Week four in the NHL is a bit of a weird one. More often than not we see good teams playing fewer games and worse teams having a more packed schedule. As usual, we will look at players and teams that are worth taking a look at and teams that you should be wary of picking up from this week.
Only five teams this week play four games. The Chicago Blackhawks should be avoided at all costs. While the Detroit Red Wings have a decently tough schedule but are a much-improved team from last season. Nashville Predators start off the week with a very tough back-to-back in Alberta vs the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers, then they finished off the week with a couple of easier games against two teams combining for three total wins to this point. The Ottawa Senators play four games against tougher opponents and they look to get going. The last team that plays four games is the Vegas Golden Knights, who have a favourable schedule as they take an Atlantic Division road trip against the weakest of the bunch.
There are seven teams that only play twice this week which includes the Boston Bruins, Carolina Hurricanes, Colorado Avalanche, Columbus Blue Jackets, Florida Panthers, Los Angeles Kings, and Pittsburgh Penguins.
(Rostered as of Nov. 1, ESPN Fantasy Hockey)
Troy Terry, Anaheim Ducks (17.5% rostered)
Troy Terry and the Anaheim Ducks have been on a scoring tear with points coming from everywhere. I also include two more players from their team later on. He is on an eight-game point streak that started in the second game of the season. In that span, he has five goals and five assists.
He is also currently on a three-game goal-scoring streak after recording the game-winner against the Montreal Canadiens on Ryan Getzlaf’s assist that allowed him to become the franchise leader in points. Terry has played well over 20 minutes a night the past two games and looks to continue to play a ton with his early breakout campaign. Pick him up as soon as you can and ride the hot streak. You never know, it could just last all season.
Alex Iafallo, Los Angeles Kings (55.6%)
Alex Iafallo had himself a game when the Canadiens visited the Kings, recording two goals and an assist, two of those points coming on the power play. It wasn’t only the game against the Canadiens that he was effective in. He added another goal and an assist in the game before and after. As the Kings have started to turn their early struggles into wins, Iafallo has and will continue to be a big part of that success.
He has recorded 20 shots in his last five games and the second line winger is being used in all situations with an underrated chance at tacking on some shorthanded points playing alongside Anze Kopitar.
Adam Henrique, Anaheim Ducks (9.5%)
Adam Henrique has been very effective this year for the Ducks, and even more so recently recording three goals and five points over his past three games. The Ducks’ lines are always interchanging with the number of injuries they have had so far. Right now Henrique is lining up on the second line and receiving a good amount of ice time for a team that is surging offensively as of late, partially led by him. Over the past five days, he has been recording more than four shots a game on average. He goes into November with nine points in 10 games.
Alex Killorn, Tampa Bay Lightning (49.0%)
Alex Killorn is skating on Tampa Bay Lightning’s top line that has just started to get going after a slow start to the 2021-22 season. He is playing with Brayden Point and Anthony Cirelli while also playing on the top power-play unit and receiving time shorthanded. Though he is owned more than anyone else here, somehow it’s still under 50 percent. Add him to your roster if you are able to, as he projects to get a lot of points and playing time on a good team that lost a key player upfront in Nikita Kucherov.
Rasmus Asplund, Buffalo Sabres (1.2%)
This is the one sleeper of the suggested players. He has elevated his play over the last three games for the Buffalo Sabres as he is playing a lot and in all situations. Rasmus Asplund is playing with Tage Thompson and Victor Olofsson on the second line and producing. He has three goals, four points, a plus-3, with four penalty minutes and six shots in that span. He also plays on the top power-play unit and first penalty-killing unit.
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Moritz Seider, Detroit Red Wings (31.1%)
Moritz Seider is the only repeat on this list from last week as the others have either been picked up a lot or have fallen off. As I previously stated, the Red Wings are an improved team, thanks in part to Seider jumping into the lineup this season as a rookie. He leads all rookie defencemen in scoring and is second among rookies behind only teammate Lucas Raymond. Seider has eight assists in nine games.
He is currently on a five-game scoring streak and has four games on the schedule for this week. By the way, the youngsters are driving the offence and success of the Red Wings, I don’t envision the production dropping off too much throughout the season and he could be a great long-term addition to your fantasy team.
Cam Fowler, Anaheim Ducks (24.9%)
Cam Fowler is another player raising his stock on a Ducks team that has figured out how to score. He has assisted on three goals in the past three games and has seven points in 10 games on the season. At times this season, he has played a ton, and Anaheim looks to him in close games as he is a solid veteran presence on the blueline and is paired with Josh Manson on the back-end. His four power-play points this season are also enticing if your fantasy team is lacking in that category. It is rarer to find defencemen on the waiver wire that can contribute power-play points, as on most teams the top unit consists of four forwards and one defenceman.
Jonathan Bernier, New Jersey Devils (4.3%)
Jonathan Bernier’s play should force the New Jersey Devils to take a better look at him in net and get him into more games this year. Ideally, he can split the games 50-50 with Mackenzie Blackwood and continue to put up great numbers all season long. Bernier became the second goalie in franchise history to win his first three games as a part of the Devils. He has only allowed seven goals this year and is sporting a .923 save percentage (SV%).
Mikko Koskinen, Edmonton Oilers (29.8)
Mikko Koskinen has been a pleasant surprise for Edmonton Oilers fans this season. He has never really worked out as a starter in Edmonton after getting paid like one. But he is solid in a backup role. He was forced into a starter role after just two and a half games when Mike Smith went down to injury. With Smith returning soon, he is nothing more than a streaming option early. Projected to start against the Seattle Kraken, he is a great option to add for tonight at the very least against a team that isn’t very offensively gifted and playing for a team that is 6-1-0 on the year.
Koskinen has four wins this season in just four starts. His numbers are easily the best of his career with a 2.26 goals-against average (GAA) and a .934 SV%. He has allowed only one goal against in three of the five games, and his shutout was broken in his last game against the Vancouver Canucks with seven seconds left in the game.
James Reimer, San Jose Sharks (4.3%)
After a very strong start at 4-0-0, the San Jose Sharks dropped off a bit. They are back in games and in the win column thanks to the play of James Reimer in goal. He has allowed three goals in his past three games and won his last start against the Winnipeg Jets. His play hopefully allows him to get more starts moving forward, as he has a 1.13 GAA and .964 SV%.
There are usually lots of options as far as the players listed above go. But if all else fails, it’s never a bad idea to grab a player from a team that plays four times and hope for the best. Any of these players have the best chance at helping your fantasy team out this week and possibly be a long-term solution.
Rob Couch is a THW freelance writer covering mainly the Edmonton Oilers and Philadelphia Flyers. He covers everything you need to know about fantasy hockey. He will also keep you up to date with the NHL Stat Corner and trade talks from around the NHL.