We enter this week's edition of Fantasy Forecast with the Oilers in the middle of a two week road trip. The Oilers have split the first two games of the trip, having their six game winning streak snapped in a 4-2 loss to Phoenix Saturday night. The Oilers will look to start another streak now as they pay a visit to hockey's cathedral tonight, Montreal.
The Oilers still sit atop the Northwest Division with a record of 8-3-2 and have continued to get strong contributions from most of their lineup. The Oilers start a busy week tonight with four games in six days and will need to continue to get strong play from the entire lineup if they hope to walk out with wins in those games.
The return of Ales Hemsky
to the lineup for tonight's game should create some interesting options for fantasy players. His presence in the top-six and on the powerplay should create not just opportunities for himself, but for other offensive players as well. Game LeaderboardSeason LeadersPlayer StatsNot a member? Sign up!TUESDAY NIGHT
No more than one hour following the completion of Tuesday's game vs. Montreal, the newly introduced salaries for all our highlighted players will take effect. Here are this week’s salary amendments:LADISLAV SMID ($1M > $2M)Ladislav Smid
is a great example that it takes more then just points to be a valuable fantasy producer. Smid has been a warrior all season for the Oilers and it has paid off on the fantasy totals.
Despite having no points through the first 13 games, Smid has been able to rack up 133 fantasy points. This total ranks him second on the team among defensemen and is keeping him up with some of the top producers in the lineup. Smid's main contribution is in shot blocking where he not only leads the team, he leads the NHL with 48. This combined with some physical play (22 hits) have made Smid a valuable fantasy option.
Heading into this next week Smid still remains a great value at 2 million. He serves as a great complement to any fantasy lineup. ERIC BELANGER ($3M > $2M)Eric Belanger
has not chipped in offensively the way he is capable of this season. With only one assist in 13 games and a -1 rating so far, Belanger has failed to bring much in the way of fantasy points.
With 69 fantasy points, Belanger has to be a cautionary pick for fantasy players. He does however bring some value in the faceoff circle with 32 wins in that category.
Players should monitor Belanger to see if he can find a way to add some secondary scoring for the Oilers. If he can find a way to do that, then he may be a good buy at 2 million. MAGNUS PAAJARVI ($2M > $1M)
Magnus is far too talented of a hockey player to be posting the numbers that he has so far this season. Playing outside the top-six, Paajarvi is having trouble finding the scoresheet and it's hurting his fantasy value.
Magnus is an offensive player who needs to be putting up points to be valuable in a fantasy pool such as this. With only one assist in 13 games and 57 total fantasy points, Paajarvi was bound to see his salary drop.
Players should continue to keep an eye on Paajarvi to see if he finds his scoring touch during this road trip. If he does show signs of a turnaround, he becomes a steal at 1 million.