Each night we’ll take a spin around the NHL and check out the ‘Three Stars’ of the night in terms of Fantasy Hockey.
Max Pacioretty, LW, MON: Pacioretty led the way offensively in a rather surprising 5-1 victory at Bell Centre against the tumbling Philadelphia Flyers. Pacioretty, who finished with two goals, an assist and a plus-3 rating, was very efficient, as he posted just three shots on goal (SOG). He skated on just 20 shifts, and saw only 16:29 of ice time. In fact, he entered the game with just two goals over his first eight games, and none in the past four. He had an even or minus rating in six of his first eight games, so the plus-3 was very welcome to his few Fantasy owners.
Brian Elliott, G, STL: Elliott turned aside all 32 shots he faced in Wednesday’s 3-0 win against the reeling Vancouver Canucks. He continues to shine when given the chance, improving to 4-0-0 with a 1.59 Goals-Against Average (GAA). Elliott has stopped all but seven of the 139 shots fired at him this season for a very impressive .950 save percentage. It appears he has forced his way to the top of a depth chart which was written in very light pencil, forcing G Jaroslav Halak into a reserve role.
Rene Bourque, LW, CGY: Bourque was the difference in a 4-2 victory against the Colorado Avalanche, potting his fourth and fifth goals of the season with a plus-1 rating and two penalty minutes. Bourque also squeezed off a season-high six shots on net. Despite a four-game scoreless streak coming in, his playing time has been rather constant. This season, he has no fewer than 21 shifts in a single game, but no more than 25. His TOI remains around 18 minutes per game, and he is a solid No. 3 or 4 wing or ‘flex’ play in most Fantasy leagues of 12 or more teams.
Fantasy dud of the night
Ryan Kesler, C, VAN: For the second straight night, a Vancouver Canucks player graces the ‘Fantasy dud of the night’. The Livonia, Mich. native was scoreless with a minus-2 rating with two SOG on 25 shifts in 18:09 TOI. He has managed just five points (1 G, 1 A) in five games, getting off to a rather sluggish start for the defending Western Conference champions.