We’re midway through Week 6 of the fantasy hockey season, which is once again flying by.
Whether you’re a contender or looking toward the future, the trade market always needs to be a part of your strategy. Risers and fallers are constants as we look to connect on some value on both sides of the ledger.
Let’s have a look at some buy-and-sell candidates as we move into the second half of November!
NHL Fantasy Hockey Trade Advice
We were high on Flyers winger Owen Tippett ahead of the 2023-24 NHL season, and he is starting to come around after a slow start.
After tallying just two points through his first five games, Tippett has recorded six goals and three helpers for nine points over his last 11 games, including four goals and an assist over his last three. As he did last season, the 24-year-old is getting plenty of pucks on goal with 52 shots in his 16 games, good for 3.25 shots per game. He averaged an even three shots per game in 77 contests last season.
His ice time is down from last season at 15:20 from 17:26 per game, but that’s mainly due to a healthier Flyers lineup. More specifically, it’s the return of Cam Atkinson, who has largely occupied first-line minutes on the right wing where Tippett skated down the stretch a season ago. It’s always difficult to predict John Tortorella’s usage of his players, but Tippett is seeing solid playing time while making the most of it of late.
A young player who broke out with 27 goals and a big-time shot volume is always an asset that needs to be targeted on the trade market.
Let’s have a look at another right-shot winger up front for the Flyers in the form of the cross-category-producing Travis Konecny.
Although he’s nearly 98% rostered in ESPN leagues, it seems he remains one of the more underrated players in fantasy hockey. The 26-year-old is once again packing the stat sheet across the board, notching 10 goals and 14 points across 16 games. He has also recorded 52 shots and 32 penalty minutes across 18:04 of ice time per game. Those 32 penalty minutes are tied with Tom Wilson for seventh in the league.
Last season, Konecny tallied 31 goals, 61 points, 77 penalty minutes, 15 power-play points and 55 hits in just 60 games. His 191 shots in that time were good for 3.18 shots per game, a pace he has slightly exceeded this season. It was his second straight season recording 77 penalty minutes but in 19 fewer contests.
He is absolutely worthy of a sizeable package considering his ability to deliver across the board.
The moment the Penguins acquired Erik Karlsson from the San Jose Sharks in the summer, it spelled doom for long-time Pens blueliner Kris Letang. His value won’t be terribly high at this point but his name value and 90% rostership in ESPN leagues do still carry some weight.
He hasn’t been terrible this season but he has predictably been a distant second to Karlsson on that Penguins blueline. The 36-year-old has one goal and eight points in 14 games, with 27 shots on goal, 17 hits, 12 penalty minutes and a plus-five rating. However, his biggest fault has been zero power-play points. He has been reduced to second-unit duties, and that group just doesn’t see many opportunities behind a loaded top unit.
The regression actually kicked in last season for a player who had a tough year off the ice, personally, and with more injury woes. Letang recorded 12 goals and 41 points in 64 games, his lowest point total while playing at least that many games since the 2009-10 season. He still delivered 162 hits and put 161 shots on goal, but those rates have taken a hit through 14 games this season.
Maybe he can be used in a lesser deal or as part of a package in a bigger move, but Letang’s numbers continue to go south, making now the time to cut bait.
Another right-shot defenseman, Vegas’ Alex Pietrangelo, is another veteran seeing his numbers tail off.
Through 11 games, the 12-year veteran has notched one goal, a healthy nine points and a quality plus-five rating. His 31 shots in that time are solid for a defenseman. However, he also has zero penalty minutes, three hits and only a pair of power-play points. Shea Theodore has been the preferred option on the club’s top power-play unit, lowering Pietrangelo’s value.
There’s reason to believe he can bounce back a bit. As noted, his shot volume is nice and his 3.2% shooting rate is roughly half his 6% career mark. It would be the lowest rate of his career if the season ended today, as he should start to score more goals moving forward.
Coming off a 54-point season in just 73 games last season, Pietrangelo is by no means a poor fantasy hockey option. However, his name value and 97.2% rostership are bloating his value, which is good for current Pietrangelo managers. However, the prudent move is to get him on the block and float his name out as a piece to acquire an asset on the rise.