NHL Fantasy Mailbag: The value of patience on the trade market


St. Louis Blues' Jaden Schwartz, right, is congratulated by Vladimir Tarasenko, left, after scoring a goal. (Jeff Roberson/AP)

It was another historic week in the NHL world as Seattle was officially introduced as the league’s 32nd franchise, beginning play in the fall of 2021.

It’s so fascinating on a fantasy level considering another expansion draft is ahead. Who will be kept? What protection deals will be made? Questions for three years from now, of course.

It was surreal to see Vegas rip through the NHL the way they did last season. After all, most of their games included a player squaring off against a team that had left them unprotected. I call it the ‘revenge factor.’

That coincides perfectly with my Sportsnet Fantasy Hockey Pool tip of the week. Don’t be afraid to dress a player who has a matchup against their former team on the upcoming schedule. Never underestimate the power of wanting to gain retribution.

Now to your questions:

Das Siegfried (@DasSiegfried): I own Vladimir Tarasenko and I’ve been offered Ryan Getzlaf one-for-one in a trade. Should I take the deal?

Trust me, you’re not the only one holding out hope that Tarasenko will return to form. The Blues, in general, have been a difficult team to dissect so far. What are they? Time will hopefully tell.

When it comes to that specific trade offer, I’d decline and aim higher. While Getzlaf has eight goals already, he’s never really been looked at as the total package when it comes to fantasy hockey.

While Getzlaf is known mostly for his playmaking abilities, Tarasenko’s offensive track record speaks for itself. He’s potted four consecutive 30-plus-goal seasons. That consistency leads to me to believe that he’ll catch fire eventually.

Unless you get blown away with an offer, keep Tarasenko.

Juno (@junotheleafs): What’s the word with Jeff Petry? What should I do with him?

With Shea Weber back in the fold, I’d look to move Petry for an upgrade. Perhaps his two-point performance on Thursday night in Ottawa will help with that conquest.

The veteran did a great job filling in for Weber while he was out. That being said, Petry will likely fall back into more of a defensive/secondary role now. He’ll still eat up a lot of minutes but it’s fair to expect a dip in production.

You can probably find some decent value on the waiver wire.

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Rob Mitt (@bibbobolypse): J.T. Miller’s ice time has been dropping significantly recently. Would you “wait it out?” Or, should I sell?

This is a tricky situation.

One minute Miller’s on the fourth line and the other, he’s playing with the big boys. Miller has struggled with consistency so far this season.

Truthfully, you’re not getting much on the trade market so you’re better off sitting tight. Even with the ‘rough’ start, Miller is still on pace for 15-20 goals and 55-60 points. I’ll take that type of production.

The important thing going for you: Tampa scores a lot.

Chris Winchester (@winny567): I just traded Tyler Seguin for Jack Eichel straight up. In your opinion, is there a winner or loser in this trade?

I’d wager that Eichel finishes with more points and the higher fantasy ranking by season’s end. I’m feeling this torrid start for the Buffalo Sabres and still to come is a goal-scoring tear for Eichel.

In fact, both Eichel and Seguin have been firing at less-than-league average when it comes to shooting percentage. That will change.

Good deal.

Hoffman (@Rhoffman85): I’m growing impatient with the Martin Jones and Aaron Dell tandem. Should I be patient or look elsewhere for steady goaltending?

Keep your patience. I think the Sharks will eventually round into form. They’re just too talented to continue this inconsistent play.

When teams start to figure it out, the first thing that you usually improves first is the defensive play. It’s fair to say Jones and Dell haven’t been great but I’d pin some of the issues on team defence too.

I still consider San Jose to be a perennial contender for the Stanley Cup this season. Sit tight.

Andrew Harrison (@harryphlyers): Stolarz or Elliott or Neuvirth or Lyon?

In the short-term, and assuming full health, Brian Elliott will be the number-one goalie. He’s actually having a decent season (2.59 goals-against average, .911 save percentage). Unfortunately, he just can’t stay healthy.

It’ll be interesting to see what new Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher does. Philadelphia needs a better gap goalie to lead into the Carter Hart era. It’s imperative they let that kid develop in the AHL.

I’d go with Elliott and Stolarz for the time being.

Peter Buchanan (@PM_Buchanan): Don’t get me wrong, Tom Wilson has been a fantasy stud thus far. Is he worth the risk of owning long-term considering his suspension history?

Interesting question.

Given the track record and small sample size of elite production, I’d throw his name out there on the trade market pronto. The thing with Wilson is that he’s only really fantasy relevant when he’s on Washington’s top line.

Monster looming suspension aside, I think you deal him in a heartbeat if you can acquire something legitimate in return. Try it.

Senior Writer Ryan Dixon and NHL Editor Rory Boylen always give it 110%, but never rely on clichés when it comes to podcasting. Instead, they use a mix of facts, fun and a varied group of hockey voices to cover Canada’s most beloved game.

Jason Elkins (@RedsealNinja): Would you trade Evgeny Kuznetsov and Tom Wilson for Logan Couture and Nikita Kucherov? (10-team straight points)

Without hesitation, you make this transaction every day of the week and twice on Sunday.

Whenever you make a deal, it’s important to note which team is obtaining the best fantasy player. In this scenario, Nikita Kucherov is that player.

I love Kuznetsov and there’s always a risk with owning Wilson. A fair expectation for Couture is 30 and 30. Meantime, Kucherov has been dynamite again and is already approaching the 50-point mark.

I hope this deal is still on the table for you. It’s veto-worthy, truthfully.

Ryan Miller (@R_Millz_5): Which newly traded player could be worth a roster add?

Of everyone dealt so far, Arizona’s Nick Schmaltz intrigues me the most. The 22-year-old is off to a hot start in the desert (five games played: two goals, three assists, five points) playing on the top line with Alex Galchenyuk and Clayton Keller. (Current Yahoo! ownership: 20 per cent)

Here are the important factors:
– Dual-position eligibility (C, LW)
– Top-line deployment
– Coming off a 21-goal, 52-point season
– Contract year (RFA)

Kris Brown (@KBROWN3194): I own Erik Karlsson and Mikhail Sergachev — both of whom have had slow starts this season. What should I do? What value you think they have on the trade market?

It’s a yearly struggle for fantasy owners to find consistent production from their back end. This year — clearly — is no different.

When it comes to Karlsson, I will continue to give him the benefit of the doubt. At some point, he’s going to break out and produce at a rate similar to years past. To what extent, I don’t know. I’d be very cautious when trying to move him right now because I just don’t think you’ll get proper value.

When it comes to Sergachev, it’s an unfortunate reality that there are significant defenders ahead of him in the pecking order in Tampa — Victor Hedman and Ryan McDonagh being the notable ones.

The 20-year-old Sergachev is currently averaging 17:47 a night skating on the third pairing while quarterbacking the second power-play unit.

Keep Karlsson and upgrade on Sergachev.

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