There are just two more weeks remaining in the regular season, so some fantasy hockey leagues are having their semifinals or championship games starting this week. It is an exciting time of the season, and if you are still alive, congratulations on making it this far. Hopefully you make all the right moves and hoist your league's championship trophy. We're here to help, and if you have any questions, feel free to e-mail or shoot a note on Twitter.
The Bruins play all four of their games at home in the upcoming week, a schedule which sets up nicely for goaltender Tuukka Rask and his fantasy owners. C Patrice Bergeron (concussion) is making progress and traveled with the team for their most recent road game to Carolina, but he is still too risky to activate at this critical juncture.
Must start: Zdeno Chara, Jaromir Jagr, David Krejci, Milan Lucic, Brad Marchand, Tuukka Rask
The pickings are pretty slim in Calgary as far as fantasy options are concerned, although with his recent assist binge, right wing Lee Stempniak has pulled into a three-way tie with center Mike Cammalleri and left wing Alex Tanguay. He is worth a look in deeper leagues if available off the waiver wire.
Must start: Mike Cammalleri, Lee Stempniak, Alex Tanguay, Dennis Wideman (hits/blocked shots leagues)
At one point it appeared the Hurricanes would be a playoff team, and a very dangerous one. Then goaltender Cam Ward (knee) went down with a serious knee injury, and this team curled up in the fetal position, especially at home. The good news is that the Canes hit the road for three of four next week, but all four games are potential losses.
Must start: Alexander Semin, Eric Staal, Jordan Staal, Jiri Tlusty
Columbus Blue Jackets
At one point this season, there wasn't one Blue Jackets player worth starting in leagues of 12 or fewer teams. Now, the cupboard is anything but bare, and this team still has a legitimate shot at the playoffs. In fact, the Jackets were buyers at the trade deadline for once, and they are a dangerous team at home.
Must start: Sergei Bobrovsky, Marian Gaborik, Mark Letestu, Vinny Prospal, James Wisniewski (hits/blocked shots leagues)
Goaltender Kari Lehtonen (groin) is a question mark heading into the upcoming week due to a sore groin, so it is a good idea to look elsewhere. Defenseman Alex Goligoski has picked up his scoring with two goals and seven assists with a plus-7 rating over his past 11 games, making him a nice addition at an important time.
Must start: Jamie Benn, Loui Eriksson, Alex Goligoski, Ray Whitney
The Panthers do not have a ton of fantasy options, but rookie Jonathan Huberdeau continues to be a shining light in an otherwise trying season for a young team. Right wing Tomas Kopecky has three goals with an assist over his past four games, making him a valuable short-term pick-up.
Must start: Jonathan Huberdeau, Tomas Kopecky, Shawn Matthias
Center Mikko Koivu continues to hum along with nine goals and 33 points with a plus-6 rating through 40 games. He remains a solid low-end No. 1 center. Right wing Jason Pominville has managed just one goal with two points and a minus-2 rating through four games. Despite the slow start with his new team, he remains a must-start.
Must start: Niklas Backstrom, Cal Clutterbuck (hits/blocked shots leagues), Matt Cullen, Mikko Koivu, Zach Parise, Jason Pominville, Devin Setoguchi, Ryan Suter
Right wing Rene Bourque (concussion) and left wing Max Pacioretty (lower body) were dealing with injuries last week, but both appear to be fine going forward. Start them as you normally would. Defenseman Francis Bouillon might be a sneaky play, as he has been moved up to top-four defenseman status.
Must start: Alex Galchenyuk, Brian Gionta, Andrei Markov, Max Pacioretty, Tomas Plekanec, Carey Price, P.K. Subban