Injuries are a fact of life in any Fantasy Hockey league. Sure there may be seasons in which it seems that your team is getting more than their fair share of injuries, but really, those are the breaks and whining about it doesn’t make life any better. This is why we preach over and over again to make sure you have the appropriate depth on your roster. There will always be seasons in which your roster won’t be deep enough, no matter how much depth you have. We all have seasons like that; but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go down fighting. It’s only November; there’s plenty of time to make up ground in the standings even if you do own several players currently on injured reserve.
One of those IR players is the Ducks’ Corey Perry. He has gone from being day to day with the flu to being placed on IR with a viral gland infection to having the mumps. This would seem like quite an escalation to me. Perry has been told to stay away from the team, as he is contagious. Defenseman Francois Beauchemin is also in the same boat, but both are expected to return to the team next week. By the way, if you’re holding out hope that Dany Heatley will return to form, or just be any kind of productive, it’s time to move on. If you need a wing from Anaheim, try Jakob Silfverberg if he’s still available.
Zach Parise owners can step back off the ledge, as the top wing for the Wild is expected to return this weekend from a concussion. It was originally thought that Parise could return Thursday, but the Wild may have decided to play it safe when they needed a roster spot, as two of their defensemen (Marco Scandella and Jonas Brodin) came down with an illness and weren’t able to play Thursday. The Wild decided to place Parise on IR thus opening a spot for a d-man to be called up from the AHL. There is no need to worry about the IR placement for Parise, he is eligible to be taken off at any time.
Dan Boyle is slated to return to the Rangers’ lineup Thursday, and although he’s not the player he once was, you’re probably still going to have to insert him back into your lineup immediately. Every Fantasy Hockey team needs defensemen that are going to play on the top power play unit and that should be where Boyle will find himself.
Top prospect Connor McDavid will be out 4-5 weeks after breaking his hand during a fight Tuesday. Now, McDavid isn’t of any interest to Fantasy Hockey owners this season, but he’s expected to be either the first or second overall pick next season, or the next superstar to enter the league. The injury isn’t expected to change his draft status.
The Blues’ T.J. Oshie was activated off of IR and will play Thursday, as he has recovered from his concussion. Should he be immediately started for your Fantasy Hockey team? No, not unless you have no other options. It looks like St. Louis will ease him back into the flow of things by either playing him on the third line or limiting his minutes. Also, it’s not like he was off to the best of starts before the injury.
The Stars traded Sergei Gonchar to the Canadiens for Travis Moen earlier this week. What does this mean for Fantasy owners? Not a whole lot. While the Canadiens have had all sorts of problems with their power play, Gonchar is not going to replace P.K. Subban or Andrei Markov on the first unit, and playing 30-40 seconds on the second unit probably isn’t enough to justify a roster spot. He is 40 years of age, and although he may be a future Hall of Famer, he’s unlikely to help your team this year.
It looks like the Islanders’ Jaroslav Halak has solved his early season problems. He’s presided over back to back shutouts and it may be time to get him back in your lineup. The Islanders are a better team than most people think; they have upgraded their defense with Nick Leddy and Johnny Boychuk, and we know they can score. Halak doesn’t have to be a brick wall to be valuable in Fantasy Hockey, he just can’t be a sieve.
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