Corey Abbott

Waiver Wired

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Last Chance for a Waiver Claim

Saturday, April 02, 2011

The final week of the NHL's 2010-11 season is upon us. Whether you are still in the running for a championship title, or you are looking for some players to add for next year, there are plenty of options available for the final home stretch.

Simon Gagne - LW - Tampa Bay Lightning

The 2010-11 campaign has been a tumultuous one for the former Philadelphia Flyer. Gagne got off to a very slow start with his new team in Tampa and injuries have slowed his progress this season. However, with the playoffs approaching and unrestricted free agency on the horizon, Gagne has stepped up and started producing the way you would expect a veteran player to at this point in the season. He has registered a point in four straight games heading into Saturday's match-up with the Minnesota Wild. Gagne has four goals and four assists over his recent point streak, and has racked up 14 points in his past 10 contests. The 31-year-old soon-to-be free agent would prefer to remain a member of the Lightning beyond this season, and getting hot at the right time may help him achieve his goal . He lined up alongside Steve Stamkos and Steve Downie in the Bolts' last game, however, Gagne will be effective with whomever he plays. He should be a solid addition to your squad.

Zach Parise - LW - New Jersey Devils

The dynamic winger is set to make his long-awaited return to New Jersey's lineup on Saturday night against Montreal in his first game since October 30th. Parise has been working hard to return from a torn meniscus in his right knee, and he has been practicing on the Devils' top line with center Travis Zajac and rookie Nick Palmieri. While he likely won't log his regular amount of ice time this weekend, his talent is undeniable and he plans to skate in all five of the Devils' remaining games. He may need a game or two get his confidence back and shake off some rust, but his offensive prowess makes him an attractive gamble. Don't forget about him at the draft table next season.

Cam Fowler - D - Anaheim Ducks

The 19-year-old blueliner has enjoyed a successful tour of duty in his first go-around at the NHL level. He started to slow down for a stretch, and it appeared as though he hit the dreaded rookie wall, but he picked up two goals and six helpers in his past nine games. Fowler has looked good on a dangerous Anaheim power play, which currently ranks fifth in the league. He has scored 20 of his 37 points with the man advantage this season. Fowler's plus-minus rating may be a concern if you decide to make him a late addition to your roster, but his long-term potential looks as if it will be worth the investment.

Ray Emery - G - Anaheim Ducks

Emery has looked very good in his comeback from a procedure that saw a part of his fibula inserted into a hole drilled into his hip. He has posted a 6-0-0 record with .935 save percentage and a 1.90 goals-against average with the Ducks in seven appearances. Jonas Hiller is still suffering from vertigo symptoms, so it wouldn't be surprising if Emery started most of the team's remaining five contests. Anaheim has two back-to-back situations left on their schedule, so Hiller will likely see action if he is up for it. Emery makes for a solid replacement for Hiller owners and can also be a decent depth goaltender for the remainder of the season.

Marc-Andre Gragnani - D - Buffalo Sabres

With 12 goals and 60 points in 63 games with Buffalo's AHL affiliate in Portland this season, it's no wonder why the Sabres called Gragnani up to serve as their power-play quarterback when they lost Jordan Leopold to a broken bone in his hand. He earned an assist in Buffalo's 1-0 win over the New York Rangers with his team on the man advantage. Gragnani makes for an interesting speculation but just keep in mind that he is 24-years-old, and has skated in just eight games in his NHL career.

Daymond Langkow - C - Calgary Flames

Langkow made his return to Calgary's active roster in a 3-2 victory over St. Louis Friday night. He logged 14:56 of ice time, recorded an assist and registered a plus-2 rating, in his first game since breaking a bone in his neck on March 21, 2010. He started out the game on the fourth line but due to the fact that the Flames are incredibly thin at center right now, he also saw time with Jarome Iginla and Alex Tanguay on the top unit. There's a good chance that he will remain there for the team's final three games.

Quick Pick:

Bryan Bickell - LW - Chicago Blackhawks

The Blackhawk rookie played on a line with Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane in Chicago's 4-3 shootout win over Columbus Friday. He netted his 17th goal of the season in the triumph and has plenty of value if he can keep this gig over the team's remaining five games. However, Patrick Sharp's possible return from a knee injury next week may impact on Bickell's first-line status.

Corey Abbott is an Associate Editor for Hockey on Rotoworld. Feel free to follow him Twitter @CoreAbbott.
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