New year, new push for your Fantasy Hockey head-to-head championships. As always, weekly or daily streaming moves are key to success. So who will you stream in Week 14 Fantasy Hockey? All streamers listed below are owned in less than 50% of Fantrax leagues as I write.
Week 14 Fantasy Hockey Planner
Weekly Lineup Picks
Standard disclaimer: weekly leagues aren’t about what days games are on, they are about how many games your guys play. A 4-game guy only needs to be half as good as a 2-game player to match the results. Win games played every week.
Week 14 Fantasy Hockey Schedule Grid:
Some people can be disappointed when the holidays end and everyone returns to their normal weekly routines. A silver lining for fantasy hockey players is that the schedule returns to normal, which means more choices for your streamers. Where there were only 10 quality games last week, there are 16 this coming week. Where there were only four teams with 4-game schedules, there will be eight in week 14. That gives us better candidates and greater hopes of success. Raise your standards and prepare your lineups.
My Week 14 4-game skater targets:
Christian Dvorak (C/LW – ARI) helms the first line of the Coyote offense. All four current starting centers meet my criteria for streaming, but why not go for the one who has been paired with Taylor Hall on one side and either Phil Kessel or Conor Garland on the other. Couple that with 16:28 ATOI (2:39 on the power play) and Dvorak is a good gamble. Dvorak’s peripherals are not great, but he still puts up roughly 2 shots, half a hit, and half a block per game.
Sami Vatanen (D – NJ) is an example of one of my favorite fantasy principles. Even if the Devils are done, their players are not. Vatanen is a mainstay of New Jersey’s PP1. In the 8 games since Taylor Hall left the Devils, Vatanen has 8 points (3 on the power play.) Vatanen’s 2 shots per game are impressive for a Defenseman. His 1+ hits and nearly 2 blocks will help your peripherals. While New Jersey faces stiff competition in Week 14 (including games against the Isles, Caps, and Lightning), Vatanen is one of the few consistent assets on his roster.
Nick Suzuki (C/RW – MON) may still be available in your league – act quickly if he is. The 20-year-old rookie broke out with 8 points in his last 7 games (3 on the power play) as he has also seen ATOI crest over 20 minutes with over 3 on the power play. I like the recent move to pair Suzuki with fellow young guns Max Domi and Artturi Lehkonen, although the addition of Ilya Kovalchuk further muddies likely Canadiens’ line combinations. 3/4 of a hit and half a block per game are nice peripherals, and Suzuki’s possession stats are positive so far this year. Do not pick Suzuki to target the shots category, as he averages fewer than 2 per game.
Jake Virtanen (RW – VAN) should not be pulling this off. He has 9 points in his last 9 games, with 5 of those points coming on the power play. His seasonal shooting percentage is 15.2% compared to a career 9.4%. His ATOI for the season is 12:17 and his power-play minutes are not coming alongside the likes of Pettersson and Hughes. 2 shots and nearly 2 hits a game with these minimal minutes provide room for upside. I give you permission to chance this hot streak.
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Daily Head-to-Head Streamers:
If you have been following this column for a while, you know I love the four quality game schedule. Toronto and Winnipeg enjoy 3 quality games during week 14.
Nearly as much as a 3 or 4 quality game week, I enjoy a good Monday/Wednesday schedule. The truth is unless you have either very limited roster moves or multiple streaming spots, you can make multiple moves to keep pumping up your roster on off-nights. If you grab a player with two quality games, but they come on Monday and Sunday, you miss opportunities for additional starts during the week. With a Monday/Wednesday or even a Monday/Tuesday player, by contrast, you can bank two games and then discard for a Friday/Sunday player mid-week. LA joins the Leafs and Jets in playing Monday and Wednesday in week 14.
Daily Streaming Targets for Week 14 Fantasy Hockey:
Alexander Kerfoot (C/LW/RW – TOR) saw his prospects for a top-six role improve with the brutal loss of Ilya Mikheyev to a skate lacerating the artery and multiple tendons in his wrist. Kerfoot slid in next to the red-hot John Tavares and William Nylander. While Kerfoot is not a mainstay on the power play, this kind of even-strength deployment will make him fantasy-relevant for a while. Do not expect peripherals — Kerfoot has taken just over a shot a game this year, in line with his three-year career norms. His hits and blocks range around 3/4 of each per game.
Tyler Toffoli (LW/RW – LA) competes with Jeff Carter as an unsung fantasy asset on a miserable LA team. While the merits of both could be debated over the course of the season, I’ll take Toffoli’s 20+ ATOI with 3+ on the power play he had in the final two games of 2019. He scored in each. His 2.5 shots and half a block per game are part of a steady decline from the 27-year-old winger, but still excellent streamer ballast.
Nick Leddy (D- NYI) is neither a Jet, a Leaf, or a King. While I could dig deeper on one of those rosters, I am resorting to a player with a Monday/Tuesday back to back. As a Defenseman, you probably will be able to shoehorn him into your Tuesday lineup before moving on to a new streamer Wednesday. Leddy has 17 points in 31 games this season, including 6 in his last 6 games. While his power-play time on ice is not high, the points for Leddy are really the sprinkles on top of a solid hit, block, and shot per game.
Jonathan Bernier (G – DET) Jimmy Howard has no wins, one soft tissue injury and one good start since October. Bernier, on the other hand, has an NHL net and has done well since returning from a groin injury. He saved 37 of 39 shots at Tampa Bay, then posted a 34-save shutout over the Sharks on New Year’s Eve. With a home game against the Habs on Tuesday, followed by visits from the Senators and Sabres on quality game nights of Friday and Sunday, Bernier is facing probably the most favorable stretch he may all season. It is a gamble to add him, but worth considering if you can risk your ratios.
My weekly podcast Fantasy Hockey Life is right here on FantraxHQ. Listen in for more streamer suggestions, great guest interviews, analysis, and general fantasy hockey tomfoolery. Find it wherever you download podcasts.
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