Fire on Ice

03/21/2011 12:33 AM -  Evan Reynar

Mike Knuble, RW, WAS (70GP-19g-14a-33pts, with a +9 and 34 PIMs)

As we come down to the stretch in the regular season and the fantasy playoffs we need to only be looking at guys that can help us right now, and among them, Knuble might be your best bet. The Caps are the hottest team in the league with wins in 13 of their last 16 and Knuble is lighting the lamp regularly. He has 9 points (5g-4a) in his last 11 with a +7 over that stretch. He might not blow you away with his point totals, but his weekly contributions should be on the positive side for the remaining weeks.

Matt D’Agostini, RW, STL (72GP-17g-21a-38pts, with a +4 and 38 PIMs)

D’Agostini may not have the supporting cast of Knuble, but his recent play in St. Louis has been every bit as exceptional. Seeing a ton of ice for a Blues’ squad just playing out the season, D’Agostini has been blazing up the scoresheet the past two weeks posting 10 points (4g-6a) in 7 games. He’s quietly made huge strides in his game this year and is still widely available in fantasy leagues.

Dmitry Kulikov, D, FLO (62GP-6g-19a-25pts, with a +5 and 43 PIMs)

There’s no doubt that Kulikov will be a big part of the Panthers D-core for years to come as he continues to develop nicely in his second year. His fantasy value has struggled to gain momentum for a variety of reasons this year, but it appears the Panthers will be looking to lean on him heavily for the rest of the season. He’s playing top d-man minutes right now for a steady Panthers team and it’s translated to a solid 6 points (1g-5a) over the last 8 games.

Ray Emery, G, ANA (3GP-2-0-0, with a 0.870 GAA and .972 SV%)

Love him or hate him, the return of Ray Emery to the NHL this past week has to be one of the great stories of the season. Returning from a devastating hip ailment that threatened not only his career but also his ability to walk, Emery has been nothing short of amazing right from his AHL assignment up through his first 3 games back in NHL action. He’s won both of his starts and given up just 2 goals on 72 shots faced. Dan Ellis is winning games for the Ducks as well, but Emery has been a brick wall. Expect more starts to come Emery’s way until Jonas Hiller gets over the spins.

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