This was a fairly nondescript fantasy week, so we'll get down to business. One quick thing, though. One of the first things I look at when evaluating a player's value is whether he shoots the puck enough. It's obvious - if you shoot, you increase your chance of scoring. Even if it doesn't go in, it shows you're involved offensively. Like Wayne Gretzky once said: "You miss 100 percent of the shots you blah blah blah." Well, I found an exception. Nazem Kadri has 74 shots on goal, which is third in the entire league (Ovechkin - 82, Taylor Hall - 76). Of those 74 shots, a single one has gotten past a goalie. That's a shooting percentage of 1.35. Impressive. Wait, "impressive" suggests that I like it. Whatever the word is for being negatively impressed, that's what it is.
Anyway, here are the two and four game teams for the week:
Two Game Teams: Calgary, Edmonton, New York Rangers
Four Game Teams: Anaheim, Columbus, Detroit, Montreal, San Jose, St. Louis, Vancouver
Interesting notes: Dan Girardi had a goal, 3 assists, was +6, and had 15 blocks. This was probably his one chance to earn a Star of the Week... but he didn't. And he's a Ranger, so I don't care. Ryan McDonagh was another Ranger who was close. He had an assist, was +7, and netted 3 goals on 12 shots. He had just 8 goals in 71 games last year. Alex Ovechkin had 20 shots this week, including 15 in one game. Even more impressive is that he netted zero points for the week.
* Matt Duchene - 4 Goals (1 PPG, 1 GWG), 4 Assists (1 PPA), 11 Shots, +6
He's been as hot as a press iron these last two weeks (I'm not 100% sure if a "press iron" is a thing, but it sounds like it would emit high temperatures), racking up 7 goals and 5 assists in 7 games since November 1. He only notched a goal and assist in the 10 games of October. His real value is somewhere in the middle.
** Mats Zuccarello - 2 Goals (1 GWG), 5 Assists (1 PPA), 7 Shots, 7 Hits, +5
Dude almost doubled his season output in one single week. Like Duchene, Aw Zuccs has also been on a tear since the calendar rolled over. He has 2 goals and 7 assists in 7 games so far this month. Like Duchene, he's playing a little above his worth, but it's definitely welcomed if you own him. He only has 2 games this week, though.
*** Boone Jenner - 2 Goals (2 PPG, 1 GWG), 3 Assists (2 PPA), 8 Shots, 6 Hits, 10 PIM
Patrick Kane also had a 5 point week, but Jenner topped him by picking up a pair of PPAs, 6 Hits, and 4 more PIMs. Jenner caps off a list of forwards who I predict we'll never see on the Stars of the Week list again.
Rankings: 5 Points - Patrick Kane, 3 Points - 5 players tied
* Erik Karlsson - 3 Goals (1 PPG), 2 Assists (2 PPA), 9 Shots
The #1 fantasy defenseman didn't score a goal in the first 14 games and hadn't yet earned a 3 star nod until this week. Now he's scored in 3 straight. I expect him to close out November with 7 total goals and predict we'll see him here at least one more time before December 1.
** John Klingberg - 2 Goals (1 PPG, 1 GWG), 3 Assists (2 PPA), 9 Shots
Not only is he the first skater to make this section 3 times, but he's made it 3 weeks in a row. Karlsson's 3 goals is the only thing that prevented Klingberg from taking home the 1 star. With 20 total points, including 10 on the power play, this guy is on the verge of being officially elite.
*** Oliver Ekman-Larsson - 2 Goals, 2 Assists (1 PPA), 9 Shots, 11 Hits
Like Karlsson, this is also Ollie's first time on the Stars of the Week list. He has thus far been a bit of a disappointment in the goals department (3 goals), but he's been shooting and hitting as you'd expect (he's on pace to match his 264 shot total from last year and just slightly behind last season's pace for hits). In my defensemen preview, I mentioned that the team he plays on could be a problem for him, and thus far that has been true.
Rankings: 4 Points - John Klingberg, P.K. Subban, Roman Josi, 3 Points - 5 players tied
* Reto Berra - 3 Starts, 3 Wins, 1 Shutout, 89 Saves, 1.00 GAA, .967 SV%
Berra has comfortably taken the reins from "Cream of" Semyon Varlamov, who's now on the IR. I never liked Varlamov (3.26 GAA and .890 SV% this season), so I wouldn't be surprised if Berra stays between the pipes even when Varlamov returns.
** Henrik Lundqvist - 3 Starts, 3 Wins, 1 Shutout, 86 Saves, 1.30 GAA, .956 SV%
He's won 6 straight starts, only gave up 8 total goals in those starts, and he hasn't lost in regulation in a month (1 SO loss - Flyers, 1 OT loss - Devils). This is his third time making this list and is now in a tie with Carey Price at the top of the Stars of the Week goalie category. I hate him.
*** James Reimer - 3 Starts, 3 Wins, 100 Saves, 1.62 GAA, .952 SV%
He's on quite a roll, winning 3 straight games against some good teams (Dallas Stars, Nashville Predators, Vancouver Canucks). In fact, Reimer has actually played well this entire month. He's won 4 of 7 starts, gave up 2 or less goals in all but one of those, and has found himself manning the net on a nightly basis in Toronto. The fact that he plays for Toronto is a problem, though.
Rankings: 5 Points - Henrik Lundqvist, Carey Price, 4 Points - Marc-Andre Fleury, Martin Jones
Tanner Pearson (LW-LAK) - Last two weeks, 2 Goals, 5 Assists, 13 Shots
He's still a little untested, but he's been skating well on the Kings top line and first power play unit. Since I live in L.A., I watch him play a lot. ESPN really likes him, too, saying he's "building off his impressive playoff performance from last season." I find that particularly interesting because 1) Pearson missed the final 3 months after he broke his leg, and 2) the Kings missed the playoffs. Let that be an example of why you should come to me for fantasy information.
Sam Bennett (C/LW-CGY) - This week, 1 Goal (1 PPG), 1 Assist, 9 Hits
I mentioned him last week, and I'm mentioning him again before it's too late. He skated a good amount of minutes again this week and he chipped in a couple points and a nice chunk of hits. My only concern is that he isn't putting a ton of pucks on net - 3 shots in 4 games this week and just 21 total in 17 games. Note: The Flames only have 2 games this week, so don't expect a lot from him in your upcoming matchup.
Oscar Klefbom (D-EDM) - Last two weeks, 2 Goals, 3 Assists (1 PPA), 15 Shots, 14 Blocks
He's seeing a good amount of ice time (currently averaging 21:41/game), plus he's been seeing time on the top power play line. The 22-year-old 1st rounder is starting to find his game on this offensively talented Edmonton Oilers team. He's worth keeping an eye on. Note: The Oilers also only have 2 games this week.
James Reimer (G-TOR) - Last two weeks, 7 Starts, 4 Wins, 32 Saves/Game, 1.81 GAA, .945 SV%
If you're in desperate need of a goalie, Reimer is a decent fill-in right now. He's only owned in 18.6% of ESPN leagues, so he's probably available. Don't expect this level of success to continue, but he's currently playing better than a lot of goalies in the league and he's playing WAY better than the Leafs other goalie, Jonathan Bernier. Clear evidence here.
DEVILS FANTASY VALUE
Mike Cammalleri (LW) - 1 Goal, 2 Assists (1 PPA), 7 Shots
All of his points came in the Penguins game. Also, he somehow managed to block 4 shots in the game against the Blackhawks. He has 7 total all season. Weird.
Adam Henrique (C) - 1 Goal, 2 Assists, 4 Shots
Here's something odd I noticed that probably has no meaning - his ice time has alternated back and forth between 16.5 and 22+ the last 6 games.
Two Point Players - Kyle Palmieri (RW), Lee Stempniak (RW), Sergey Kalinin (RW), David Schlemko (D), and John Moore (D)
These guys all had 2 points in 3 games this week. The first two are the only guys even close to being worth consideration for your team. The last three should only be picked up as the result of a lost bet.
Travis Zajac - 0 Points, 3 Shots
I wanted to point this out because he had 4 points last week and I said it was mostly by luck. In other words, I told ya.
Let's hear about what's good and what's bad in the comment section below.