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1 week agoThe Dallas Stars inked defenseman Esa Lindell to a six-year, $34.8 million ($5.8 million AAV) contract on Thursday. The restricted free-agent was due for a major pay-day (coming off a two-year, $2.2 million AAV deal) after having a career-season with 32 points (11 goals, 21 assists), 81 blocked shots, 143 hits, a plus-14 rating while sitting second on the team with 24:20 of time-on-ice per game. The 24-year-old further emphasized his value in 13 playoff games this spring - contributing four points and playing an average of 26:58 throughout the second round. Slotting alongside John Klingberg on the Stars' top defensive pair, Lindell has emerged as a must-own fantasy asset and could see his value rise even more in 2019-2020 as his offensive production should continue to improve.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource:
1 week agoLatvian goaltender Elvis Merzlikins has signed a one-year contract to join the Columbus Blue Jackets next season. The 25-year-old, having played the last seven seasons in the Swiss National League, is expected to compete for the Jacket's starting netminder role in 2019-2020 as the team seems likely to lose both Sergei Bobrovsky and Keith Kinkaid to free agency. Coming off a campaign in which the Latvian goaltender posted a 2.44 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage in 43 starts with HC Lugano, Merzlikins could be a guy to keep an eye on when training camp gets going in September.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: TSN
1 week agoAnaheim Ducks center Ryan Kesler is likely to miss the entire 2019-2020 campaign after having hip surgery on his right hip back on May 9th. The 34-year-old has missed significant time due to hip issues over the past two seasons and has seen his offensive production fade (just 22 points in 104 games since the 2016-2017 season) while having to play through significant pain. As of right now, it's unknown if the nine-time 20-goal scorer will make a return to the NHL. With 573 points (258 goals, 315 assists), 920 penalty minutes and 175 power-play points in 1,001 career NHL games, Kesler's days of being fantasy relevant have likely come to a close.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource:
1 week agoColorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon will not need surgery to repair the shoulder he injured in Game 7 of the second round versus the San Jose Sharks. The 23-year-old superstar is expected to be ready to go when the Avalanche break training camp in September. MacKinnon is coming off another remarkable season in Colorado, following up a 99-point (41 goals, 58 assists) campaign with 13 points in 12 playoff contests. He's certainly a candidate to eclipse the century club in points next year and given his contribution in shots (365) and power-play points (37) during 2018-2019, MacKinnon should be an undisputed top-five fantasy pick headed into drafts this fall.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource:
2 weeks agoBoston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask allowed two goals on 31 shots in Thursday's 5-2 victory in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Rask and the Bruins found themselves down 2-1 midway through the second period, but power-play goals by Marcus Johansson and Patrice Bergeron gave the B's a lead that they wouldn't relinquish. Charlie Coyle and Chris Wagner added late goals in the third period to make the score look more lopsided than the game actually was. The teams are back in action on Sunday afternoon for Game 2.--Daniel E. Dobish - RotoBallerSource: ESPN
2 weeks agoCarolina Hurricanes left wing Micheal Ferland (upper body) returned to action in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Bruins on Thursday. He was a bit rusty, getting outskated early in the first period on a goal by Steven Kampfer. He skated on the fourth line with Greg McKegg and Jordan Martinook, picking up an assist on McKegg's marker midway through the second period. That was the last hurrah for the Canes, as they coughed up four unanswered goals in the 5-2 loss. The Canes will look to rebound in Game 2 on Sunday afternoon.--Daniel E. Dobish - RotoBallerSource: ESPN
2 weeks agoCarolina Hurricanes goaltender Petr Mrazek (lower body) returned to action for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Bruins on Thursday after missing the final two games of the Semifinals against the New York Islanders due to a lower-body injury. Mrazek allowed four goals on 27 shots in the setback, although two of the goals were of the power-play variety, and the first goal allowed just 2:55 into the game was partially due to a misplay by forward Micheal Ferland. Mrazek and the Hurricanes will look to bounce back in Game 2 on Sunday afternoon.--Daniel E. Dobish - RotoBallerSource: ESPN
2 weeks agoSan Jose Sharks center Joe Pavelski certainly made his first appearance of the Western Conference Semifinals count after missing the first six games due to injury. The 34-year-old opened the scoring with a sneaky deflection and also added an assist across 19:49 of ice time during a 3-2 win over the Colorado Avalanche. Pavelski is an integral part of the Sharks offense and will continue to lead by example in the next round. He is a worthy DFS play any time he takes the ice in the playoffs.--Raymond Harrison - RotoBallerSource:
3 weeks agoColorado Avalanche forward Colin Wilson has continued his steady playoff power-play production after scoring his third power-play goal in the last five games. Despite scoring only 12 goals in the regular season, Wilson has scored four already this postseason, with all but one coming on the man advantage. He has been reaping the rewards of having linemate Mikko Rantanen moved down to the second line, as well as finding his way onto the top power-play unit and as long as he keeps this deployment, he should be a cheaper but dependable scoring option. If his usage becomes less favorable, though, he will quickly lose his value in daily formats.--Russ Ivanac - RotoBallerSource:
3 weeks agoColorado Avalanche goaltender Philipp Grubauer stopped all 32 of the shots that he faced on Thursday, leading the Avalanche to a series-tying victory in Game 4. After a relatively down year for Grubauer in the regular season, posting a .917 save percentage, the playoffs have been a revelation for him where he has a .930 save percentage over nine games. After dominating the Calgary offensive attack in the first round, Grubauer struggled against San Jose, allowing 10 goals on 90 shots through the first three games. Game 4 was a completely different story, however, and was a dramatic return to the playoff magic Grubauer has seemed to capture. He is a much better option at home, with a .945 save percentage at home this postseason, and is a solid play when the series returns to Colorado.--Russ Ivanac - RotoBallerSource:
3 weeks agoBoston Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron had a huge game on Thursday night as the Bruins tied up the series at two games each. Bergeron had failed to register a point through the first three games of the series but exploded with two power-play goals, including the game-winning goal. He also sent seven shots on net, which is the most he has had in a single game since an early February regular season game, indicating that the Bruins and Marchand made a concerted effort to get him going. After converting on only one of their first 10 power-play opportunities in this series, Boston finally broke through and lived up to their regular season reputation, where they posted the third highest power-play conversion rate.--Russ Ivanac - RotoBallerSource:
3 weeks agoColumbus Blue Jackets forward Artemi Panarin picked up the lone goal for Columbus in Thursday night's 4-1 loss to Boston. Panarin leads the series in goals (three) and points (five), scoring in all but one of the four games so far. Incidentally, Panarin logged more than 20 minutes of ice time for the third time this series and has scored a point in every game that he has seen at least 20 minutes of time on ice. Columbus has shown a willingness to ride Panarin as much as possible, and he will continue to get every chance to keep collecting points at an elite level.--Russ Ivanac - RotoBallerSource:
3 weeks agoSt. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington allowed four goals on 31 shots in Wednesday's Game 4 loss against the Dallas Stars in the Western Conference Semifinals. One of the goals he allowed was a power-play marker, but the other three were even-strength tallies. Binnington and Ben Bishop are locked in quite the battle in this series, which appears destined to go seven. After going 24-5-1 with a 1.89 goals-against average and .927 save percentage in 30 starts and 32 games in the regular season, the rookie is 6-4-0 with a 2.80 GAA and .906 save percentage in 10 postseason starts. Game 5 is set for Friday night back in St. Louis.--Daniel E. Dobish - RotoBallerSource: ESPN
3 weeks agoDallas Stars goaltender Ben Bishop allowed just two goals on 29 shots in a Game 4 victory against the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday night in the Western Conference Semifinals as the Stars evened up the series 2-2. He is 2-2-0 with a 2.78 goals-against average and .906 save percentage through four games in this series against the team which originally drafted him in the third round (85th overall) back in 2005. The series shifts back to St. Louis for a pivotal Game 5 on Friday night.--Daniel E. Dobish - RotoBallerSource: ESPN
3 weeks agoDallas Stars center Tyler Seguin posted a pair of assists with a plus-one rating and three shots on goal in Wednesday's Game 3 victory in the Western Conference Semifinals against the St. Louis Blues. Head coach Jim Montgomery shook up his lines, dropping Seguin from the top line to the second line with Jason Dickinson and Mats Zuccarello. Seguin responded favorably with the two helpers, as the trio combined for five points. Dickinson scored with a plus-one, while Zuccarello had two apples and a plus-one. Game 5 is set for Friday night back in St. Louis.--Daniel E. Dobish - RotoBallerSource: ESPN
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