NHL Fantasy Mailbag: Assessing Duchene’s post-deadline value

Matt Duchene carries the puck against the Columbus Blue Jackets. (Paul Vernon/AP)

Something tells me that Columbus Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella isn’t very fond of the lead-up to the NHL trade deadline. You wonder if Artemi Panarin will be offered a lifetime supply of Pepto Bismol to re-up long-term in Columbus.

Fantasy or not, it’s a pretty important time in the season.

Don’t wait too long to move on the trade market. Most deadlines are fast approaching and you don’t want to be left out in the cold. That one final move could put you over the top.

As Monday’s 3:00 p.m. ET deadline draws closer, it’ll be intriguing to see what actually happens. Who will stay? Who will go? And most importantly, what will be the fantasy fallout? Only time will tell.

I’d give it at least a week before electing to dress new acquisitions in the Sportsnet Fantasy Hockey Pool. It’s fair to expect a transition period for these players to get acclimated to their new surroundings.

Now to your questions:

Brett Chandler – @chands28
What’s a fair expectation when it comes to Matt Duchene’s post-deadline fantasy value?

It looks like Duchene is as good as done in Ottawa. He was held out of the lineup on Thursday night for precautionary reasons.

It’ll be interesting to see where he lands. Considering the list of rumoured suitors, it’s likely that the Haliburton, Ont., native lands in a second-line centre role.

It’s fair to expect a moderate dip in ice time from the 19:15 he’s been averaging with Ottawa this season. On a contender, he’ll likely play five-on-five with second-tier wingers. That said, Duchene will get plenty of power-play time. In the fantasy world, that’s all matters.

Here are some possible trade fits:

Nashville Predators (Kevin Fiala, Duchene, Craig Smith)

Winnipeg Jets (Patrik Laine, Duchene, Bryan Little)

Columbus Blue Jackets (Nick Foligno, Duchene, Josh Anderson)

New York Islanders (Brock Nelson, Duchene, Jordan Eberle)

Gary Gambin – @garygambin
I own Ryan Getzlaf, Rickard Rakell and Patric Hornqvist. Will they turn things around? What should I do with them?

Of the three players mentioned, I’d drop Hornqvist with minimal hesitation. Simply put, you can find better value on the waiver wire right now.

Dependent on your league settings of course, Hornqvist’s style has never really translated well to the standard fantasy game. Additionally, he gets banged up quite a bit and Penguins bench boss Mike Sullivan likes to scramble Pittsburgh’s lines way too much for my liking.

As for the Ducks, they’ve showed legitimate signs of life since general manager Bob Murray took over behind the bench. They’re 3-1-0, outshooting their opponents in three of those four contests.

As I wrote in last week’s 20 Thoughts, it’s a great time to buy low on Anaheim files. I’d hold onto the likes of Getzlaf and Rakell.

Be patient.

Jon Stycuk – @Stycuk
Points league (KEEPER) – would you trade Leon Draisaitl, Jaccob Slavin and an 11th round pick to acquire Taylor Hall, Tyson Barrie and a 3rd round pick? (I’m currently in first place)

The uncertainty of Hall’s availability for the rest of this season coupled with your current place holding in the standings makes it an easy decline for me. If healthy, you’d win this going away.

Long-term, I like both Hall and Barrie as fantasy stocks next season. Unless something happens in the off-season, both will be entering ‘walk’ years with boat loads of money on the mind. Contract motivation is a beautiful thing. Just ask Duchene, Mark Stone and Kevin Hayes.

Stay the course. It’s all about the present for you and not the future.

Play the Sportsnet Fantasy Hockey Pool for your chance to win the ultimate grand prize: an all-new 2019 RAM 1500!

Kvoy – @kvoy8
Would you trade Aleksander Barkov for Patrik Laine in a basic scoring league? Non-keeper settings.

At this pivotal juncture in the fantasy season, the last thing you want on your roster is a potential liability and/or anchor. With four goals since November, Laine fits that bill perfectly. Unbelievably, he’s currently mired in a 15-game goal-scoring drought. There’s no time for patience here.

I’ll preface by saying that I’m a huge Laine guy. That said, winning is more important to me. I’d take the deal.

Barkov is red-hot offensively. The Panthers captain has six goals and 10 assists for 16 points over his last 11 outings. Considering Florida always seems to finish strong, don’t expect the production to subside.

Consistency over potential for me.

Brandon F. – @Brandon_73
With Philadelphia acquiring Cam Talbot, would it be safe to say that Carter Hart will get the bulk of the starts? Or, would it be smart to grab Cam Talbot?

For the first time in his young NHL career, Hart is finally dealing with some scrutiny after a blazing start. The 20-year-old has surrendered six goals on the last 18 shots and has been pulled in back-to-back starts.

As things sit today, the Flyers are seven points out of a playoff spot with just 21 games remaining. There’s no question that Hart is the No. 1 but the more Philadelphia falls out of the playoff picture, I wonder if they’ll give Talbot a strong look. After all, the Flyers must use the remaining time to figure out if the 31-year-old is a good fit to pair with Hart.

If the losses start to pile up, go secure Talbot.

Vinny A. – @VinnyA15
Do you think it’s worth shopping Nathan MacKinnon? What do you think is a fair return for such a player?

As a fantasy general manager, I think you have to be open to anything. If that includes potentially dealing one of this season’s most dynamic fantasy players – then, so be it.

Considering MacKinnon’s top-10 stock, there are three main factors to keep in mind when mulling over potential trade packages:

1. What are your team needs? Check out the head-to-head stats function in Yahoo! to see where your team stands compared to others. Identify your weaknesses and go from there.

2. Where are you located in the standings? If you’re in desperate need to make a move, the motivation will be there to make it happen.

3. Does it make your team significantly better? Easier said than done, win the trade. Often, owners will overpay to acquire high-end talent. Drive up the price.

In terms of a package, I’d look to spread the wealth. By that, I mean maximizing as much category coverage as you can. In a perfect world, a top-25 ranked forward and an elite upgrade on the back end would be my asking price.

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