Some suggestions on players to add or avoid in your hockey pool this week

The Canadian Press
Dec 18, 2006
The Hockey News

Some suggestions on players to add or avoid in your hockey pool this week

The Canadian Press
Dec 18, 2006

Fantasy hockey owners who stayed with their struggling Calgary players couldn't be happier about this turn of events. But there's likely some hidden gold in them there foothills, because less patient poolies cast aside the under-achievers.

Calgary has picked up 13 of a possible 16 points in its last eight games and, of course, it's been Jarome Iginla leading the way with seven goals and 17 points.

As goes the captain, so go his linemates.

Winger Alex Tanguay, brutal and booed in his first few weeks in Calgary, scored three goals and six points last week. The underrated Daymond Langkow centres the line and, with a plus-seven and 10 points in six games, is a must-start in any pool format.

Scoring is contagious and, yes, Flames fever has spread beyond the top line.

Matthew Lombardi now has 10 goals and 10 assists as well as an impressive plus-15 rating on the season. Kristian Huselius also has 10 goals and is on pace for a career-best 50 points. Both are worth owning.

Iginla's not the only captain in Canada leading by example and turning his team around.

Mats Sundin broke out of a slump that coincided with a Leafs' seven-game skid. He picked up two goals and seven points as Toronto reeled off three straight wins last week.

His linemate Alexei Ponikarovsky had five points in Saturday's game alone and continues to prove he's a solid fantasy hockey contributor.

Meanwhile, Kyle Wellwood had a hat trick in that same game. With eight points in four games, Wellwood should now get the pool attention he deserves.

Captain Saku Koivu is also on a roll in Montreal with nine points in his last six games. Linemate Michael Ryder is tagging along with seven points in those same six games.

Poolies looking to cash in on that line's play should make a grab for Christopher Higgins. He's back with Koivu and Ryder after missing 18 games with an ankle sprain.


Waiver Watch

Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson and Alexei Yashin of the Islanders returned to their respective lineups after missing time with injuries. Both scorers should be immediately activated in all pools.

Former Hab Mike Ribeiro has found a happy home in Dallas. He's picked up five points in replacing Mike Modano (injured hip) on the first line. Modano is expected back later this week but the modest production could earn Ribeiro a spot on the Stars' second line.

Toronto cast-off Mikael Tellqvist is the goalie of the moment in Phoenix.

He's won three games for the Coyotes this month. But in giving up 19 goals in his last four starts, he's not highly recommended.

Alexei Zhitnik was traded from the Islanders to the Flyers last week in exchange for fellow defenceman Freddy Meyer. Neither is really worth owning though Zhitnik can help in pools that reward plus-minus and penalty minutes.


Injury Update

Phil Kessel received a huge scare when he recently was diagnosed with testicular cancer.

Happily, the prognosis is good. The gifted centre will be back with the Bruins in the new year and poolies in keeper leagues should certainly hang onto him.

Is anyone still hanging onto Avalanche defenceman Jordan Leopold waiting for him to break out? Or to even get a single point?

Time's up.

He's out a month with a groin injury and can now be mercifully put out to pasture. Send along Leafs winger Nik Antropov (ankle) to keep him company.

Peter Forsberg has a well-documented reputation as an injury risk, but this is ridiculous. He returned after missing two weeks with a foot injury only to be knocked out of the game with a concussion.

Put him on reserve and monitor his progress. Perhaps you've heard that before.


Greg Dennis can be reached at cp.pool(at)

Some suggestions on players to add or avoid in your hockey pool this week:

Who's Hot

1. C Daymond Langkow, Flames. Quietly picks up 11 points in December.

2. D Philippe Boucher, Stars. Three goals and six points in four-game streak.

3. C David Vyborny, Blue Jackets. Nine points and plus-six in last five games.

4. LW Ryan Malone, Penguins. A hat trick and eight points for Sid's new wingman.

5. G Chris Mason, Predators. Sensational in Vokoun's absence with four straight wins.

Who's Not

1. RW Shane Doan, Coyotes. No goals and minus-six in eight games this month.

2. RW Joffrey Lupul, Oilers. A major disappointment with two points in past 12 games.

3. C Matt Stajan, Leafs. The team's hot but he's scoreless in 10 straight games.

4. G Marc Denis, Lightning. Three ugly losses last week cement his status as backup.

5. C Radek Bonk, Canadiens. No points is one thing, but a minus-four on the week?

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Some suggestions on players to add or avoid in your hockey pool this week