Fire On Ice

11/26/2011 1:58 PM -  Evan Reynar

Tim Connolly, C TOR (11GP-3g-8a-11pts, with a +1 and 8 PIMs)

While Connolly may be one of the biggest band-aids in the history of the game, it’s no secret that he is almost always valuable when he actually makes his way into the lineup. With his recent return to the Leafs, Connolly has already racked up a 4-game point streak (2g-5a), and is the solidified number one centerman on a team that’s among the league leaders in offence. Act fast if he’s still available.

 Pascal Dupuis, LW PIT (22GP-4g-13a-17pts, with a +9 and 1 pp point)

How good are the Pittsburgh Penguins this year? Pascal Dupuis is flirting with a point-per-game pace…that good. You can’t even say it’s just a Sidney Crosby thing, considering Dupuis had posted 13 points through 19 games before Sid’s return this week; the best early season pace of Dupuis’ career. Of course, Sid did return this week, and has now boosted this team in to a stratosphere we haven’t seen in a while. Dupuis has 4 points (1g-3a) in 3 games with Crosby in the lineup and his LW position eligibility looks great for your fantasy roster’s depth.

Ryan Whitney, D EDM (5GP-0g-0a-0pts, with an even rating)

Whitney finally returned to the lineup for the Oilers on Friday night and should quickly regain his status as the powerplay quarterback, which looks very nice considering the Oilers are the third highest scoring team in the Western Conference. Yeah, you read that right.

Marc-Edouard Vlasic, D SJ (19GP-2g-9a-11pts, with a +11 and 1 pp point)

With the off-season acquisition of Brent Burns in San Jose, it looked like another hit to Vlasic’s value in fantasy leagues. But in fact, Vlasic, who has only shown flashes of brilliance through his first 5 seasons, has found some nice chemistry as a duo with Burns, and is having some big nights as a result. Vlasic put up 4 points (1g-3) against the Red Wings last Thursday, and a 3 assist effort against the Avalanche on Sunday. He still isn’t going to see much powerplay time but his plus/minus totals on an elite Sharks team should make up for it.

Curtis Sanford, G CLS (5GP 3-0-2, with a 1.27 GAA and .950 SV%)

Kudos to Curtis Sanford for taking full advantage of a chance it looked like he may never get again. A journeyman netminder, who has seen a few cups of coffee over his career, Sanford appears to have fallen into the perfect situation with Columbus. The ‘Jackets had a brutal start to the season but Sanford slipped into the roster just as the pieces were starting to fall into place. To his credit, Sanford hasn’t just performed good enough; he is yet to post a SV% under .900 in a game, and his only two losses have come in shootouts on the road against Boston and New Jersey. Ride him while he’s hot but recognize that he may not be a long term solution. Steve Mason still deserves a chance to see what he can do with this team actually playing well in front of him, and it’s well publicized that Columbus has been on the hunt to acquire a goalie via trade.

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