Starting goalie: Tristan Jarry
Starting goalie: John Gibson
Starting goalie: Tristan Jarry
Starting goalie: John Gibson
Every week, PHT will look to provide its readers with some fantasy hockey advice. This column will aim to help you navigate through the rough waters of the waiver wire. We’ll tell you which players owned in 50 percent or less of Yahoo leagues are worth adding and we’ll also let you know which players you can safely part ways with.
If you have any specific fantasy hockey questions, feel free to write me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here we go:
• Joe Thornton– C- San Jose Sharks (42 percent)
The Sharks will be pretty busy this week, as they’ll play five games between Monday and Sunday. Thornton went into the Sharks’ bye week on a three-game point drought, but he exploded for three points against the Coyotes on Saturday night. The veteran is on pace to hit the 60-point mark in 2017-18.
• Jonathan Bernier– G- Colorado Avalanche (31 percent)
The Avalanche have been playing some good hockey of late and Bernier has a lot to do with that. He was the NHL’s second star last week, and with Semyon Varlamov out for at least two more weeks, he’ll continue to see a good amount of action. He’s worth at least a short-term add for those looking for a goaltender.
• David Krejci– C- Boston Bruins (22 percent)
The Bruins forward has missed a good chunk of the season because of injuries, but he’s back and healthy now. Krejci has picked up four points in five games since returning from an upper-body injury in late December. As long as he’s healthy, he’ll be worth owning in most standard fantasy leagues.
• Hampus Lindholm– D- Anaheim Ducks (16 percent)
Lindholm has registered four assists in his last four games. He sees large amounts of ice time on the Ducks blue line, so opportunities to produce won’t be an issue for him. Lindholm has produced at a 0.48 points-per-game clip this season, which is beyond reasonable for a defenseman.
• Anthony Beauvillier– C/LW- New York Islanders (5 percent)
Beauvillier spent the bye week in the minors which clearly seemed to work for him, as he came back and had three points against the Rangers over the weekend. The fact that he played on a line with Mathew Barzal and Jordan Eberle makes him an intriguing add in deeper leagues.
• Brent Seabrook– D- Chicago Blackhawks (50 percent)
Seabrook scored in his first game back in the lineup after being a healthy scratch last week, but that doesn’t mean he’ll provide fantasy owners with strong production. If Hampus Lindholm is available in your league, it might be time for you to swap Seabrook for him.
• Zach Parise– LW- Minnesota Wild (50 percent)
Parise finally made his regular season debut earlier this month after missing the first three months of the season with a back injury. The Wild forward has accumulated just one assist in his first seven games. It will take him time to find his legs, but there are other players that could provide strong fantasy value in the meantime.
• Brendan Gallagher– RW- Montreal Canadiens (49 percent)
Gallagher is an incredibly hard worker that had a fine first half of the season on a mediocre Montreal team, but don’t be surprised if he comes back down to earth in the second half. His work rate will always be high, it’s just that his production will likely dip. Gallagher has just three goals in his last 15 games.
The Anaheim Ducks have started to get some of their injured bodies back lately, but they were dealt another significant blow on Tuesday, as they found out Corey Perry would be out ‘week-to-week’ with a lower-body injury.
He’ll be re-evaluated in a week, but he was working out at the Honda Center earlier today, according to beat reporter Eric Stephens.
Perry suffered the injury in the first period of Monday night’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes. Even though he isn’t as productive as he once was, the veteran is still a big part of team. He has six goals and 16 assists in 31 games this season.
Monday’s game marked the return of forwards Ryan Getlzaf and Jakob Silfverberg to Anaheim’s lineup, which probably had the Ducks feeling pretty good about themselves. Clearly, that didn’t last long.
It’s a tough blow for a team that’s already without Ryan Kesler (he hasn’t played at all this season), Nick Ritchie, Hampus Lindholm and Joseph Blandisi. On a positive note, it sounds like Kesler will be on the team’s upcoming six-game road trip that will see them travel to St. Louis, Washington, New Jersey, New York, Brooklyn and Pittsburgh.
The Ducks could certainly use some healthy bodies, as they’re in a fight for a playoff spot right now. They currently trail the Flames by one point (Calgary has a game in hand) for the final Wild Card spot in the West. They’re also two points behind the Sharks (San Jose has two games in hand) for third place in the Pacific Division.
Keep this good stuff up, NHL GMs.
Ears perked up on Thursday, as the Anaheim Ducks landed Adam Henrique (and other stuff) from the New Jersey Devils for Sami Vatanen (plus some nicknacks) in another intriguing trade. One can only hope this means that we’ll see more interesting moves sprinkled throughout 2017-18, rather than having to beg for trimmings during the trade deadline alone.
With that in mind, let’s dive into the fantasy hockey implications of this move. Apologies to Joseph Blandisi for a lack of attention here, but honestly, his fantasy impact will most likely be … well, the first five letters of his last name.
Sami Vatanen – As much as I love how the Devils are redesigning their team, I’m not so sure what to make about Vatanen from a W-L record standpoint. In other words, the “reality” part is tougher.
It seems like I’m not alone in having some mild doubts about this, but for more on the real-world implications of the move, check out Sean Leahy’s analysis of the trade.
From a fantasy perspective, this is a slam-dunk for the Devils and Vatanen’s value, though. It will be intriguing to see how Vatanen’s arrival impacts the value of Will Butcher, who has been averaging three minutes per night on the Devils’ power play. Will New Jersey opt for a three-forward, two-defensemen setup or go with league trends and lean 4F-1D?
Either way, the Devils suddenly have more balance, and continue to nudge themselves up the ranks of the NHL’s most entertaining teams (because their strengths and weaknesses lineup so blissfully). Vatanen’s had some struggles in the past couple seasons, but he’s a two-time 30+ point scorer despite never playing more than 71 games in a single regular season.
I’ll leave the add/drop analysis to PHT’s Joey Alfieri, as far as where Vatanen might fit in your lineup. There’s little doubt in my mind that Vatanen is more valuable today than he was as a member of the Ducks, even though he was given reasonable opportunities to succeed in Anaheim.
At the absolute minimum, the Devils get that much more fun to watch.
Instead, this was a very sensible move where two teams gave up surplus pieces to fit glaring needs.
In the case of Henrique, the Ducks get a sorely needed center – probably their top center for quite some time, as Ryan Kesler and Ryan Getzlaf both deal with serious issues – who’s also cheap at $4M. For a budget-conscious contender, this makes a lot of sense.
So, what kind of player is Henrique? That might be a question many are asking, considering that he’s been part of a Devils team that’s been under the radar for some time.
Henrique brings some impressive mid-level goal-scoring to the table. While he’s been weak in that area this season (just four goals on 49 SOG for an unusually low 8.2 shooting percentage), his career shooting percentage is a lofty 15. He’s hit 30 goals once and also had 25 and 20-goal seasons.
Eventually, you’d expect the returns of Kesler and Getzlaf to push him down the lineup, but it’s worth noting that Henrique can probably move to the wing when that happens.
It’s not as if a fantasy owner wants long-term results if they’re adding Henrique; you’re not really slotting a keeper league spot for him, right? This would be about short-term returns in most instances, and the bigger question is just “How depleted is this Ducks offense?” Along with Kesler and Getzlaf having serious issues, the Ducks also have Ondrej Kase, Jakob Silfverberg, and Rickard Rakell on the shelf. Let’s not forget Patrick Eaves‘ frightening health issues, either.
That opens the door for Henrique opportunities, but it’s worth mentioning that he probably won’t be carried by red-hot wingers. The results could be modest for would-be fantasy owners.
Who gains from Vatanen’s departure?
It will be interesting to see which Ducks defensemen get a boost from Vatanen being traded away, too.
So far in 2017-18, Cam Fowler was the only Anaheim blueliner who averaged more PP time per game than Vatanen. That said, Brandon Montour (2:41 per night) wasn’t far behind Vatanen’s average of 2:48 per game, and Hampus Lindholm got his fair share of reps, too, at 2:16 per evening.
Between power-play time and even-strength minutes – Vatanen averaged 21:06 minutes of total ice time per game, third among Ducks skaters and defensemen – there are some nice opportunities for Lindholm, Montour, and Josh Manson to take bigger roles.
The Ducks are transitioning from such a deep defense that people have to fight for ice time to something a little more stable, what with Vatanen and Shea Theodore out of the mix. Personally, I’m especially intrigued by what this might mean for Lindholm and Manson, two of the Ducks’ most interesting blueliners.
Again, it’s wise to check in on Alfieri’s add/drops post for more immediate advice on Monday, though.
Every now and then, you get that rare opportunity to celebrate two of your favorite things coming together.
Beavis and Butt-Head reuniting for a season. Peanut butter and chocolate teaming up in many glorious candy bar iterations. High on that list: dogs and hockey.
So, kudos to VetDogs.org and the New York Islanders for sharing this treat with us, and credit Charlie with not treating the puck as an actual treat:
Not going to lie, it bums me out a bit that superb dog Charlie didn’t get to “shake hands” with John Tavares and Justin Faulk, but it might have confused the pup, who’s being trained to help a U.S. army veteran.
Charlie seems to be a star at the site, as the front page features “Support Charlie and the Vet Dogs mission,” which is driving a fundraising effort. You can even follow along for … “pupdates.”
There’s a ton of video on Charlie, and it’s pretty much all great. Apparently Charlie was quite the hit on “The Today Show,” and the good news is that all this spotlight isn’t going to his furry head.
Hopefully I’m not speaking out of turn when I upgrade Charlie from “very good dog” to extremely good dog.
Here’s another cool moment from tonight:
More dog fun at PHT: