About last night (Hejduk, Stastny, Smyth, Lalime, Tellqvist, Ryan Miller)

Right wing Milan Hejduk (one goal, one assist, +2 last night) will remain "an Avalanche" for the rest of the season

Right wing Milan Hejduk (one goal, one assist, +2 last night) will remain "an Avalanche" for the rest of the season.

In the five games since Colorado Avalanche center Paul Stastny has returned to the lineup, here are the stats for Colorado’s first line (Stastny, left wing Ryan Smyth, and right wing Milan Hejduk):

Stastny: no goals, three assists, 0

Smyth: three goals, two assists, -1

Hejduk: three goals, three assists, -1

All three registered +2 last night in Colorado’s 3-2 home loss to the Detroit Red Wings. Hejduk had one goal and one assist while Smyth and Stastny each had one assist, coming on Hejduk’s third-period goal.

Now that the trade deadline has passed and Smyth and Hejduk have stayed put in Colorado, I expect their productivity to jump, especially once Stastny gets rolling. There’s a chance you can grab one of these front-liners in your league, especially in Yahoo! formats:

Smyth (77 percent owned in Yahoo!, 96.7 percent in ESPN)

Stastny (83 percent Yahoo!, 90.8 ESPN)

Hejduk (83 percent Yahoo!, 95.5 ESPN)

***

Lost in the shuffle of trade-deadline stories was last night’s impressive 5-1 home win for the Buffalo Sabres vs. the Montreal Canadiens. Sabres goalie Patrick Lalime stopped 38 of 39 shots. He has played well for three consecutive games, giving up only four goals in those three contests.

What this means for fantasy purposes: Lalime, only six percent owned in ESPN and 16 percent in Yahoo!, is a goalie you should pick up immediately. Fear not that Buffalo acquired former Phoenix Coyotes goalie Mikael Tellqvist at the deadline. Tellqvist, to put it in baseball terms, is a can of corn (career 3.04 GAA and .897 save percentage). Lalime will be the starting goalie until megastar netminder Ryan Miller returns in about two weeks.

photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

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