MORE FANTASY COVERAGE: Top 10 waiver wire pickups
Hall traded to Bruins
The Boston Bruins acquired left wing Taylor Hall from the Buffalo Sabres on Monday, giving him bounce-back potential in fantasy for the rest of the season.
A potential unrestricted free agent after this season, Hall joins a Stanley Cup contender and is likely to slot in on the second line at even strength with center David Krejci and either right wing David Pastrnak or Craig Smith, who has scored 10 points (one goal, nine assists) in his past seven games. Pastrnak was recently reunited with elite forwards Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand on the top line to try to boost his even-strength production (three EVP in past 14 games). Hall could take the fourth forward spot on the first power play with Marchand, Bergeron and Pastrnak, giving the left wing a high fantasy ceiling, especially with Boston having the third most remaining games in the NHL (17 left; 39 played).
Hall, who won the Hart Trophy as the NHL’s most valuable player with the New Jersey Devils in 2017-18, scored a career-high 39 goals, 93 points and 37 power-play points that season. But Hall, who was traded to the Arizona Coyotes by the Devils last season prior to the NHL Trade Deadline before signing a one-year contract with the Sabres this past offseason, has been one of the biggest disappointments in fantasy this season.
He has scored two goals on 88 shots on goal in 37 games, the lowest shooting percentage (2.3) in the NHL among forwards with more than 50 SOG. Still, Hall was the most popular player to stash in fantasy ahead of the NHL Trade Deadline and should reward his fantasy managers with Boston being arguably the best possible landing spot for his short-term fantasy stock.
The Hall trade significantly boosts the value of Krejci (another potential 2021 UFA) and potential goal support of Boston’s goalie streaming options Jeremy Swayman and Dan Vladar. Starter Tuukka Rask, who’s nearing a return from injury, was already a top 10 fantasy goalie for the rest of the season and now has added fantasy appeal with Boston bolstering its scoring depth. The Bruins’ fantasy-relevant defensemen, Matt Grzelcyk and Charlie McAvoy, are currently out with injuries, but one or both should benefit from exposure to Hall at even strength and/or on the power play upon returning. Left wing Nick Ritchie, who has played mostly on the second line and first power play this season, could lose the most fantasy value of any Bruins player as a result of the Hall trade.
Carter traded to Penguins
The Pittsburgh Penguins acquired veteran forward Jeff Carter from the Los Angeles Kings on Monday, giving him a higher fantasy ceiling for the rest of the season. Carter, who is a potential 2022 UFA, led the Kings with 117 shots on goal in 40 games (2.9 per game) this season and had their sixth most points (19 in 40 games).
Carter is a deep fantasy sleeper for the rest of the season with a best-case fantasy scenario of playing on the Penguins’ second line with forward Jared McCann and eventually elite center Evgeni Malkin, who’s currently out with a lower-body injury.
Foligno traded to Maple Leafs, must quarantine
The Toronto Maple Leafs acquired forward Nick Foligno from the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday, boosting his fantasy value ahead of a likely role in the top nine for a Stanley Cup contender.
Foligno, who has provided rare coverage of points (0.51 per game) and hits (2.1 per game) in his NHL career, could skate at left wing on either the first line with elite duo Auston Matthews and Mitchell Marner or second unit with valuable center John Tavares. Foligno, a potential UFA after this season, will have to quarantine for at least seven days due to COVID-19 protocols after arriving in Toronto because he is crossing the United States-Canada border.
Dubnyk traded to Avalanche
The Colorado Avalanche acquired goalie Devan Dubnyk from the San Jose Sharks on Saturday. Dubnyk, who is readily available in fantasy at a scarce position, is expected to compete for the backup job behind elite goalie Philipp Grubauer and provide quality fantasy performance in spot starts.
Dubnyk, a potential UFA after this season, had three wins, including one shutout, and an .898 save percentage in 17 games for the Sharks this season but has bounce-back appeal in a likely tandem with Grubauer. Dubnyk, who has five seasons of at least 31 wins in the NHL, and Colorado’s other depth goalie, Jonas Johansson (3-0-1, .929 SV%, one shutout with Avalanche), could each see playing time and quality starts down the stretch whenever Colorado decides to occasionally rest Grubauer.
Palmieri traded to Islanders
The New York Islanders acquired Kyle Palmieri from the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday, giving the right wing renewed fantasy upside for the rest of the season. Palmieri, a potential UFA after the season, brings a strong fantasy pedigree to the Islanders after scoring at least 24 goals and 18 power-play points in each of his five full seasons with the Devils.
He has scored 54 power-play goals since 2015-16 (11th in NHL). Although he scored 17 points (eight goals, nine assists), five on the power play, with 84 shots on goal in 34 games for New Jersey this season, he has bounce-back appeal after the trade and is a big upgrade for New York’s power play (18.6 percent; 22nd in NHL).
Palmieri, who also covers hits (1.4 per game in NHL career), immediately becomes the Islanders’ second most-valuable fantasy forward behind elite center Mathew Barzal, whom Palmieri could skate with at even strength and/or on the power play. Palmieri has scored one power-play goal with four SOG in three games with the Islanders mostly skating on a line with center Jean-Gabriel Pageau.
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