The NHL trade deadline is right around the corner and the player movement will surely attract the attention of fantasy owners looking to acquire depth for their playoff runs. A change of scenery represents new opportunities and picking up the right player in the right situation can be very beneficial to your squad. For example, a pair of intriguing names found themselves on new teams this week when forward Jeff Carter was dealt from Columbus to Los Angeles and the New Jersey Devils picked up offensive defenseman Marek Zidilicky from Minnesota. Both of them are more capable of finishing 2011-12 on high notes after experiencing some hard times with their former teams. With that in mind, here are some other players that could be available for the taking in your leagues, including a few who are already bouncing back into form:
Derek Roy - C - Buffalo Sabres - Roy has been largely disappointing this campaign. He was expected to produce at a much higher rate, if he managed to stay healthy which he has, but up until recently points had been extremely hard to come by. He has posted two goals and five assists in his past five games after notching just one goal and one helper in 10 contests during January. Buffalo's leading scorer, Jason Pominville, has helped reawaken Roy from his first-half slumber and the duo have displayed chemistry since being put together by coach Lindy Ruff. Roy's name has come up frequently in trade talks this year and whether he is dealt or not, it appears as though he will do his best to salvage what has been a tough year so he warrants consideration for the remainder of the season.
Teddy Purcell - RW - Tampa Bay Lightning - Depending on who you talked to prior to the 2011-12 campaign, Purcell was either going to significantly build on last season's success or be an overvalued bust. He came out of the gate strong before hitting a rough patch that he is just now working his way out of. Purcell has been red hot of late with 11 assists and 14 points in his last nine games. The 26-year-old winger has been effective on the power play during this scoring spurt and he has helped set up the NHL's leading goal-getter, Steve Stamkos, on a number of occassions recently. If he can continue rolling along then he should surpass his career-high totals of 17 goals and 51 points from last year.
Bryan Little - C, RW - Winnipeg Jets - Little has endured an up-and-down season with the Jets, which isn't something any perspective fantasy owner wants to hear from a team's top center. His horrendous start has been well documented and although he rebounded for productive showings in November and December, he slowed down drastically after New Years prior to picking his game once more in February. Heading into Saturday afternoon's tilt with St. Louis, the Winnipeg forward has registered four markers and three assists for a four-game point streak. He has amassed seven goals and 11 points in 12 matches this month, while playing on the club's first line with playmaking whiz Blake Wheeler and hard-working captain Andrew Ladd. Grabbing him while he's hot is practically recommended because judging from how his season has gone so far, another dry spell may very well be close.
Filip Kuba - D - Ottawa Senators - Kuba wasn't expected to be very fantasy relevant on Ottawa's blueline this season, but he has enjoyed a solid comeback performance after a disastrous showing in 2010-11. He battled injuries and inconsistency a year ago, while posting 16 points and a minus-26 rating in 64 appearances, but this time around he has contributed 22 points from the back end and has displayed a much-improve plus-19 rating in 53 contests. Kuba has collected one goal and three helpers in his past six games, to go along with a plus-8 rating. He has also been credited with 112 blocked shots, while logging 23:33 of ice time per match. He should make for a solid addition to most defense corps in need of some depth.
Jiri Tlusty - C, LW - Carolina Hurricanes - Tlusty is having a banner-year with the Canes. He has already generated personal bests in goals (14), assists (14), points (28) and games played (61) this campaign. The reason why he should garner fantasy attention now though is because of his present nine-game point spree. The 23-year-old forward has recorded four goals and added six helpers over that span. He has benefited from playing alongside Carolina's star player, Eric Staal, and should be picked up while the pair are firing on all cylinders.
Derek Dorsett - RW - Columbus Blue Jackets - If your league places a high priority on penalty minutes as a positive then Dorsett may already be taken. He is after all the NHL leader in minutes spent in the sin bin this season at 177. However, if he is available then he can bring something to the table for possible fantasy general managers. Dorsett has dropped the gloves 15 times this year, which ranks him third overall, but where he differs from most enforcers is that he plays much more regularly and has averaged 14:16 of ice time per game. When his 10 goals, 15 points and 146 hits are added into the equation as well, Dorsett makes for a solid fantasy player in deep leagues that reward players for being rough and tumble.