Acquisitions of Tyler Toffoli, Jason Zucker, Jack Campbell and Alec Martinez have already paid immediate dividends for their new teams. There were plenty of deals leading into Monday’s trade deadline that could pay off down the stretch, while serving as strong fantasy pickups.
Editor's Note: Drafting is only half the battle. Dominate all season long with our Season Pass! Use our NEW Lineup Adviser, get our Weekly and Rest-of-Season rankings and projections, track all of your players and more on your way to a championship! Click here for more!
Andreas Athanasiou - Detroit => Edmonton
Athanasiou has struggled this season, while contributing 10 goals and 24 points in 46 games. However, he had been playing a bit better of late with five goals, seven points and 33 shots in his last 12 outings. Athanasiou’s move to Edmonton has the potential to provide his fantasy value with a significant boost. He is expected to get a chance to play with Connor McDavid. They both have speed to burn and could be a productive duo down the stretch, while backing off opposing defenders and finding each other streaking towards the net. Athanasiou was a 30-goal scorer in 2018-19 and there’s reason to believe that he can return to that form with the Oilers.
Vincent Trocheck - Florida => Carolina
Trocheck was limited to 55 games last season due to an ankle injury and he’s posted similar numbers in 2019-20 through 55 matches this campaign. Trocheck has two more assists this year, but he’s been credited with 29 fewer shots. He broke out in 2017-18 with 31 goals and 75 points in 82 contests. Trocheck had been showing signs of that play recently with three goals and eight points in his last 10 outings. He should slot into Carolina’s second-line center role, which would bump Jordan Staal to the third combination. Trocheck will get a chance to play with the likes of Martin Necas, Nino Niederreiter, Justin Williams or Warren Foegele. He should be a very good fit with the Hurricanes and his offensive ability will be put to good use.
Sami Vatanen - New Jersey => Carolina
Vatanen has been sidelined since Feb. 1 due to a lower-body injury. It’s unclear when he will be available to return, but he could be worthy of a flier when that happens. He has topped 30 points three times before and has had plenty of success as a power-play quarterback. Carolina also acquired Brady Skjei prior to Monday’s deadline. He has offensive upside as well, but he’s unlikely to be used in power-play situations.
Robin Lehner - Chicago => Vegas
Lehner has played well for Chicago this season, while sharing the crease with Corey Crawford. It was expected that his numbers would slip this year after playing behind a much stronger defensive Islanders team in 2018-19. Lehner should get more wins and stronger overall statistics with the Pacific Division-leading Golden Knights, which will benefit his fantasy owners. Marc-Andre Fleury has struggled in 2019-20, which could open the door for another timeshare situation for Lehner. That’s something he is probably used to by now.
Erik Haula - Carolina => Florida
Haula was sent to Florida as part of the return for Trocheck and is the leading candidate to fill in on the second line. That would put Haula in a great spot to succeed, as Mike Hoffman and Evgenii Dadonov are more than capable scorers. Haula has been quiet offensively since the calendar turned to 2020, but he had 11 goals and 17 points in 21 matches before that. As a pending UFA, he is also playing for his next contract.
Patrick Marleau - San Jose => Pittsburgh
Marleau will get another chance to try to earn an elusive Stanley Cup as a member of the Penguins. He could end up on Pittsburgh's third line, but it wouldn’t be a surprise if he got a look alongside Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin at some point. The 40-year-old forward is still capable of contributing offensively and it’s worth monitoring his situation down the stretch.
Conor Sheary - Buffalo => Pittsburgh
Sheary will find himself in a similar situation to Marleau, as he could be moved up and down the lineup. He had 23 goals and 53 points in 61 games in 2016-17, while playing alongside Sidney Crosby. Sheary is another player worth keeping an eye on because of the tremendous upside that playing with Pittsburgh’s top player provides.
Vladislav Namestnikov - Ottawa => Colorado
Namestnikov has the potential to return value for the Avalanche right away. Colorado is hurting up front due to injuries, so Namestnikov could get a look alongside Nathan MacKinnon or slot into a secondary role at even strength as well as the power play. Playing with MacKinnon would instantly make him an attractive option. Namestnikov was a decent contributor for the Senators, especially early after his acquisition from the New York Rangers when he had six goals and 11 points in his first 14 outings.
Jean-Gabriel Pageau - Ottawa => New York Islanders
Pageau has recorded a personal best 24 goals this season and he has 40 points through 60 contests. He had been logging a career-high 19:18 of ice time per game, which he won’t get with the Islanders. Pageau will probably slot in on New York’s third line behind centers Mathew Barzal and Brock Nelson, which would significantly hurt his fantasy value. He has never been reliant on power-play points, but taking on a reduced role won’t be good for poolies who have stuck with him. The Islanders signed him to a six-year contract extension following the acquisition from Ottawa.
Ilya Kovalchuk - Montreal => Washington
Kovalchuk was acquired from Montreal leading into Monday’s deadline. He collected six goals and 13 points in 22 games with the Canadiens after he was cut loose by Los Angeles. There’s always the chance that Kovalchuk could play alongside Alex Ovechkin at some point, but Washington’s top-six group stands a very good chance of staying intact. It’s expected that he will start on the third line with Lars Eller and Carl Hagelin. That will still give him some fantasy value, but the nearly 19 minutes of ice time per match he was getting is sure to decrease.
Ondrej Kase - Anaheim => Boston
Kase is nearly back to full health following an illness. He practiced with the Bruins for the first time on Monday alongside David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk, but he may not make his team debut on Tuesday night. When Kase is available, he should be able to get back on track this season. The change of scenery, while playing on a strong team gearing up for the playoffs could be just what he needs to finally break through. Kase’s career-low 5.2 shooting percentage is highly unlikely to continue. He is a high-volume shooter with plenty of offensive upside. Boston also acquired Nick Ritchie from Anaheim on Monday and he should be a good fit on the team's third line.
Danton Heinen - Boston => Anaheim
Heinen displayed some promise in 2017-18 during his first full NHL campaign when he accounted for 16 goals and 47 points in 77 games. However, his play has dropped off since then and he became expendable for the Bruins. Heinen will likely be given a fresh start with the Ducks. He will likely get an opportunity to play in the team’s top-six forward group. He could be worthy of a pickup if he clicks with Ryan Getzlaf, Rickard Rakell or Adam Henrique.
Erik Gustafsson - Chicago => Calgary
Gustafsson erupted for 17 goals and 60 points in 79 matches last season. It’s been a much different story for him in 2019-20 with six goals and 20 assists through 59 games. Gustafsson piled up 18 points on the power play during his breakout performance and the Flames would be wise to try him out on the top unit. He could occupy that role even when Mark Giordano is ready to return from a hamstring injury, as Calgary’s 18th-ranked power play could use a jolt.
Wayne Simmonds - New Jersey => Buffalo
Simmonds could be a fit for Buffalo’s second or third line, but a spot alongside highly-coveted center Jack Eichel probably isn’t in the cards for him. Sam Reinhart appears to have a lock on that right-wing slot. Dominik Kahun, who was acquired from Pittsburgh, could be used on the second line as well. Unfortunately, there isn’t enough depth there to indicate that either player will make much of a splash. Simmonds was logging big minutes on the power play with the Devils, but he’ll probably end up on the second unit of the Sabres.