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Fantasy Hockey: Week One Waiver Wire

Category: NHL Tags: Waiver Wire Fantasy Fantasy Hockey NHL Comments: 0
Fantasy Hockey: Week One Waiver Wire - 10/6/2013 Free NHL Analysis

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Week One of Fantasy Hockey can make or break your season. It's time to dump the duds and make up for any poor moves made during the draft. Listed below are a few viable options that can boost any fantasy hockey team.

Defense:

Tyson Barrie: Only owned in 41% of Yahoo fantasy hockey leagues, Barrie is a young offensive defenseman with high end potential. Barrie will be quarterbacking the powerplay for the Colorado Avalanche at least to start the season. He is an under sized guy with great instincts and puck moving skills. He made the All Star team in 2009 and 2010 for the WHL and is poised to have a break out season this year. Erik Johnson is the current number one defenseman on this team but Tyson Barrie could easily take over that role. Barrie needs to be on your fantasy radar.

Jacob Trouba: Owned in just 17% of Yahoo fantasy hockey leagues, Trouba was the 9th overall selected player in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. He has high end potential and will quickly become one of the best young blueliners in the NHL. Trouba has excellent size and his physical game will meet the challenge which the NHL brings. He is great at using his size to seperate players from the puck. Trouba is also an excellent skater and moves the puck well. He has a powerful shot and great offensive skills. Trouba could potentially be a 15 goal scorer if he can stay healthy. The only weakness he has is that sometimes he is too aggressive but playing with Dustin Byfuglien should improve his hockey sense. Pick this guy up.

Rasmus Ristolainen: Owned in just 1% of Yahoo fantasy hockey leagues, the 8th overall pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft is someone to keep an eye one. If you are in a dynasty league then you might want to pick up Ristolainen as soon as possible. Ristolainen is an all around stellar defenseman. He has good size, skating ability, shooting, and pucking handling skills. Ristolainen will make an impact for the Sabres this season on the defensive side of the ice. He will receive ample ice time due to Buffalo's rebuilding mode. Ristolainen has had success at every level that he has played in and he has the ability to be a factor on offense. He can jump into the play and contribute offensively. Expect Ristolainen to climb up the Buffalo depth chart this season.

Center:

Mikhail Grabovski: Owned in just 60% of Yahoo fantasy hockey leagues, Grabovski is a dangerous offensive asset that will not stay on the waiver wire long. Grabovski was brought in by the Washington Capitals to replace Mike Ribiero. He opened the season up with a four point effort against the former Stanley Cup Champion Blackhawks. Grabovski has had over 20 goals in three out of his last five seasons. He should see a ton of powerplay time with the Washington Capitals and the centerman could have ice time with MVP Alexander Ovechkin. Grabovski could easily have a career year this season with the high flying Capitals. Grab Grabovski before it's too late!

Tomas Hertl: Owned in just 10% of Yahoo fantasy hockey leagues, Hertl is playing on San Jose's top line alongside Joe Thornton and Brent Burns. A former 17th overall selection in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, he has already contributed two goals and an assist in his first two games in the NHL. Hertl boasts huge speed and can light the lamp at will. In 48 games in the top league in the Czech Republic, Hertl scored 18 goals and had 12 helpers. Hertl has the size to make a serious impact in the NHL. He is 6'2 and 210 pounds. Hertl is a native centerman but is playing left wing on the top line with Thornton and Burns. Hopefully his position in fantasy leagues becomes updated to make him a more viable option since there is so much depth at center. Either way, Hertl is a future star in the NHL and you need to pick him up as soon as possible.

Nathan MacKinnon: Owned in just 44% of Yahoo fantasy leagues, MacKinnon was the top overall pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft and is already paying dividends to the Avalanche. MacKinnon has been compared to Sidney Crosby by some scouts and if he even a fraction of the career that Crosby has enjoyed then the Avalanche could be pushing a playoff run in the future. MacKinnon is the Ave's third line center right now and he is seeing some power play time. He already has three assists in Colorado's first two games and his vision has been tremendous. MacKinnon has good speed and a quick release that can easily light the lamp. He will be highly sought as the season continues. Pick him up now!

Aleksander Barkov: Owned in just 10% of Yahoo fantasy leagues, Barkov is a big kid with high end offensive skills and a very high ceiling. Barkov might be one of the most forgotten picks out of the 2013 draft. He went 2nd overall to the Florida Panthers and could very well be the best natural scorer of the entire draft class. The big Finnish-Russian forward is 6'3 and 210 pounds. Veteran defenders will have a hard time bumping Barkov off the puck and he has an underrated physical game which makes him a solid two-way forward out of the gate. Barkov is centering the second line with the dangerous Tomas Fleischmann and Tomas Kopecky. He netted his first NHL goal during his NHL debut against the Stars. Barkov has great play making skills and hockey sense. He may not be an elite fantasy option yet but in deeper leagues he will not disappoint.

Right Wing:

Valeri Nichushkin: Owned in just 12% of Yahoo fantasy leagues, Nichushkin had high end offensive talent on the right wing and should make an immediate impact with the Dallas Stars this season. Nichushkin went 10th overall to the Stars in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. He has a massive frame, standing at 6'4 and is a very physical forward. Nichushkin is absolutely lethal with the puck. He has tremendous skating skills and can beat anyone 1-1. His shot is a laser and he has underrated defensive skills. Although he is a russian player which means defense is certainly not going to be his strong suit but he will get the job done. Nichushkin is a player that doesn't play 100% all the time, but when he does, he can be absolutely dominating. Nichushkin is a favorite to win the Calder Trophy and should get every chance to succeed in Dallas. Add this right winger while you can!

Left Wing:

Jaden Schwartz: Owned in just 4% of Yahoo fantasy leagues, Schwartz is playing on the second line for the St. Louis Blues. The second year player will be playing along side the Blues best scorer from last season, Chris Stewart and the bull Patrick Berglund. A line with serious skill and one which should put up points for the Blues this season. Schwartz is a former first round draft pick from the 2010 NHL Entry Draft and accumulated 13 points in 45 games last season It was his first year with the big club and he gained valuable experience. While he is a native centerman, he will be playing on the left wing since the Blues acquired Derek Roy during the off season. Schwartz could definitely be a 10 goal and 20 assist guy this season. He is a valuable additional in deeper leagues.

Goalie:

Jhonas Enroth: Owned in just 4% of Yahoo fantasy leagues, Enroth will get his cracks to prove himself as a number one this season as Ryan Miller will likely be traded at some point soon. Enroth is a 5'10 Swedish goalie who is 21-18-7 with a 2.72 GAA and .914 SV% in his career. He finished last season going 4-1-1 with a 1.55 GAA and .953 SV% in seven starts. He made waves in the 2013 IIHF World Championship, leading his country to a gold medal with a 1.15 GAA and .956 save percentage. Enroth is a solid third goalie option and one to sit on as he will likely become the number one guy this year in Buffalo.

Jonathan Bernier: Owned in just 63% of Yahoo fantasy leagues, Bernier is only 25 years old and is still in his prime as he could get his first chance to be the number one guy in Toronto. There is a goaltending battle going on in Toronto whether their management admits it or not. Toronto fans have grown a bit tired of James Reimer and although he has been improving, they may be quick to pull the plug. Bernier was a solid back up for Jonathan Quick in Los Angeles. He had 14 appearances last season and sported a 1.87 GAA and .922 SV% in that span. Bernier should start every other game in Toronto and may eventually win over the number one spot. He is a solid third option for now if you are short on goaltending depth.



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