Following the crazy trade frenzy of the last couple of days, I’ll go through the Western Conference teams and analyse some of the fallout that has occurred because of the trades. Obviously, some of the opinions are going to differ from Angus’ or Dobber’s, but that’s the reason why you come visit this site in the first place isn’t it?
Adds: Jarkko Ruutu, Francois Beauchemin, and Maxim Lapierre
Losses: Paul Mara, Aaron Voros, Joffrey Lupul, Brett Festerling and Jake Gardiner
Fantasy Outcome: The biggest impact for the Ducks is probably the addition of Beauchemin. He’s spent most of his time during the last five contests mentoring youngster Cam Fowler (53.1). Too bad Fowler’s plus/minus is still pretty brutal (minus seven during that span), but it should get better having a veteran defensive presence to cover for some of his rookie mistakes, so look for a small improvement during the final stretch of the season. Ruutu was pretty much inserted into a third-line agititating/checking role alongside Todd Marchant and Brandon McMillian, so there isn’t a lot of fantasy impact there unless you are after HITs. Lapiere went from averaging 11:48 in Montreal to 11:02 in Anaheim, so not much fantasy value there.
Adds: Tom Kostopoulous and Anton Babchuk
Losses: Ian White and Brett Sutter
Fantasy Outcome: The Flames have been relatively quiet so far, as there’s nothing much that they need to change at least for the short term. They’re 13-2-3 in their last 18 contests, and have really have quietened any of the “rebuilding” talk that was rampant earlier this campaign. Babchuk is still getting “second unit” PP ice-time, but if he can somehow manage to unseat Jay Bouwmeester from the top unit, his fantasy value could skyrocket. Kostopoulous has pretty much been relegated to fourth line duties alongside Mikael Backlund and Niklas Hagman, so not much fantasy impact there.
Adds: Michael Frolik and Alexander Salak
Losses: Jack Skille, Hugh Jessiman, and David Pacan
Fantasy Outcome: The Hawks have also been relatively quiet during the entire trade buzz that has happened during the last couple of days. Frolik has higher offensive upside than Skille, but so far, he’s had the reigns clamped on him since the acquisition. He’s currently toiling on the third line alongside Jake Dowell and Troy Brouwer, while averaging just 13:21 per contest and most importantly essentially zero PP ice-time. Definitely not the big impact trade that everyone was buzzing about a couple of weeks ago. The potential is certainly there if the Hawks ever decide to utilize him on the second unit PP alongside Dave Bolland and Marian Hossa, but unless he gets that opportunity, his fantasy value is drastically limited.
Adds: Matt Hunwick, Tomas Fleischmann, Brian Elliott, Erik Johnson, Jay McClement, and Ryan O’Byrne
Losses: Colby Cohen, Scott Hannan, Craig Anderson, Chris Stewart, and Kevin Shattenkirk
Fantasy Outcome: The biggest shocker of all of the trades so far has to be the deal between the Blues and the Avs. With that trade, it pretty much sent a clear message that Colorado is ready to t--- this season and look towards the future. With how things resulted from the Anderson debacle (sent home for personal reasons, then responding with a 43-save SO), it’s probably not hard to draw a conclusion that he wasn’t at all happy in Colorado this season which is probably the main reason for his poor play. Elliott gets a late season audition to hopefully cement a spot as a number one goalie heading into next season. I can still remember flashes of brilliance from last campaign, where he singlehandedly carried the Sens on his back for pretty long stretches, so he certainly has the potential to do the same for the Avs this season. EJ seems to have been thrown a brand new lifeline, as he picked up a whopping 26:44 of ice-time (4:37 of which was on the PP) during his first contest in an Avs uniform. At 74 percent Yahoo! owned, he should still be available in a few leagues out there. McClement has pretty much settled into a third-line checking center role, which is a similar role he had with the Blues, so his fantasy value is also limited moving forward.
Nothing major to note. But I am really surprised to see that they passed on Sheldon Souray considering how desperate of a need they have for a puck moving d-man. Maybe bad mouthing your own GM to the media is pretty much a career kiss-of-death.
Adds: Alex Goligoski, Mikhail Stefanovich, and Jamie Langenbrunner
Losses: James Neal, Matt Niskanen, and Fabian Brunnstrom
Fantasy Outcome: The Stars made their push early with the acquisition of Langenbrunner in January. So far he’s responded with eight points in 17 contests, while spending the most of his time alongside Brendan Morrow and Mike Ribeiro. The soon-to-be 36-year old is probably running on his last tank of gas, so don’t expect any miracles from him during the home run. I agree with a few of the Dobberities, who posted, that Monday’s trade should dramatically benefit Jamie Benn. With Neal out of the picture, I think this clearly allows Benn to at least get a brief audition for a top-six spot. If Neal doesn’t pan out Steve Ott could also get a major look (he picked up 202 points in 131 contests during his last two years of juniors with the Spitfires), as he does have more offensive upside than he’s shown in the first seven years of his NHL career. A player that could be majorly hurt in the deal is Stephane Robidas. Prior to the trade, he essentially maintained top-dog status on the Stars top PP unit, as they didn’t really have a true PP QB blue liner. With Goligoski now in the mix, they have two great playmakers on the blue line that could really get the puck moving with the man advantage. Look for Robidas to drop down to the second unit, and Goli to climb the depth charts in big D.
Nothing major to note and they don’t really have any major holes to fill either. Ales Hemsky might look awfully good in a Red Wings jersey, and does fit their style of play, if they can make the right pitch to the Oilers.
Nothing major to note but there are plenty of Ales Hemsky and Dustin Penner rumors floating around on the net. Andrew Cogliano could also garner some attention as well, but won’t net a large return.
Adds: Marco Sturm
Fantasy Outcome: Sturm hasn’t exactly panned out as planned for the Kings, as he’s still dealing with a bit of tenderness in the knee. He’s expected to suit up Thursday against Anaheim so that’s definitely a positive. When he was healthy he was spending the bulk of his ice-time alongside Anze Kopitar and Dustin Brown. The duo has since been split up, so it’ll be interesting to see what the line combos coach Terry Murray decides to utilize when Sturm returns on Thursday night.
Nothing major to note. With the recent injury to their captain, Mikko Koivu, and also having the team right in the middle of a playoff race, the Wild might be looking to pick up some help to fill the void left by Koivu. The problem is that there aren’t very many sellers at this point, and the ones that are potentially available probably won’t come at a cheap cost.
Adds: Mike Fisher
Fantasy Outcome: If there is such as thing as a perfect union between player playing style and team defensive scheme then the pickup of Fisher by the Preds has got to be pretty darn close. He went from a second/third line player in Ottawa to pretty much a top-line (if you can classify a top-line) center in Nashville. He’s spending a bulk of his ice-time alongside talented players like Martin Erat and Sergei Kostitsyn. Fisher won’t put up mind-boggling numbers, but he should do well enough to be fantasy worthy moving forward.
Adds: Michal Rozsival
Losses: Al Montoya and Wojtek Wolski
Fantasy Outcome: If you’ve been following my columns/forum posts the last couple of weeks, you probably would have noticed my opinion in the difference of play now that the Coyotes have Rozsival in the line up compared to the pre-Rozsival trade. In this recent stretch, the Coyotes are allowing just 28.7 SOG to the opposition, at an average distance of 36.29 feet per shot, and blocking 12.5 SOG per contest. Prior to the trade the Coyotes were allowing 33.4 SOG to the opposition, at an average distance of 34.27 feet, and blocking 12.1 SOG per contest. Rozsival hasn’t exactly made himself fantasy worthy, but it has certainly helped Ilya Bryzgalov’s game as he sports a 7-2 record, a 2.24 GAA along with a dazzling .926 save percentage in the month of February.
Adds: Ian White and Ben Eager
Losses: Derek Joslin
Fantasy Outcome: A few mini trades in San Jose, but nothing of huge fantasy significance. They essentially gave up pretty little and picked up a solid puck moving d-man in White and tough guy Eager for the playoff push. White is spending a lot of his even strength time alongside Nic Wallin, but he’s still seeing a bit (1:56) of time on the PP alongside Jason Demers and Dan Boyle. The Sharks have a pretty potent offense (now that Devin Setoguchi has it going again), so White could pick up some steam in the fantasy front in the duration of this fantasy season. At just 11 percent Yahoo! owned, he could be a great bargain bin pick up for the stretch run.
Adds: Chris Stewart, Kevin Shattenkirk, and Brock Beukeboom
Losses: Eric Brewer, Erik Johnson, and Jay McClement
Fantasy Outcome: As discussed earlier, the Blues/Avs trade was the one that was the major shocker of the plethora of trades last week. From the Blues perspective, they picked up a few major pieces to help them win now. Stewart is a hulking sniper that reminds me very much of a younger Jarome Iginla. The Avs gave up too early on him in my honest opinion and might have it come back to haunt them in the future. Stewart is seeing a lot of time alongside Andy McDonald and David Backes, which should equal a pretty decent fantasy production yield for the final 24 contests. Shattenkirk is also a great young D that the Avs have developed in their system ever since the 2007 NHL entry draft, but should find a home alongside Alex Pietrangelo on the blue line of the top PP unit. The biggest fantasy value gainer will be AP as he averaged 23:18 and 2:59 per contest since the trade. At 40 percent Yahoo! owned he’s probably the best WW pickup at the moment.
Nothing major to note. The Nucks don’t have any season-ending injuries or the cap space to make a big bold move at the deadline, so expect them to remain relatively status quo from here on out.