On a yearly basis, real-time NHL trades help to sculpt the fantasy hockey landscape. This year is no different – especially looking back to last week where we saw a flurry of deals headlined by an absolute blockbuster between Nashville and Columbus.
In terms of short-term fantasy relevancy, Ryan Johansen going to Music City means way more than Seth Jones going to Columbus. Johansen has a goal and an assist through his first two games with the Predators.
Undoubtedly, fantasy owners are giddy beyond belief to see the 23-year-old playing on a line that includes sniper James Neal and the steady Filip Forsberg. It’s too early to tell but on talent alone – there’s certainly reason for excitement and elation.
Meanwhile, Jones has already fit in nicely on Columbus’ top “D” pairing with fellow youngster Ryan Murray. Initially, it goes without saying that the point production won’t be there. Jones was held pointless while accumulating a minus-2 rating in a pair of losses to the Carolina Hurricanes this past weekend. As Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen continues to retool his struggling squad, Jones will prove to be a fantasy hockey stud for years to come. It just may not happen overnight so patience is the key – great pickup for keeper leagues.
HAVE AN EYE
Jonathan Drouin – Tampa Bay Lightning – LW
Depending on the size of your league, stashing Jonathan Drouin on your bench would be extremely intelligent. That is, of course, if he’s available on the waiver wire. Last week, through his agent the 20-year-old publically requested a trade from Tampa and it sounds like something could possibly get done in the next couple of weeks. Unsurprisingly, the list of suitors for his services is long. He’s immensely talented and a change of scenery may be just what Drouin needs to get his NHL career back on track.
Tyson Barrie – Colorado Avalanche – D
After a slow start to the season, the 24-year-old defenseman has been red-hot lately. I guess it comes as no surprise that Colorado has surged up the Western Conference standings. With fellow rearguard Erik Johnson currently out of the lineup due to injury, Barrie has elevated his play. He’s coming off a six-point week which included a monster four-point effort in a victory over Los Angeles on January 4th. Barrie is heating up and is showing no signs of reverting back to his early season ways.
TEST THE MARKET
Daniel Sedin – Vancouver Canucks – LW
I preface this by saying that it’s been a tremendous offensive season for Daniel Sedin – one of his best in his NHL career to date. That being said, the time is NOW to gage the trade market for him and cash on the HIGH VALUE. He’s been a top-20 fantasy rankings mainstay but his recent struggles suggests he’s coming back to reality. You might as well SELL HIGH (if you can) and cut your losses.
John Klingberg – Dallas Stars – D
Some may disagree with this and that’s fine but I think the time is now to entertain the thoughts of selling HIGH on John Klingberg. Surprisingly, the Stars have struggled to begin 2016 (1-3-1 in 2016). Today actually marks the 14-month anniversary of John Klingberg’s NHL debut (November 11th, 2014). For me – the Swede has now entered his sophomore season and perhaps, we’ll see a bit of a slump. Then again, maybe my theory will be completely wrong. After all, everything Klingberg has done to this point has been a big-time surprise so why stop now?
Louis Domingue – Arizona Coyotes – G
There’s no telling where the Arizona Coyotes would currently be without the stellar goaltending of Louis Domingue. The 23-year-old 2010 3rd round pick has been downright exceptional filling in for the injured Mike Smith. In ten appearances, he’s posted a 2.06 GAA, .936 SVP% and an impressive 6-2-1 record along the way. The numbers speak for themselves.
Zach Parise – Minnesota Wild – LW
Being on a defensive minded team may be the biggest reason why Zach Parise doesn’t get the respect I think he deserves. The 31-year-old is coming off a strong offensive week where he poured in five goals which included hat-trick performance in a 4-2 win over Columbus on January 5th.
Tobias Rieder – Arizona Coyotes – RW
Alexander Wennberg – Columbus Blue Jackets – C
Carl Soderberg – Colorado Avalanche – C, LW
Sean Couturier – Philadelphia Flyers – C
Jordan Staal – Carolina Hurricanes – C, LW
Special Mention: Alex Ovechkin is a freak of nature. That is all.
Have a great week! As always, for inquiries, thoughts etc.. find me on twitter: @thegoldenmuzzy