Welcome to week 16 of the Fantasy Planner, getting you ready for next week's fantasy hockey action. (1/18 through 1/24).
Week 16 Matchups
Teams with 4 games: Atlanta, Buffalo, Carolina, Columbus, Dallas, Florida, New Jersey, NY Isles, Ottawa, Philadelphia, San Jose, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Toronto
Teams with 2 games: Calgary
It's a pretty full schedule in the NHL this week, with the Flames as the only team playing less than three games. Calgary is at San Jose and then returns home to face Chicago. If you're banking on Kiprusoff, you may want to look to your bench this week.
Half the teams in the league are looking at four games this week, but the most favorable schedule probably belongs to Atlanta. They face Florida, Toronto, Carolina, and Tampa Bay. In case you're keeping track, that's the four worst teams in the East. A decent showing could put the Thrashers in the playoff picture by next week, as they're currently only two points out. Look for Pavelec to have a big week.
The Flyers may also be looking at a big week, as they have all four games at home, including mathcups with the Hurricanes and Columbus.
Mike Green (D - WAS)
No surprise that Green would be on the hot list. He is the top fantasy defenseman in the NHL. Lately, he's really hit his stride. Green has 14 points in his last 11 games, including 6 goals. Those numbers are almost unheard of for a defenseman in the past decade, but it's come to be expected from the Capitals star.
Jonas Hiller (G - ANA)
Just when it seemed the Ducks were ready to write off the season, in steps Hiller and turns things around. (Prior to last night), he was riding a 5 game win streak and has won 10 of his last 13. His GAA is under 2 in the month of January. Hiller has pretty much claimed the #1 job back in Anaheim.
John Tavares (F - NYI)
Tavares really seems to have hit the wall midway through his rookie campaign. Over his past 15 games, Tavares has managed to tally just 2 lousy points. It may be time to move on and draft him again next season. Then again, don't be surprised to see him storm back down the stretch after getting some rest during the Olympic Break. If you drop him, I'll pick him up.
Ryan Whitney (D - ANA)
Whitney climbed as high as 16th among defensemen just a few weeks back. However, in the past nine games, he hasn't shown up on the scoresheet. Unless you count his -6 over that span. Hang on to him, he'll be back on track soon.
You have to really feel for Henrik Lundqvist. He practically goes two straight games without letting up a goal and he has no wins to show for it. Will someone in a Blue Shirt please score a goal for this guy?
Here are a few names who may be available in your league and are worth a look:
Josh Bailey (F - NYI)
The scoring has been wildly inconsistent coming from the island this season. Early on, fantasy owners jumped all over Matt Moulson. Tavares and Okposo have heated up at times, but have been inconsistent lately. Seems like the flavor of the month is now Josh Bailey. Bailey is currently riding a 7 game point streak. During that run, he's racked up 3 goals and 8 assists. This is only Bailey's second season, so it's hard to know whether we should expect this run to continue. Given the logo on his shirt, I'd grab him for the short term and trade him for value.
Steve Sullivan (F - NAS)
Check your waiver wire, as Sullivan is still available in about half the leagues on CBS. He's back to a point a game pace in January. Sullivan is a proven fantasy performer, and should be on a roster.