If you haven't tried our new daily Hockey Throwdown fantasy game, check it out. The link in the tile will take you to the game page where you can set up a head-to-head challenge with a friend, an enemy, the cable guy, the vicar, me ... basically anyone. Pick three players on three different NHL teams who you think will surpass their projected totals in such categories as wins, saves and goals-against average for goalies; and goals, assists, plus-minus, PIM and shots on goal for forwards and defensemen. Your team earns points based on live game stats. Highest score wins. You can play for free or wager anywhere from $1 to $500.
Each weekday, I'll be offering up my three picks for that night's action. To help you prepare, here are the players that I think are primed to have a big night:
Sid may be the NHL's ultimate offensive weapon, but that doesn't mean he's a great play in this game. His projections are always set sky high, meaning he has to have a terrific game to exceed them. Most nights you'll want to look for a safer play but when the opposition is the Maple Leafs, you've got to make him your choice at forward. Crosby flat out owns Toronto. He's burned them for 21 goals and 25 assists in 29 career games. Topping his key projections (0.4 G, 0.8 A, 0.3 +/-, 3.7 SOG, 0.4 PPP) should be a breeze.
Green has put points in the board in five of his last seven games, so topping his point projections (0.1 G, 0.3 A) looks like a safe play. Where he could really pop, though, is in the shots category. He's landed two or more in five of his past six games, averaging 2.8 per. Bettering 1.9 should be a breeze, especially against a New Jersey team that struggles with shot suppression (29.9 per game).
Miller's last two performances haven't matched his excellent early season play. A sign that he's regressing to the mean or just a bump in the road? I'm betting on the latter, especially with this matchup against the offensively-challenged Coyotes. Prior to this rough patch Miller had allowed two goals or fewer in seven straight, making the 2.3 goals-against a good play. And with Arizona's shots-for and Vancouver's shots-against both hovering around 30, I like his chances to top 25.7 saves.