Hey guys! Sven again, back with a weekly segment identifying players to buy, sell, and hold! I will simply be looking at what these particular players have done performance-wise so far this season, and what I anticipate. Let me know if you guys like this type of content!
STATS ARE AS OF THE MORNING OF THURSDAY, OCTOBER 18
Kasperi Kapanen – 7GP 4-4-8. As most of my friend group are Leafs fans, this guy has been no secret and was actually immediately picked up in my pool. With a promotion to the first line and being told to “play like Hyman”, he looks to be gelling well with his new line mates. If you are based anywhere in Canada this guy is likely off the board already, but his #1RW spot on a scary offence is definitely worth grabbing if you can.
Conor Sheary – 6GP 3-1-4. Sheary has recently caught my attention with 3PPP and a promotion onto Eichel’s line, taking the spot of Jeff Skinner. We have seen what Sheary has been capable of playing on a line with Crosby (53 in 61GP 2016-17), so maybe Eichel will have the same effect on the 26-year-old?
Elias Lindholm – 6GP 4-2-6. Another guy to crack a top line on a top-heavy team, Lindholm looks great skating with Gaudreau and Monahan. I scooped him up in the later rounds of the RCL league, but he should still be available in most leagues.
Chris Tierney – 6GP 2-6-8. When Tierney was acquired by the Sens in the Karlsson deal, the door opened for him to jump into a #2C role with some young wingers and he has looked great in this spot so far. I’m not sure how sustainable Ottawa’s offensive production will be (I will talk about this a little more with the next guy), but ride these guys while they’re hot!
Maxime Lajoie – 6GP 4-3-7. This kid has provided little to no evidence of offensive dominance at any point in his career previously, but boy has he been a nice surprise for the Sens so far this season. I anticipate a drop-off in the near future, so this is definitely a guy that can be picked up and likely sold high for a more consistent defenceman.
Kevin Labanc – 6GP 1-4-5. Though all four of his assists came in one big game against the Flyers, Labanc is currently listed as the Sharks’ top-line RW. How long he’ll be there is up in the air, but if he is playing with Pavelski and Kane it sounds like he’ll be able to chip in nicely!
Pavel Buchnevich – 6GP 2-1-3. I anticipated a big season for Buchnevich, but he has taken a huge ice-time hit as the Rangers look to jumble up their lines. 11 minutes per game from a non-rookie just isn’t going to cut it.
Derek Stepan – 5GP 0-0-0. I made the mistake of drafting Stepan last year thinking a #1C was a no-brainer, but the guy is off to yet another slow start. If he is owned, I would drop him but put him on my watch list in case he catches fire, but he didn’t do that until the second half last year.
JT Miller – 4GP 1-3-4. Miller will look like an attractive trading piece, as he is on Tampa Bay and has four in four. That being said, he has just been slapped down to the fourth line by Jon Cooper, and Tampa’s scoring is far too spread out for him to produce much down there. I’m sure Tampa’s lines will be shaken up again at some point, but sell him high while you can!
Shea Theodore – 7GP 0-0-0. I know I’m the high guy on Theodore, but hear me out. He takes at least three SOG/game, and plays 20+ minutes every night. The points HAVE to come eventually! C’mon man!
Aaron Ekblad – 4GP 0-0-0. Exact same situation as Theodore. This guy munches minutes and will soon be putting the puck in the back of the net! Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Ivan Provorov are currently in the same boat, but I think you would have to be stupid to drop those two.
Nikolaj Ehlers – 6GP 0-1-1. Though this is a slow start for the young Danish winger, if anyone is going to provide consistent secondary scoring for the Jets it’s this guy. I’ve seen him being shopped around in a couple leagues, but I think he will get the monkey off his back soon.
Casey Mittelstadt – 6GP 0-1-1. Patience. Mittelstadt may be in the #3C slot as of now, but he’s got good linemates in Okposo and Sobotka. Buffalo is doing the right thing here by sheltering his ice-time out of the gate, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he breaks out very soon.