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Waiver Wired

Getting by without Lundqvist

by Ryan Dadoun
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Had Corey not already recommended John Klingberg last week, I would have included him in this article.  His career is off to a fantastic start with 10 goals and 27 points in 38 games and the Stars have been using him liberally with the man advantage.  He's still available in a majority of Yahoo leagues and you should grab him right away if he's available in yours.

 

Chris Stewart (BUF) - RW - Owned in 8% of Yahoo leagues

 

Stewart has 21 points and a minus-28 rating in 51 games this season, so it's not at all surprising that he's a free agent in the vast majority of leagues.  That being said, he's been much better recently with four goals and nine points in his last eight contests.  That alone makes him intriguing, but what really makes him noteworthy is the upcoming trade deadline.  He's set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer and given the Sabres' position, it would be surprising if he wasn't traded.  That could provide him with a significant boost depending on where he goes.  If you gamble on him now while he's still widely available, he could pay off big in the final weeks of the season.

 

Evgeny Kuznetsov (WAS) - C/LW - Owned in 37% of Yahoo leagues

 

With six goals and 22 points in 51 games this season, Kuznetsov's first full NHL season hasn't been nearly as exciting as some were hoping for.  He's just 22 years old though and was making the transition from the KHL to NHL, so less than ideal season hasn't done much to dampen my enthusiasm about his future.  For the rest of this season he remains a substantial risk, but he's not a bad short-term pickup.  He's on a three-game point streak and has two goals and seven points in seven contests.  This is as hot as he's gotten so far and if you like to grab players that are on a roll and ride out their streak, he is a great candidate for that.

 

Cam Atkinson (CLM) - RW - Owned in 9% of Yahoo leagues

 

Atkinson endured a lengthy cold stretch where he didn't record a single point over the span of 11 games from Dec. 13 through Jan. 16, but he's thawed out of it.  He has three goals and six points in his last six contests, giving him 21 points in 47 games overall.  He's a bit of a better player than his numbers to date suggest and it wouldn't be surprising to see him record about 15 points over Columbus' final 31 games.  That might not be an exciting figure, but it does make him noteworthy as an injury replacement, especially in deeper leagues.

 

Mike Fisher (NSH) - C - Owned in 31% of Yahoo leagues

 

I mentioned Fisher in the Waiver Wired back on Jan. 11 back when he was owned in 11% of leagues, but he's worth bringing up again because for many people, the option to grab him still exists.  Fisher missed the start of the season due to an Achilles injury, but he has 13 goals and 25 points in 31 contests.  He's getting ice time with two talented linemates in James Neal and Colin Wilson and playing under coach Peter Laviolette, who has helped reinvigorate the Predators' offense this season.  With that in mind, I believe Fisher's current pace is sustainable and that makes him worth owning in standard leagues.

 

Brad Boyes (FLA) - C/RW - Owned in 4% of Yahoo leagues

 

Boyes had just 36 points in 75 games last season, but the Florida Panthers as a team were pretty terrible offensively in 2013-14.  The Panthers have done somewhat better this season and Boyes has consequently seen an improvement with 10 goals and 25 points in 48 contests.  He's been more effective lately with two goals and seven points in 10 games while playing on a line with Jonathan Huberdeau and Aleksander Barkov.  That trio has meshed well and should be critical for the Panthers as they fight for a Wild Card spot.  With so much on the line in Florida, Boyes isn't a bad guy to roll the dice on going forward.

 

Jordan Staal (CAR) - C - Owned in 14% of Yahoo leagues

 

Staal has only played in 16 games this season due to a fractured fibula, but he's been effective since his return with two goals and 11 points.  A big part of that has to do with the fact that he's been paired up with his older brother Eric Staal and has consequently been getting top line minutes.  That arrangement isn't likely to change anytime soon though, so naturally I'm not too concerned about the prospect of a shakeup slowing Jordan down.  With that in mind, the younger Staal should be regarded as a fair bet to get 15-20 points over Carolina's last 30 games.

 

Derek Dorsett (VAN) - RW - Owned in 5% of Yahoo leagues

 

Dorsett certainly isn't right for everyone, but he can be very useful to specific owners.  If you're in a rotisserie league and trailing in penalty minutes, then grabbing Dorsett can help you pick up some potentially critical points.  He's second in the league with 123 PIM in 48 contests and should continue to get into trouble at roughly the same pace.  He's certainly not nearly as appealing from an offensive perspective, but he's not completely useless in that regard either.  He has five goals and 15 points, which is a decent number for a leader in penalty minutes.

 

Cam Talbot (NYR) - G - Owned in 36% of Yahoo league

 

Under normal circumstances, Talbot's fantasy value would be limited by the presence of workhorse goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, but obviously right now that's not the case.  Lundqvist has a vascular injury that's expected to cost him at least three weeks.  In the meantime, Talbot should get the bulk of the Rangers' playing time and do a fair job under those circumstances.  He's a solid goaltender in his own right playing for a good team.  The Rangers have grown accustomed to having Lundqvist, but they shouldn't collapse under Talbot.

Ryan Dadoun
Ryan Dadoun is an Associate Editor for Hockey on Rotoworld. Feel free to follow him on Twitter or check out his blog.