Saturday, December 29, 2018
Goalie Announcements (Dec 29)
Holy cow! I'm running late this morning, there's a game at 11am MT and it's a full slate of action. What's a guy to do? Pitter patter, I guess.
This post could seem a bit rushed, but I'll try to cover what I can here for you.
Curtis McElhinney (Wilton) versus Mackenzie Blackwood (N/A)
The Hurricanes and the Devils are the early game today and Wilton will finally get another start out of Curtis McElhinney today, making his third appearance for his pool team since activating him from the Waiver Draft. Wilton's team is on 8 points this week, 5 points clear of the basement and 12 points back of the top.
Marc-Andre Fleury (Troy) versus Jonathan Quick (Derek B.)
A 2pm MT start for the Golden Knights and the Kings should make for an interesting contest. Neither team has their goalies confirmed this early in the morning, but I think it's fair to assume that both number one guys will get the nod today. Both pool teams are right in the middle of the pack this week, still fairly safe, but with lots of action today, anything can happen.
Martin Jones (Brenda & Seward) versus Cam Talbot (Mike)
The San Jose Sharks confirmed their starting goalie last night, so we know that Martin Jones will go in another one of the three 2pm MT starts here on Saturday. Brenda & Seward are slowly clawing their way back out of last place, now only 2 points back of 24th and a win over the struggling Oilers could be exactly what the doctor needs. Still no word on the Edmonton goalie, but we're thinking it'll be Talbot.
Devan Dubnyk (Wes) versus Connor Hellebuyck (Jeremy)
A big Central Division clash in Winnipeg this afternoon, when the Wild go in to visit the Jets. We've seen Devan Dubnyk's name posted up in the interwebs this morning, so it looks like he'll get the go and we're left to assume that it will be Connor Hellebuyck for the Jets. Wes' team is on 7 points this week, while Jeremy's team is a couple points back and much closer to the basement troubles.
Tuukka Rask (Jesse) versus Carter Hutton (Wes)
The Bruins confirmed that Tuukka Rask is going against the Sabres in Buffalo tonight, so we at least know that much. Jesse's team is another one on 7 points and is poised to have a busy weekend with 15 total projected games between today and tomorrow, so his team should remain safe. We're expecting to see Carter Hutton tonight for the Sabres, giving Wes another start today, since Linus Ullmark is under the weather and won't dress.
Robin Lehner (Chelsea) versus Garret Sparks (Grant)
Our weekly and new overall leader, Grant, gets another start out of his Toronto keeper, Garret Sparks, since Frederik Andersen is currently dealing with a groin injury and won't dress on Saturday. Grant has had a whale of a start this week, 20 points in the first couple nights of the shortened week and he continues to get help from the back end. The Islanders haven't confirmed anything about their netminding today, but Lehner was the first guy off of practice yesterday, which makes this an educated guess.
Braden Holtby (Stacey C.) versus Marcus Hogberg (N/A)
Nothing confirmed about the goaltending between the Capitals and the Senators tonight, but if I was Washington, I would possibly consider going with the backup tonight against the weakened Senators, who are on back-to-backs and without their number one goalie. Then again, I'm sure Stacey would prefer to see Braden Holtby in the net, that sounds like an easy 2 points.
Michael McNiven (N/A) versus Andrei Vasilevskiy (Dale C.)
The Tampa Bay Lightning will get the Carey Price-less Montreal Canadiens tonight, who are also on back-to-back nights, so there is some concern over who might be getting the start today. The Bolts, however, are expected to run with their number one guy tonight, Andrei Vasilevskiy, giving Dale C. a start for his team, which has only posted 5 points this week in the scoring race.
Carter Hart (N/A) versus James Reimer (Dale C.)
Good news for Dale C. today, a pair of starts from the goalies in the Sunshine State, as James Reimer will get the second half of back-to-backs tonight, facing the Philly phenom, Carter Hart. If Dale's team is going to avoid the Basement Dweller, currently only 2 points clear, he'll need some help from both of these goalies, who also have drawn non-pool goalies as their opposition. That has to work in his favour, right?
Matt Murray (N/A) versus Jake Allen (Steve)
The St. Louis Blues have tapped Jake Allen once again, as they try and keep the momentum of back-to-back wins on the schedule against the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight. Steve's team is tied for 2nd in weekly scoring with 12 points, 8 points back of Grant's team, but his goalie will get a tough assignment, as the Penguins have won their last four games and it looks like, not confirmed though, that Matt Murray is back to being the number one guy again.
Henrik Lundqvist (Scott) versus Pekka Rinne (John P.)
Nothing confirmed for the Rangers and Predators tonight, but the schedule should allow for the big boys to take to the crease tonight. Scott's team is still struggling to find points, down at 4 points this week, while John's team has been good, up at 10 points this week. The Rangers, 2-3-5 in their last 10, are definitely in tough against the Predators, who have been getting healthier and healthier of late and could be really scary over this next stretch.
Jimmy Howard (Tony) versus Ben Bishop (Clayton)
The Dallas Stars are going through some internal struggles, if you have been watching the drama unfold in the news over the last couple of days, so they'll need their best players to be their best players. Ben Bishop has been tasked to be that guy in net for them tonight and the pressure might be on to get that win. Clayton's team has 11 points this week and could really use his top keeper to get his act together. The Red Wings, on the other hand, don't have the same expectation level, nor have they confirmed their goalie for today. I would assume that it's Jimmy Howard, but I just can't be sure.
Collin Delia (N/A) versus Semyon Varlamov (Wilton)
These last three games are going to be a bit of a crap shoot, especially this early in the day. Collin Delia will likely go for the Blackhawks tonight, coming off a shutout in his last start, while Semyon Varlamov is expected to go tonight, looking to make his first start after the holiday break. I don't think Wilton would complain about a second start on the night.
Darcy Kuemper (N/A) versus Chad Johnson (N/A)
It looks like it could be a moot goalie match-up in Anaheim for one of the late games, as John Gibson was hurt in the Ducks' last game and the team has made a recall, just in case he can't go for sure, but nothing here has been confirmed on either side, so we'll post what we expect, but of course, things can change between now and puck drop.
Jacob Markstrom (Chelsea) versus David Rittich (Ryan)
The early reports out of Calgary suggest that David Rittich is going to be your starting goalie for the Flames, when they play host to the Canucks tonight. The morning skate's alignment gave a solid suggestion of that. Good news for Ryan's team, which is also in the hunt for a Mover & Shaker this week, sitting up with 11 points. No word on the Canucks goalie, but I would think it's safe to assume that Jacob Markstrom will take to the net once again in this divisional game.