The first big trade deadline move happened two weeks early. Jason Zucker was sent to Pittsburgh in Bill Guerin’s first big move as Wild GM, in exchange for Alex Galchenyuk, Calen Addison, and a first round pick. So what does this do for Zucker’s fantasy value? It puts it through the roof. Zucker immediately went on Crosby’s wing in his first game, registering five shots on goals against the Lightning in 15 minutes. Sure, he’s not going to get PP1 time, but the upside is tremendous given this opportunity. I grabbed Zucker in every league that I could just in case that it clicks with Crosby. We’ve seen Zucker score 30 goals in a season before and generate a ton of chances; now it’ll be even easier with Crosby. As for the Wild side of things, it’s a really good return. Addison was the Penguins’ top prospect, and while their system wasn’t loaded, he safely projects as a second pair, potential PP defenseman. I don’t see huge upside, but there’s value there. As for Galchenyuk, it can’t get any worse than it was in Pittsburgh. He only received 12 minutes in his first game, and I’m certainly not rushing to use him, but it’s worth monitoring to see if that changes.
Before I get to the games, best wishes to Jay Bouwmeester who collapsed on the bench Tuesday from a cardiac episode. The game was postponed at that moment and it looks like we had the best case scenario in terms of J-Bo’s current health status. Here’s to hoping he can get back on the ice sooner than later.
Derek Stepan – Goal and an assist with three shots and two PIM. His days of being a two-way forward are done, and that’s because the offense dried up. No fantasy value here.
Shea Weber – Out four to six weeks. Weber avoided disaster as it looked like he was going to be out for the season. Jeff Petry gets a value boost while Ben Chiarot gets some value in deep leagues.
Carter Hart – 30 saves on 31 shots in the 4-1 win over the Panthers. It’s been up and down this season for Hart, which is expected from a 21 year old. The GAA is already good which makes him a solid #2 with upside.
James van Riemsdyk – Goal and an assist with two shots. Decent streak from JVR who I’m bumping up to solid streamer.
Josh Bailey – Three assists with three shots. He’s a bottom end streamer because of the poor shot volume. If you solely need points, you can bump him up a bit.
Brock Nelson – Three assists with two shots. Nelson has been extremely good this season across the board. I don’t see it getting much better than this, but he doesn’t have to be as he’s already a top 100 player.
Anthony Beauvillier – Two goals on four shots. Great run from Beauvillier with 11 points in his last 10 games. Elite streamer at the moment.
Nicklas Backstrom – Two assists with two shots. Backstrom has been his usual self this season, he’s just had some poor shooting luck. It should turn around and see him get a slight goal boost going forward.
John Carlson – Goal and an assist with five shots. Carlson just hasn’t slowed down all season. He’s having the best season from a defenseman in quite a long time.
Curtis McElhinney – 31 saves on 32 shots in the 2-1 OT win over the Blue Jackets. He doesn’t play much, but McElhinney is worth streaming in most starts solely for the high probability of getting a win.
Nikita Kucherov – Two goals on eight shots, both assisted by Brayden Point. Nothing can slow these guys down right now except an injury, which sadly happened to Kucherov on Tuesday. It doesn’t sound serious, but we should find out Thursday.
Quinn Hughes – Three assists with a shot and two PIM. Hughes falling to 7th overall in his draft is mind blowing. He’s been great immediately and is giving Makar a run for his money for the Calder.
J.T. Miller – Goal and an assist with two shots and two PIM. Miller has been better than anyone could have expected.
Adam Gaudette – Two assists with a shot. He’s shown some real upside, but Gaudette is a bottom end streamer for now because of the lack of playing time.
Elias Pettersson – Two assists with a shot. Pettersson is right at a point per game and the shot rate has taken a nice step forward. I think we see the big jump next season in that department which will give him a chance to be a top 20 player.
Milan Lucic – Goal and two assists with four shots and two PIM. Still don’t care.
Zac Rinaldo – Goal and an assist with three shots. It’s ridiculous that this clown is still getting NHL minutes.
Mikael Backlund – Goal and an assist with two shots. He’s had a point in four straight, but I’m still not looking to stream Backlund.
Mark Jankowski – Goal and an assist. He has five points on the season. And there’s your annual Jankowski update!
Noah Hanifin – Two assists with two shots. With Mark Giordano out, Hanifin is on the top PP unit. If you need some help on the blueline, Hanifin is worth gambling on.
Erik Karlsson – Goal and an assist with four shots. The shot rate has dropped to average for a defenseman which takes a bunch of his value. I don’t think it’s going to get better next season, but there is still a #2D here with all of the assists he gives.
Darren Helm – Two goals on five shots. Couldn’t care less about Helm at this point of his career.
Anthony Mantha – Two assists with four shots in his first game back. Mantha was buzzing all night long. If he’s available in your league, grab him immediately.
Marcus Johansson – Goal and an assist. Johansson is an easy pass in standard leagues.
Sam Reinhart – Goal and an assist with five shots. Reinhart is over a point per game for the last 5-6 weeks and is having quite the season. He finally looks like the #2 pick that he was.
Nathan MacKinnon – Two assists with four shots. It feels like MacKinnon has slowed down because he hasn’t had a big game lately, but he was consistently getting a point before this two point affair. He’s still my leader for the Hart Trophy.
Philipp Grubauer – 34 save shutout in the 3-0 win over the Senators. Grubauer is on fire right now. We’ve seen the big run from him before so hopefully we get that again this season.
Mark Pysyk – Goal and two assists with two shots, as did Mike Matheson. The Panthers are giving these two games at forward and somehow they’re scoring regularly. I don’t see much here for season long leagues, although it makes them viable DFS targets.
Noel Acciari – Goal and two assists. His role is all over the place but at the moment, he’s not worth streaming.
Claude Giroux – Two assists with a shot. Three strong games in a row for Giroux, who is hopefully building towards a good second half. Either way, he’s a hold.
Scott Laughton – Two assists with a shot. Easy pass.
Mathew Barzal – Three assists with three shots and two PIM. I still don’t know what Barzal’s norm season is going to be, but I think it’s closer to his rookie season than last’s.
Jordan Eberle – Goal and an assist with three shots. Nice run from Eberle with eight points in his last nine games. He’s back to being a solid streamer.
Leo Komarov – Goal and an assist. That’s former All-Star Uncle Leo Komarov! He doesn’t carry any fantasy value any more. And there’s your annual Komarov update!
Andrei Vasilevskiy – 35 saves on 36 shots in the 2-1 win over the Penguins. He’s back to being the #1 goalie again and is as good of a bet as anyone to be the best the rest of the way.
Zach Hyman – Two goals with two PIM. He played over 20 minutes in this game and has nine points in his last eight games. Surprisingly, Hyman has 30 points in 38 games with solid PIM. Sure, the shots aren’t great, but Hyman is worth owning for the time being.
Alex Kerfoot – Two assists with three shots. Kerfoot has been slightly worse this season than last in Colorado. He’s not worth using outside of deep leagues.
Igor Shesterkin – 42 saves on 43 shots in the 4-1 win over the Jets. He had to leave the game for 6 minutes due to a ridiculous concussion test ruling, but Shesterkin was incredible again. He needs to be owned everywhere right now even if the volume isn’t great.
Chris Kreider – Two goals on five shots. Mika Zibanejad had a goal and an assist while Pavel Buchnevich dished two assists while adding four shots. This line is so fun to watch; we should enjoy it while it lasts. Buch is an elite streamer while the other two are easy holds.
Ryan Strome – Goal and an assist with six shots. Strome is still playing with Panarin and piling up the points, although he’s cooled off abit. His fantasy value is going to take a hit if he’s moved at the deadline. He’s right on the fringe, although I lean towards holding.
Alex Stalock – 26 save shutout in the 4-0 win over the Golden Knights. He’s been fairly good this season based on Stalock’s previous standards. Stalock is a tier above desperation.
Kevin Fiala – Goal and two assists with six shots. Fiala is on a massive tear with ten points in his last five games. He needs to be held everywhere while he’s on fire.
Zach Parise – Goal and an assist with three shots. He’s with Fiala and Staal on the first line which gives him a bit of a value boost. He’s a solid streamer for now.
Anton Khudobin – 24 saves on 25 shots in the 4-1 win over the Hurricanes. Khudobin is right on the fringe of being worth owning. At the least, he’s a must stream every start he receives.
Jamie Benn – Hat trick. This season has been a disaster for Benn, but he’s shown some signs of life lately. If someone lost patience and cut him, I’d grab Benn to see if he can build off this.
Miro Heiskanen – Two assists with a shot. He really cooled off after a fast start. Heiskanen is still worth owning, but it’s bottom end for now. The future remains bright.
Patrick Kane – Two assists with six shots. Kane has been remarkably consistent yet again.
Brandon Saad – Goal and an assist with three shots. Saad is an elite streamer as long as he sticks on a line with Kane.
Leon Draisaitl – Goal and three assists with four shots. With McDavid going down and Draisaitl continuing to pile up points, he’s going to make a real run at the Hart. Also, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins played almost 25 minutes in this game scoring a goal and an assist with five shots, while Kailer Yamamoto scored two goals on four shots in 20 minutes. These three are going to get a massive workload over the next couple weeks bare minimum. Yamamoto needs to be owned everywhere now.
Tuukka Rask – 28 saves on 29 shots in the 4-1 win over the Canadiens. He hasn’t allowed more than two goals in 2020. Rask has been the #1 goalie on the season fairly easily despite not having elite volume.
David Pastrnak – Hat trick on seven shots. Just as Ovechkin goes on a massive heater to take the goal lead, Pasta scores a hat trick to take it back. He’s been the #1 player on the season and has a real chance of finishing that way.
Brad Marchand – Two assists with two shots and four PIM. He cooled off for a week but Marchand got right back on track. He’ll finish as a top 5 player conservatively.
Elias Lindholm – Two goals on three shots playing over 23 minutes. Eight game point streak from Lindholm who is getting back towards last season’s breakout. In fact, it looks like Lindholm is going to easily set a career high in goals.
Johnny Gaudreau – Two assists with five shots. Here’s to hoping Gaudreau gets on the same roll as Lindholm is on.
Anze Kopitar – Two assists with four shots. It’s boring, but Kopitar still needs to be held everywhere.
Jacob Markstrom – 49 save shutout in the 3-0 win over the Blackhawks. Markstrom stole the show on the jersey retirement night for the Sedins. He was going through a rough patch before this, but Markstrom still has a strong .918 sv% on the season. He’s an easy #2G at this point.
Brandon Sutter – Goal and two assists with two PIM. I don’t want to use Sutter at this point outside of deep leagues.
Three Point Challenge: We’ll be doing the Three Point Challenge for tonight’s games. Again, as a reminder, no top 10 players in the league in points can be chosen. For Thursday, I will take Brayden Point.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back on Friday recapping the action from Thursday night. As always, feel free to ask any questions, give any comments, or leave any suggestions below. Thanks for reading, take care!