Fantasy hockey has been a common past time for all hockey enthusiasts over the years.
After two weeks of the NHL regular season, and about two to three weeks of fantasy hockey, it is time to make crucial waiver claims and drops.
The goalies will be divided into two categories; studs and duds. Studs are the goalies who are currently trending upwards, who have been playing well and consistently over the past few games.
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These are the goalies that are worth trading for or picking up in the free agency list.
They are also the goalies who will most likely continue to perform at their level throughout the season. The duds are the goalies who have been performing poorly who should be traded away or dropped.
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1. Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens
Carey Price has been the pillar for the Montreal Canadien's terrific start this season. Price currently posts a 1.00 GAA, a .966 save percentage and a 6-0 record. He also posted two shutouts and made 176 saves throughout the six games he played so far. Price's games were not easy at all as he shut out the New York Rangers and the St. Louis Blues. He also held the Pittsburgh Penguin's arsenal of offensive talent to only two goals.
Due to Price's spectacular performance, the Montreal Canadiens are on the verge of breaking their best start of the season record on Saturday. Carey Price should be regarded as the best fantasy hockey goalie due to his incredible stats. If you could trade or pick up Carey Price in your fantasy hockey league, do so immediately.
2. Pekka Rinne, Nashville Predators
Pekka Rinne has been doing extremely well for the Nashville Predators so far this season. Rinne currently holds a 5-1 record, a .933 save percentage and a 1.82 GAA. Rinne faced 165 shots and made one shutout so far this season. Rinne has been one of the most consistent, and most talented goalies last season as well.
One of the factors that Rinne is one of the best fantasy goalies this year is due to Nashville's defense. Nashville has one of the best defenses in the league with Shea Weber, Roman Josi, Seth Jones and Mattias Ekholm producing and defending very effectively in front of Rinne. Rinne is a must have goalie for any fantasy league due to his raw talent and consistency.
3. Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
Henrik Lundqvist has held up his title of "King Henry" and he has defended his castle (the net) very well this season. Lundqvist currently holds a 4-2-1 record with a .938 save percentage. After facing a whopping 224 shots, Lundqvist has been able to hold his opposition to only 14 goals and currently holds a 1.99 GAA.
Like Rinne, Lundqvist plays with arguably the best defense in the entire league. The Ranger's defense boasts defensive talents such as Ryan McDonagh, Keith Yandle, Dan Boyle, Marc Staal, Kevin Klein, and Dan Girardi. With an extremely experienced and physically dominant defense in front of him, Lundqvist is able to make a lot of easy saves. Lundqvist is currently one of the best fantasy options due to his consistency, talent, and the defense in front of him.
Honorable mentions: Marc-Andre Fleury (Pittsburgh Penguins), Martin Jones (San Jose Sharks), Antti Niemi (Dallas Stars), Cory Schneider (New Jersey Devils), Roberto Luongo (Florida Panthers)
1. Sergei Bobrovsky, Columbus Blue Jackets
Columbus has been absolutely horrific so far this year after losing eight straight games to start of the season. In fact, Columbus has been so bad that they have brought in an extremely costly new coach, John Tortorella, and they even lost to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Bobrovsky has been one of the reasons why Columbus has been doing so badly so far this season. He currently posts a .84 save percentage, a 4.72 GAA, and six straight losses. Bobrovsky also plays with an extremely weak team in front of him, so he is not to blame for Columbus' failures. Bobrovsky is not bad enough to drop in your fantasy league, but definitely look for a trade as Bobrovsky's record will likely hurt your team rather than help it.
2. Tuukka Rask, Boston Bruins
Tuukka Rask was and still is a great goalie despite his terrible start to the season so far. The former Stanley Cup winner currently posts a .864 save percentage as well as a 4.4 GAA. Out of the five games Rask has played this season, he only managed to win one of those games. This looks like an absolute nightmare for Boston.
However, despite Rask's poor performance, Rask will bounce back. With Zdeno Chara back in the lineup and Dennis Seidenberg soon returning, Rask will have better defensemen helping him out in the back end.
Furthermore, Rask is a proven top tier fantasy goalie, and this is not likely to change as he still is a great goalie despite his awful record. Keep Rask on your roster and DO NOT drop him or trade him due to his low fantasy value.
3. Anton Khudobin, Anaheim Ducks
Anton Khudobin has never played well in the NHL level. He struggled throughout his career to establish himself as a number one goaltender for any team. Khudobin currently holds a .875 save percentage as well as a 1-2 record and a 4.22 GAA. These numbers are absolutely terrible in comparison to Frederick Andersen, the regular starter for the Ducks.
Khudobin will most likely play as the backup goalie for the Anaheim Ducks this season, lowering his fantasy value even more. If you have Khudobin in your team, drop him as he is not relevant in fantasy hockey anymore due to his position in Anaheim's team and his poor performance.