Monday Pickups – March 13th

Let’s recap on the players I suggested for pickups 2 weeks ago, didn’t have time to post a new article last week so I’ll play this like I had the same pickups for 2 weeks in a row:

  1. Travis Zajac (NJD) – 6 GP – 1 Goal/ 1 Assist/ -2/ 5 SOG
  2. Frank Vatrano – 6 GP – 0 Goals/ 1 Assist / +1/ 9 SOG
  3. Sebastian Aho (CAR) – 7 GP – 3 Goals/ 2 Assists/ +1/ 21 SOG
  4. Nick Schmaltz (CHI) – 4 GP – 0 Goals/ 2 Assists/ EVEN/ 7 SOG
  5. Mathieu Perreault (WPG) – 6 GP – 1 Goal/ 4 Assists/ +2/ 9 SOG

The bye-week is over for this year, with quite a few teams have 4 games this week. Carolina is playing 5 games in 7 nights.

Waiver-Wire Pickups (Percentages owned are via Fantrax.com)

1) Sebastian Aho (Forward – 71%) – Aho has been playing quite well lately for the Canes, and with 5 games in 7 nights he’ll be seeing plenty of action. He’s near the top of owned-percentage but if he’s available in your league, pick him up. He could be the difference late in your fantasy season.

Matchups this week: NY Islanders (x2), Minnesota, Nashville, Philadelphia

2) James Reimer (Goalie – 55%) – Reimer has been the man in Florida for a couple weeks now, with Luongo on the shelf with an injury. Reimer has been known in his career as a streaky goalie, and coming off 3 losses he should be due for an upswing. With Florida still hanging on to playoff hopes, they’ll need big games out of Reimer.

Matchups this week: Toronto, Columbus, NY Rangers, Pittsburgh

3) Antti Raanta (Goalie – 61%) – King Hank was just diagnosed with an injury that will keep him out of the lineup for the next 2-3 weeks. During that time, Raanta will be the man in New York. He’s played very well all season, and has taken on heavy workloads in the past. Snatch him up if he’s out there.

Matchups this week: Tampa Bay, Florida, Minnesota

4) Gustav Nyquist (Forward – 61%) – Since coming back from his suspension (which was FAR too little), he’s been playing better hockey. In those 5 games, he has 6 points. Not outstanding numbers, but he’s been having a terrible year. The Red Wings in general have been having an awful year, but with Vanek traded out at the deadline, Nyquist is seeing increased time. He’s worth a gamble in most leagues. The Wings have an outstanding schedule this week as well.

Matchups this week:  Colorado (x2), Arizona

5) Andrew Ladd (Forward – 49%) – Ladd is having a terrible year, especially after signing the big deal this summer with the Islanders. He’s been a different player lately though, with points in 3 straight games. He’s been playing his best hockey at a time of year when the Islanders need it the most. If they’re going to make the playoffs they’ll need even more out of him.

Matchups this week: Carolina (x2), Winnipeg, Columbus

*Percentages per Fantrax.com*

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Monday Pick-Ups – Feb 20th/2017

Let’s recap on the players I suggested for pickups last week (not a great week, not bad for depth players either):

  1. Jason Pominville (MIN) – 3 GP – 0 Goals/ 2 Assists/ -1/ 7 SOG
  2. Ryan Strome (NYI) – 4 GP – 2 Goals/ 1 Assist / -2 / 7 SOG
  3. Connor Brown (TOR) – 4 GP – 2 Goals/ 1 Assist/ -1/ 11 SOG
  4. Radek Faksa (DAL) – 3 GP – Zero points. Spezza returned from injury, impacting Faksa
  5. Brady Skjei (NYR) – 3 GP – 0 Goals/ 2 Assists/ +1/ 5 SOG/ 3 Hits/ 3 Blks

Let’s see who’s playing/not playing a lot this week:

Teams Playing 4 games:

  • Arizona
  • Calgary
  • Edmonton
  • Florida
  • Nashville
  • New York Rangers

Teams Playing only 2 or less (bye week) games:

  • Buffalo
  • Columbus
  • Dallas
  • Detroit
  • Minnesota
  • New Jersey
  • Philadelphia
  • Pittsburgh
  • San Jose
  • St. Louis
  • Tampa Bay
  • Vancouver
  • Winnipeg

Waiver-Wire Pickups (Percentages owned are via Fantrax.com)

1) Martin Hanzal (Forward – 46%) – Hanzal has been rumored for the past couple of months as a likely candidate to be traded. That could come as early as this week. Surely whatever team he goes to will be a vast improvement for the young centre. Since missing action on February 9th, he’s scored 5 goals in 5 games. Surely that will slow, but he’s still a strong play this week with 4 games on the docket.

Matchups this weekAnaheim, Chicago, Dallas, Buffalo

2)Jimmy Vesey (Forward – 64%). While he’s owned in most leagues, his averages starts have been low lately. Vesey has struggled since coming out of the gate on a tear. However, he’s back on the Rangers top line. Time to claim Vesey if possible.

Matchups this week: Montreal, Toronto, New Jersey, Columbus

3) Michael Stone (Defense – 40%) – Stone was acquired by the Flames on Monday, adding to their depth on D. Not sure yet what his role will be, but if he suits up for 3 of their 4 games this week I’d take a chance on him. He’s got a heavy shot and should slot into one of the Flames power plays.

Matchups this week: Nashville, Tampa Bay, Florida, Carolina

4) Jakob Chychrun (Defense – 42%) – another beneficiary of the Stone trade. The rookie should see increase ice time with Stone gone. Perfect time for the rook to step up his game with 4 matchups this week.

Matchups this week: Anaheim, Chicago, Dallas, Buffalo

5)  Travis Zajac (Forward – 47%) – Zajac has been dependable his whole career. He’s been flying low this season, but is once again on the top line. With a winger like Taylor Hall next to him, and playing a very banged up Ottawa team this week, he could be in for a big week.

Matchups this week: Ottawa, NY Rangers

Monday Pick-Ups – Feb 13th/2017

I’ve been playing fantasy hockey for years, and often finish in the top couple spots after the regular season ends. We won’t talk about my playoff performance, which often derails due to injuries/players resting. I tend to have a great draft each year, but where I find I really set myself above others is on the waiver wire. Starting today, each Monday I’ll outline 5 players which I have on my radar for the upcoming week. Here’s week 1:

Teams Playing 4 games:

  • Arizona
  • Buffalo
  • Colorado
  • Columbus
  • New Jersey
  • New York Islanders
  • Ottawa
  • Pittsburgh
  • Toronto
  • Vancouver

Teams Playing only 2 or less (bye week) games:

  • Carolina
  • Chicago
  • Nashville
  • Tampa Bay
  • Washington
  • Boston (1 game)
  • Montreal (1 game)

Waiver-Wire Pickups (Percentages owned are via Fantrax.com)

1) Jason Pominville (Forward – 41%) – Pominville has been on fire in his last 20 games really. If he’s still available, which he is in over half of leagues, he is a MUST have. In 20 games since December 31st, Pominville has 5 goals and 16 assists. He has been known to be streaky throughout his career, and over his past 5 games he has 9 points. The time is now if oyu want to pick him up. Minnesota is in for a tough week, with 3 very strong teams on the schedule, but Pominville is still a rare find on the waiver wire.

Matchups this week: Anaheim, Dallas, Nashville

2) Ryan Strome (Forward – 45%) – Strome has failed to live up to expectations he set for himself after a great rookie campaign. Last year even had a long trip to the AHL for the forward. In his last 10 games, Strome has put up 3 goals, 5 assists. Could he have found his touch? It’s difficult to say, but new coach Doug Weight seems to be trusting Strome more as his ice-time has been increasing.

Matchups this week: Toronto, NY Rangers, New Jersey x2

3) Connor Brown (Forward – 38%) – He rides shotgun on a line with Auston Matthews, and has been a streaky goal scorer all season long. His line has been quiet since coming out of the All-Star break, however expect them to heat up this week as Matthews and Brown look to get back on track with 4 games on the schedule.

Matchups this week: NY Islanders, Columbus, Ottawa, Carolina

4) Radek Faksa (Forward – 34%) – Faksa has taken advantage of an injury to Jason Spezza and used his increased ice-time as best as he could have hoped. Since drawing back into the lineup on January 31st, Faksa has chipped in with 2 goals and 3 assists. He’s averaged 17 minutes a night in that timeframe, and is currently lining up with Tyler Seguin. That right there is enough for a chance on Faksa for a week or two.

Matchups this week: Winnipeg, Dallas, Tampa Bay

5) Brady Skej (Defense – 56%) – The rookie blueliner for the Rangers has been playing well with increased ice-time over the last handful of games. He’s managed to put up 1 goal and 7 assists in his last 10 games, which is amongst the elites in that timeframe. If you’re looking for help on the blue-line, he’s definitely your guy.

Matchups this week: Columbus, NY Islanders, Washington