Kukla's Korner

The Goods on Fantasy Hockey

Pick Six: Saturday December 3

A total of 12 games are on the schedule for Saturday, meaning that all but six teams (Detroit, Colorado, Minnesota, Anaheim, Columbus, and Vancouver – all from the Western Conference) are in action. All of those teams except for the Blue Jackets play on Sunday, while Calgary is the only team that plays both Saturday and Sunday. So it should go without saying that you should load up on Flames and avoid Blue Jackets if you need to make up ground in offense this week in head-to-head leagues. Aside from the Flames and Blue Jackets, here are my weekend recommendations.

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Pick Six: Thursday December 1

Thursday is somewhat busy night with eight games on the schedule. Perhaps there will be a few start/sit decisions in fantasy lineups, but I’ll use the opportunity to identify some unlikely names that could possess some immediate value and some usual names that are mired in slumps. And no, Bobby Ryan hasn’t been traded yet.

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Pick Six: November 29-30

Can coaching changes impact fantasy leagues? Sure! For starters, all players on the team begin with a clean slate as they attempt to make a solid first impression with the new bench boss. As well, a new coach provides a fresh set of eyes to look at some of the problems that the old coach couldn’t handle, meaning possible improved results for struggling players.

With that in mind, it was a bad day for coaches of struggling Southeast Division teams, as Bruce Boudreau and Paul Maurice were both handed their walking papers on Monday. Dale Hunter and Kirk Muller will both make their NHL head coaching debuts on Tuesday, which should make the St. Louis/Washington and Florida/Carolina matchups two to watch. This version of the Pick Six includes players who could be positively impacted by Monday’s coaching changes.

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  Tags: alex+ovechkin, alexander+semin, bobby+ryan, cam+ward, cory+schneider, fantasy+hockey, ian+gooding, jonas+hiller, magnus+paajarvi, pick+six, the+goods

Pick Six: Saturday November 26

Just like many NHL teams, the Pick Six is playing back-to-backs on Friday and Saturday. Following a busy Black Friday, which you hopefully spent more time watching hockey than shopping, Saturday also provides plenty of action with 11 games on the schedule, meaning still more roster choices in daily leagues. Don’t forget that there are more afternoon starts on Saturday, all of which happen to be old Patrick Division clubs (Islanders at Devils, 1 p.m. ET; Flyers at Rangers, 2 p.m. ET).

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Pick Six: Friday November 25

With the exception of Colorado, Los Angeles, Nashville, and San Jose, all NHL teams are in action on Black Friday. You’ll need to set your fantasy lineups before you head out shopping, since the first game starts at 1 p.m. ET (Detroit vs. Boston).

Speaking of shopping, I have to admit that I don’t really like it, which may seem strange for someone who is a marketing major. However, anyone who knows me will say that I would rather study something than participate in it. I guess that’s why I play a lot more fantasy hockey than the real game. But since I don’t like shopping, I’m going to make the theme of this Pick Six players that you should not be purchasing in your fantasy league anytime soon.

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Pick Six: Wednesday November 23

As we near American Thanksgiving, we hockey fans have a lot to be thankful for. In particular, we need to be grateful for the return of one Sidney Crosby, the NHL’s marquee player. (Hopefully you’re not an Islanders fan – all of North America just got to see how lousy your team is.) So it should be no surprise that the most intriguing of Wednesday’s 13 games will be the St. Louis/Pittsburgh matchup, a game that many hockey fans will be checking to see how many points Crosby scored.

With all but four teams (Edmonton, Ottawa, Tampa Bay, Toronto) in action on Wednesday, hockey fans will have a large spread of games to choose from.  The same cannot be said for Thursday, a day in which the NHL will not play any games in an attempt to not compete with the NFL, which has cornered the market on Thanksgiving sports action.

And remember, I’m Canadian, so no turkey for me on Thursday. It’s a normal work day for me.

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Pick Six: Saturday November 19

A total of 24 teams are in action on Saturday. Rather than listing them all, I’ll just say that all teams except Anaheim, Calgary, Carolina, Colorado, Ottawa, and Vancouver are in action on Saturday. Say, I wonder why the Ducks seldom play on a Saturday but always seem to play on Sunday – can anyone answer that? There could be an inherent advantage to owning Ducks players in leagues that have high bench/start ratios. That’s something to think about as I ramble on about the Pick Six for Saturday.

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Pick Six: November 15-16

For the next Pick Six, I’m doing what the NHL Board of Governors do in changing the rules a little (will hits on goalies outside the crease be the next item on the agenda?) I realize that fantasy owners need to make roster decisions on both busy and non-busy nights; plus, some of the players I’d like to mention happen to play on the non-busy nights. So I’ve listed the player, recommendation, and day of next game for this version of the Pick Six. Hopefully my roster recommendations help you regardless.

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Pick Six: Saturday November 12

We have another busy Saturday coming up, with 22 of 30 teams in action. Included in this day’s Pick Six are some intriguing names that have made news one way or another recently.

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  Tags: craig+smith, fantasy+hockey, ian+gooding, james+wisniewski, jhonas+enroth, kris+russell, pick+six, rick+nash, sidney+crosby, the+goods

Pick Six: Thursday November 10

Thursday is a lukewarm busy day, with nine games on the schedule. However, some intriguing matchups are on the menu, including a meeting of the top two draft picks last season, and several well-known players who will be facing their former teams for the first time since being traded during the summer.

Much more importantly, Happy Remembrance Day on Friday to my Canadian readers, and Happy Veterans Day to those in the United States of America. On Friday, as well as every time you hear the national anthem before a game, take a moment to think about those who sacrificed their lives so that you could enjoy a life of freedom… and hockey.

Speaking of the palindrome date of 11-11-11, will we also remember the day for the return of one Sidney Crosby? We’ll have to wait and see.

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About The Goods on Fantasy Hockey

My name is Ian Gooding, and this is The Goods on Fantasy Hockey. Given my ability to understand numbers, write sentences, and follow hockey, it’s not a surprise to those who know me that I became a fantasy hockey writer. I started writing about fantasy hockey in 2006 for fantasyhockey.com and became the site’s content editor in 2007. Looking to expand my audience, I joined Kukla’s Korner in the summer of 2011 to create the site’s first fantasy hockey blog.

A few times each week, I’ll provide an article called “Pick Six” where I will write about six players that should either be in your fantasy team’s starting lineup or bench for the upcoming game. As well, I’ll provide the fantasy takes on important hockey developments. You can also email me your questions or comments to gooding74@shaw.ca, or follow me on Twitter.


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