Fantasy Hockey Waiver Wire Pickups: Week 10
A bit of news came over the wire this week in the NHL. Of course, you may be tired of hearing about William Nylander by now but this is big news for owners who rode out this storm (including yours truly), but he isn’t at 100% ownership yet and should be. A couple of minor transactions occurred as well, and Daniel Sprong may have a new lease on life in Anaheim.
Vincent Trocheck (FLA) 49%
Yes, he’s injured and is almost 50% owned, but this is not a guy who should have been dropped (unless you have very few bench spots). I’ve seen estimates as early as the first couple of weeks in January for a return, so if you have any room at all to stash a guy who hit 31 goals and 75 points last year, this should be one of your highest priorities.
J.T. Compher (COL) 7%
Compher is currently centering the second line for the high scoring Avalanche. They have scored the second most goals in the league and while the top line of MacKinnon, Rantanen, and Landeskog gets almost all of the attention, sometimes a second line on a team like Colorado quietly establishes itself as the season goes along. He already has six goals in his first 11 games and put up big numbers in college (63 points in 38 games during his final season).
Josh Anderson (CLS) 40%
With the recent emphasis on speed and skill, the power forward is becoming a rare species in the NHL. Anderson is starting to round into form as a legitimate specimen. He’s tough (just ask Jamie Benn), big at 220 lbs. and is currently on pace for a 34-goal season. While that may be a stretch, he could easily hit the 45-point range and is a consistent hitter.
Drake Batherson (OTT) 6%
Batherson is an exciting young rookie with great wheels and a spot on the number one line in Ottawa. His center is the red-hot Matt Duchene, and the chemistry has been evident so he’s definitely worth a shot on that basis alone. Duchene has 33 points in 27 games and Batherson has been keeping pace with seven points in his first nine games.
Jesper Bratt (NJ) 3%
Bratt is currently listed as day-to-day with an illness, so you may be able to add him on the sly this week. His 13:31 of average ice time suggest third line minutes, but he has played as a top-six forward before for the Devils. He had a respectable 35 points as a rookie and has nine points in his first 12 games this year.
Ondrej Palat (TAM) 9%
Palat may be at a crossroads in his career. Once viewed as an ascending star, he has plateaued the last couple of years. Injuries have played a roll, but it’s hard to explain diminishing returns when you play with the type of talent the Lightning rolls out on the top two lines. Having said that, his three-year average of 42 points in 64 games is pretty decent, and he’s on pace for a 48-point season this year. He’s currently on Stamkos’ line so he could light it up at any time.
Alexander Edler (VAN) 23%
Edler has only played 14 games this year and has yet to get untracked, but he’s a solid offensive defenseman with more talent up front than he’s seen for years in Vancouver. Edler has hit 30 points a couple of times and usually leads the team in ice time. As usual, injuries are the biggest concern.
T.J. Brodie (CGY) 14%
If you’re a Flames fan, this guy has probably given you ulcers, but he seems to be having a bounce-back year as Calgary is suddenly a top seven team under Bill Peters. Sometimes he plays tag instead of defense, but his plus-minus mark (+18) has made me believe in Santa again. He’s also a pretty slick offensive player with two 40-point seasons to his name.
Curtis McElhinney (CAR) 43%
Here’s another story of a 35-year-old journeyman backup goaltender getting his eighth or ninth shot at a starting gig. NHL goaltenders may be the most unique athletes in any sport, so this could either blow up in a week or be the feel-good story of the year. Former teammates vouch for his talent and he’s currently 7-2-0 with 2.10 goals against average and an impressive 0.930 save percentage. Ride him while he’s hot, however long that may be.
Paul Stastny (VGK) 17%
Stastny, suffering the dreaded lower-body injury, has been skating recently and may be only a couple of weeks away from returning to action. I like getting a jump on returning players, but again you may need room to stash him for two to three weeks. He’s hit 70 points three times in his career but is probably more of a 55-point player at this stage of his career. In Vegas, he will be in a great offensive system with some legitimate talent around him.