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The Wire Troll: Paul Byron and the Rising

March 16, 2014 | by Chris Wassel | Comments Comments Off
Paul Byron is starting to entrench himself on the Calgary Flames.
We like what we’re seeing out of Paul Byron.

This week is a return to normalcy. Yes, we did say that. The schedule plays out like a typical Fantasy hockey week which will be music to many owners and their ears. If you are wondering what the docket looks like for the last week of the regular Fantasy season for most head to head leagues, it looks something like this.

This Week’s Schedule

Here’s a day-by-day breakdown of the games scheduled this week:

  • Monday: four games
  • Tuesday: 12 games
  • Wednesday: four games
  • Thursday: nine games
  • Friday: four games
  • Saturday: 11 games
  • Sunday: seven games

Sunday is a bit elevated as far as the number of games, but that is because the season only has weeks left instead of months. Other than that, it is the usual big Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday which should make it a bit easier on the average Fantasy hockey owner.

This week, we trim our search down a bit. The goal is to give you three quality picks from the waiver wire. One will be from the forward pool, then one each from the defense and goaltenders. The descriptions will be a little more detailed as well. Let’s get down to business.

FORWARD

Paul Byron, C, Calgary Flames: When we take risks, we like to take some big risks. Byron is owned in a less than one tenth of one per cent in Yahoo leagues. He first flashed finishing ability over two years ago (see video below), but we have been watching him more closely for the last few weeks and recently, we liked what we saw. Byron has four points in his last five games, so his ownership rate should rise a little bit. With injuries rising rapidly once again, he is high risk but his elevated ice time makes him at least a little bit sought after. Byron is garnering second line ice time and even significant power play time. This means he is at least a decent add. You could do worse, after all. At this time of the season, when a player has over 15 minutes of ice time for five games or more, he is usually gobbled up because Fantasy owners are desperate.

DEFENSE

Nick Holden, Colorado Avalanche: When looking for certain categories, it is prudent to go deeper down the rabbit hole… err… waiver wire. Holden is available in less than 5 per cent of all Fantasy leagues. In ESPN leagues, that number is a mere 0.6 per cent. However, 17 points in 39 games is solid production from a defenseman no matter how he got those points. Yes, Holden is a bit sheltered with zone starts and pairings, but in Coach Patrick Roy’s system, a guy with some offensive talent can flourish. Will it continue? It seems there are enough points to go around in Colorado.

GOALIE

James Reimer, Toronto Maple Leafs: With the injury to Jonathan Bernier, Reimer is a guy to pick up until the Leafs’ No. 1 netminder mends. Do not look at Reimer’s high goals against average and below average save percentage. After all, a Fantasy owner would just be looking at this as a short-term pick. For all we know, Reimer may only play two or three games at the most. However, sometimes at this time of the season, patching a lineup is the best way to go. Reimer won’t be at a 25-to-30 per cent ownership rate after the weekend.

Please understand again that this is a full week with normal transaction limits in leagues and a normal schedule. The last week featured some very unexpected results and this week is likely to be more of the same. Good luck!

Now it’s your turn. Let us know in the comments below who your favourite Fantasy hockey waiver wire pick of the week is.

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The Wire Troll: Alex Killorn Moving On Up

March 9, 2014 | by Chris Wassel | Comments Comments Off
It is a rare case when there is a double nine on the weekend. What is a double nine? Simply, it’s when Sunday means as much as Saturday. This was a phrase we coined about 15 years ago when we used it to win a Fantasy hockey league on the last day because we checked schedules well in advance. Believe us, when we say it pays off.
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The Wire Troll: Zemgus Girgensons Trending Up

March 2, 2014 | by Chris Wassel | Comments (0)
Week 21 features, for one, a full week. It has been awhile, hasn’t it? When scouring through the waiver wire, the pickings are definitely more slim. For head-to-head leagues, there are only a couple more weeks left before the playoffs begin. Even rotisserie owners are feeling the pinch as March roars in. In our search for this week’s picks, we dug a little deeper than usual. There may be more questions than usual.
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The Wire Troll: Teemu Selanne Can Still Do it

February 23, 2014 | by Chris Wassel | Comments (0)
If it feels like we have been gone for a few weeks, it is because the NHL version of The Wire Troll has been in a “Sochi slumber.” With the Olympics over, it’s time to look ahead at Week 20 in your Fantasy hockey leagues. Who are the players that could see a bit of a Fantasy boost?
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The Wire Troll: Kris Russell Providing Sneaky Value

January 26, 2014 | by Chris Wassel | Comments (0)
Week 19 is technically a short week as the Olympic break starts on February 9, but we are getting a bit ahead of ourselves. This is our final episode of The Wire Troll until the end of February. Do not worry as we will be on Twitter plenty to answer questions and offer potential waiver wire moves during the shorter week.
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