Justin Rosser March 8, 2021
This articles stats are based off of league settings including G, A, +/-, PPP, SHP, GWG, SOG, HIT, BLK and the standard goalie stats of W, GAA, SV% and SHO.
As all fantasy managers want to make their push for the playoffs, whether it is for the first place BYE or just making the cut, everyone is looking to improve and build the strongest playoff team possible. Hopefully I can guide you to making a savvy move or two and pay nickels on the dime at the same time (no, I did not try to…rhyme). So pull up those bartering pants, sanitize those hands, put on your mask and let’s go!
Jack Eichel (C) BUF:
UPDATE: Buyer beware, he has a minor injury (upper body) and will be out a minimum 1 week. (Might even be cheaper now).
J. Eichel is one of the leagues top end offensive talents; he is in a goal scoring rut with only 2 on the year. He is 99% rostered and ranked 169th, so the current owner might be a bit frustrated after giving up elite draft capital for him. The Buffalo Sabres have been struggling mightily this year, especially after their COVID-19 postponements, they just can’t find their groove. Sporting a 6-14-3 record, it seems they have hit rock bottom and we all know once you’re at the bottom, there is only one way to go, UP!
Eichel’s struggles are not just his own, newly acquired Taylor Hall (another buy low option) pairs with Eichel on his left wing and he has been struggling as they go hand in hand, and a mixture of Olofsson/Reinhart/Cozens man the right wing. That’s a lot of talent to have such a low offensive output up to this point, but Eichel is starting to get out of the slump. With 4 assists in his last 4 games, brings him up to 16 on the year, the goals are coming, trust me.
Remember: Last year, Eichel had 36 goals and 42 assists with a +5 rating and 27 PPP.
Artemi Panarin (LW) NYR:
I’m a BIG Panarin (AKA BREAD) fan, he is hands down, bar none, the best player on the Rangers roster. Currently sitting ranked 301 and 96% rostered, this is a long term play.
In case you missed it, stated by his old coach in the KHL from Russia, came out saying that Panarin assaulted a young woman more than 10 years ago in a bar. A lot of speculation, but from what I have gathered, it seems like false claims and more of an attempt to tarnish his name as he spoke out publicly against Russian President Vladimir Putin. So Panarin has missed the last 8 games in his leave of absence dealing with the situation.
As of right now there is no timetable for his return and its scaring fantasy owners as you can see with his ownership % dropping from 100% to 96%. This is the time to jump on an opportunity. If your league has an IR+ spot, this is a great stash, even if it doesn’t I would still take a gamble on a guy like Bread.
Before the season started I had Bread ranked in my top 5 overall, he is a superstar. So approach the current owner and put a feeler out there and see how they feel about the situation. If they are not happy with the 8 games missed, offer to help them and take him of their hands and if they agree, this will be the “BREAD” AND BUTTER move of your season.
Remember: Last year, he had compiled 32 goals and 63 assists with a monster +36 on the year.
John Klingberg (D) DAL:
John Klingberg is a solid offensive defenseman, sitting as the top pairing D and shooting from the point on the top PP for the Stars, he is a great trade target. Ranked 193 and only 88% owned, this is the guy you should want to get onto your roster.
Last year Klingberg was decent performer, but now he is on line 1 and gets all the opportunity. He is on pace to have a solid year, with 3 goals and 12 assists, just shy of half his total production from last year (3 goals and 26 assists in 2020).
My favorite part of Klingberg, is he is quietly having a fantastic season, but with so little games played. Dallas has only played 20 games on the season (Klingberg has played in 19), most team’s average from 24-26 games played. The extra games are huge and they will continuously have weekly condensed schedules for Dallas.
Cam Atkinson (RW) CLS:
Let’s start this off with saying, I don’t mind Cam Atkinson at all and I think he has a knack for making some great plays. That being said, the 31 year old winger is playing above his expectations and now would be a great time to sell.
Through 26 games, Atkinson has 10 goals and 9 assists with a -4 plus/minus. Cam is currently ranked 17 and only 71% owned, I would use that 17 to your advantage when selling. The biggest boost to his ranking is actually his 4 shorthanded points and 2 game winning goals, which is pretty unpredictable and not a sustainable stat.
Columbus has played 26 games, which is on the higher end of games played, so you will get 1 less game from him per week on average to play compared to someone like John Klingberg (see above). I would go knocking while his rank is so good, a lot of GM’s don’t look much past the “rank” and you could get a kings ransom.
Jean-Gabriel Pageau (C) NYI:
Pageau always makes me scratch my head, not because he isn’t talented, just because he always does so much with so little. At 28 years old and 5’ 10” 180 lbs, he has really played well this year.
Ranked 13th and only 54% owned overall with 9 goals and 7 assists, just like Atkinson, has been juiced up because of his 2 SHP and 3 game winning goals. He holds value as a hitter, but my problem is I feel these numbers are inflated a bit.
He plays on the 3rd line as center and on the second power play unit. The fact that a third liner is ranked 13th has to make you wonder if those numbers can continue. He has defied all odds, which makes him even more desirable to other owners. Just point out his consistent hits and solid points on the year and use that rank to your advantage in selling him. I would not take low ball offers here, as he does have a bunch of value, even if it regresses in the latter half of the season.
Put him on the leagues trade block and post it in the chat and see who comes knocking.
Jordan Staal (C) CAR:
At 32 years old, Staal has been playing the best hockey I have seen from him in a long time. What a great story, but stories don’t win titles. This was a great waiver wire add, now cash out.
Ranked 46th overall and 53% owned, Staal has had a fantastic season so far, with 8 goals and 12 assists. Playing on PP1 line has contributed to 9 points out of the total 20. His PP might get bumped down when Tuevo Teravainen returns to the lineup, so make your move.
I don’t know how much return you can get, but it’s worth exploring, especially if you target higher ceiling players maybe struggling that a GM wants to get rid of off their team. Staal plays on their 3rd line normally, which is what makes me hesitant, he has been getting good numbers, so there are a lot of positives to take away on a sell job. He has started to cool down (minus the two games against DET and @NSH), so don’t “staal” and make some offers to people in a hurry!
Justin Rosser March 8, 2021