3 up, 3 down: Max Pacioretty finally producing as expected

Travis Konecny scored in overtime and the Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Washington Capitals.

Welcome to the fantasy hockey stock market. Each week we will look at three players trending up and three players trending down.

Three Up

Travis Konecny – C/W – Flyers – 7 Goals, 12 Assists, 86 Shots, 46 Games

The Flyers haven’t gotten much secondary scoring, which includes what has been a disappointing effort from the sophomore Konecny. However, they have been able to jump start struggling players by bumping them up to the top line with Claude Giroux and Sean Couturier.

Konecny is the latest forward to get that treatment, scoring four goals and 10 points in 11 games since Christmas. You probably can’t count on Konecny to produce for the entire second half, particularly because he is not skating on the top power-play unit, but he should be relevant as long as he is hooked up to the Giroux/Couturier battery.

Evgenii Dadonov – RW – Panthers – 10 Goals, 19 Assists, 92 Shots, 37 Games

It has been a rollercoaster ride for Dadonov fantasy owners.

He started hot, got banged up and demoted, but is now back on the top line and riding a six-game scoring streak. His injuries will prevent him from hitting 60 points, but his 82-game pace would have him crest that plateau. As long as Dadonov is playing with Aleksander Barkov and Jonathan Huberdeau he’ll have universal relevance.

Max Pacioretty – LW – Canadiens – 15 Goals, 14 Assists, 178 Shots, 47 Games

A brutal first half has left fantasy owners sour on the Canadiens’ captain, but he is finally producing like the top-50 fantasy option he was drafted to be.

With seven goals in the last seven games we are seeing just how hot a talented goal-scorer of his ilk can get. Only Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Vladimir Tarasenko have more goals over the past five seasons than the perennial 30-goal scorer. While Pacioretty is off that pace, you should bet on a strong second half push towards another 30-goal season.

Three Down

Brandon Montour – D – Ducks – 6 Goals, 14 Assists, 97 Shots, 45 Games

The dynamic defenceman has fallen off now that the Ducks have their full complement of defenceman. His power-play time has slipped to secondary use and his overall ice time is down below 15 minutes per game.

Montour has just one point in the last 10 games. He has the potential to produce if injuries crop up again, particularly to Cam Fowler. Without an injury he’ll continue his downward slide towards fantasy waiver wires.

Evander Kane – LW – Sabres – 16 Goals, 20 Assists, 186 Shots, 46 Games

After a killer start Kane has slowed down, scoring just three points in nine games since Christmas. He has been moved off the Sabres’ top power-play unit, one that has started to find their footing.

Of course, Kane’s situation could drastically change in the coming weeks. He is one of the top trade targets ahead of the trade deadline. However, there’s no guarantee that Kane’s opportunity will improve with a trade. While he’ll certainly land on a more talented team, it could come at the expense of minutes.

Kane is one of the top forward skaters in terms of minutes skating over 19 minutes per game. A loaded team seeking forward depth might limit Kane to 15 minutes per game, which would take a bite out of his scoring and his multi-category production.

Patrick Marleau – C/LW – Maple Leafs – 15 Goals, 9 Assists, 120 Shots, 48 Games

The Leafs’ high-flying offence has gone sideways and Marleau has been one of the largest victims. Marleau was scoring at a 50-point pace for much of the season, but has fallen off entirely in January going scoreless in eight games.

Marleau is still offering strong shot volume, which may be enough to help you ride out this scoreless streak. However, his most frequent linemates (Leo Komarov and Nazem Kadri) are slumping as well. This line has been heavily focused on matching up against the opposition’s best, limiting their offensive output.

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Steve Laidlaw is the Managing Editor of DobberHockey. Follow him on Twitter @SteveLaidlaw.

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