as they conclude a back to back as they host Tampa Bay, this is a tough one, and the one day owners should be weary of utilizing any Caps in potential lineups. However, it’s smooth sailing from there… Thursday they head to the Sunshine state to play an underwhelming Florida Panthers team, and they finish off the week on Saturday by hosting… Buffalo… Again. When you get the Sabres twice in the span of a week, you win; rest of the schedule irregardless. To sum it all up, the Capitals have 4 games this week, 3 of them against bottom half teams in the Eastern Conference, while half of them being against one of the worst teams in the league. The Capitals win ‘fantasy team of the week’ despite a tough Tuesday tilt against Tampa.
Fantasy Goaltender of the Week
Alex Lyon (Philadelphia Flyers): Lyon is a 25 year old, Ivy league guy that looks to guard the crease for Philadelphia as the goaltending injuries keep piling up. Brian Elliot, and more recently, Michael Neuvrith have both gone down, leaving the goaltending duties to Lyon. Lyon has a nice week to ease into things, as Philadelphia has been red hot, and their week is compiled of scoring-challenged opponents such as Ottawa, and Montreal. As long as Lyon plays somewhat consistent, one would think he could easily string together a few wins while taking on the role as Philadelphia’s netminder.