The Goods on Fantasy Hockey
by Ian Gooding on 04/08/13 at 11:50 PM ET
Now that the trade deadline has passed, the new acquisitions should be settled in with their new teams. This is an opportunity to check in with these players to determine how their new teams seem to be using them and what their fantasy prospects are going forward.
Ben Bishop, G, TB
How would you like to earn a shutout in your first game with your new team? Bishop did that in his first game with the Bolts on Thursday against Carolina, although he wasn’t so lucky in his next two games, allowing three goals. Bishop, who sported a very respectable 2.45 GAA and .922 SV% in Ottawa this season, will attempt to stop the bleeding of a Bolts’ team that has allowed nearly three goals per game. He should start nearly every game down the stretch while Anders Lindback is still on IR, even though the Bolts look draft-lottery bound instead of playoff-bound.
Cory Conacher, LW, OTT
The Sens-Lightning one-for-one swap could be one of those deals that works out well for both teams, as the Sens receive some top-6 scoring help for their third-string goalie. In fact, Conacher has more points (25) than anyone on the injury-ravaged Senators’ lineup. Conacher scored his first Senators’ goal on Sunday against Florida; unfortunately, the Sens’ only goal in a 2-1 loss. His icetime in Ottawa should improve from the 14 minutes per game that he made the most of in Tampa, and he should help improve the fantasy stock of linemates Jakob Silfverberg and Mika Zibanejad.
Marian Gaborik, RW, CBJ
Gaborik’s trade was probably the most surprising of trade deadline day (I mean, who would have mistaken the Blue Jackets for buyers? Didn’t the Rangers just acquire Rick Nash from the Blue Jackets?) However, the trade seemed to have been brought on because he couldn’t coexist with John Tortorella. So on the surface, it would seem as though the lack of viable scoring options in Columbus would deflate Gaborik’s fantasy value. But Gaborik only scored 19 points in 35 games as a Ranger, but has 3 points in 3 games already in Columbus. Gaborik’s presence could have a positive impact on the likes of Matt Calvert and ex-Ranger teammates Brandon Dubinsky and Artem Anisimov.
Derick Brassard, C, NYR
Brassard was another player who made a splash in his first game with his new team, scoring a goal and adding three assists against Pittsburgh on Wednesday. His point totals alone in Columbus over the last few seasons suggested a borderline fantasy option, although you were probably avoiding him because of the plus/minus. The success may be short-lived, however, as Brassard has only averaged 14 minutes per game with the Rangers behind Derek Stepan and Brad Richards on the depth chart at center.
Jason Pominville, RW, MIN
Pominville’s acquisition came at the right time for Minnesota, who will lose Dany Heatley short-term with a shoulder injury. That should be fine, as Pominville scored a goal and added an assist in his second game with the Wild on Sunday. Pominville could see top-line minutes alongside Zach Parise and Mikko Koivu while playing for a team that has a lot more to play for than the Sabres, so his owners shouldn’t be too upset about his trade. Pominville is having as good a season as any of the players that were traded at the deadline (27 points in 39 games).
Martin Erat, RW, WAS
A couple hours after the deadline, we waited and waited for the Capitals to announce that they had acquired Erat, who reportedly asked for a trade out of Nashville. Perhaps Filip Forsberg is a steep price to pay for Erat, who has been held without a point in his two games as a Capital. Still, his acquisition is more positive momentum for the Capitals, who have ascended from the ashes into first place in the Southeast Division. Erat is currently day-to-day and missed Sunday’s game against Tampa Bay, so keep an eye on his status before adding him.
Jussi Jokinen, LW, PIT
Jokinen’s acquisition is noteworthy mainly because the Penguins are without one Sidney Crosby right now. Still, Jokinen scored a goal in his only game as a Penguin. He will be a good short-term fill-in option as long as Crosby is out. Assuming Crosby is back for the playoffs, however, Jokinen will probably resume third-line duties and may only be an option in those playoff pools in which one random player from each team is picked to score the overtime goal.
Steve Mason, G, PHI
Not only did the Flyers acquire Mason, but they also signed him to a one-year contract extension. Does this spell the end for Ilya Bryzgalov as a Flyer? We won’t know for sure until the offseason, but the Flyers wouldn’t be wise to trust their starting goalie duties to Mason. A change of scenery might have been what the doctor ordered for the former Blue Jacket and Calder Trophy winner, but at the very least he is worth a spot start or two for what’s remaining of the regular season. Besides, Bryz is due for a rest, having started 22 consecutive games and counting.
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About The Goods on Fantasy Hockey
My name is Ian Gooding, and this is The Goods on Fantasy Hockey. Given my ability to understand numbers, write sentences, and follow hockey, it’s not a surprise to those who know me that I became a fantasy hockey writer. I started writing about fantasy hockey in 2006 for fantasyhockey.com and became the site’s content editor in 2007. Looking to expand my audience, I joined Kukla’s Korner in the summer of 2011 to create the site’s first fantasy hockey blog.
A few times each week, I’ll provide an article called “Pick Six” where I will write about six players that should either be in your fantasy team’s starting lineup or bench for the upcoming game. As well, I’ll provide the fantasy takes on important hockey developments. You can also email me your questions or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow me on Twitter.