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The Wire Troll: Norman Powell Taking Toronto By Storm

The Wire Troll: Matt Beleskey – the Working Man’s Bruin

February 28, 2016 | by Dakota Case | Comments Comments Off
Ryan Callahan is logging points for the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Ryan Callahan’s recent hot play has the Lightning surging up the standings. (Reddit.com)

We’ve come to that time of the season when NHL general managers have to decide whether they’re buyers or sellers. With the 2016 NHL Trade Deadline set for early Monday afternoon, many have already hit the ground running.

The buyers are led by Stan Bowman’s Chicago Blackhawks, who have managed to add former Chicago Cup-winner Andrew Ladd from Winnipeg, Dale Weise and Tomas Fleischmann from Montreal, and Christian Ehrhoff from Los Angeles all within the past 72 hours. The Blackhawks are banking on their fourth Cup in seven years, which they’ll certainly look back in fondness upon once they eventually hit rock bottom when the reality of the cost — numerous first and second round picks and top prospects — kicks in five or six years from now. The ball is now in every other buyer’s court to keep up with the defending champs.

For the sellers, the price has been set by Winnipeg in the Ladd deal, making Boston’s Loui Eriksson the next big rental prize — if the Bruins don’t re-sign him first. Pacing this group is Toronto, who will soon own a fifth of all draft picks and zero roster players if it’s not careful. Montreal, Edmonton and Carolina could all pack it in soon, as well.

Consider this your early Fantasy Tip of the Week: A change of scenery and an upgrade in linemates could do wonders for these players on your Fantasy team. If any are available on your league’s waiver wire, you might consider taking a chance on one.

Let’s get to this week’s picks.

Matt Beleskey, LW, Boston Bruins (ESPN: 43.9 per cent; CBS: 39 per cent): A sturdy grinding power forward, Beleskey has made our list a few times this season, and with good reason. In 60 games played, the Bruins winger has 13 goals, 32 points, a plus-16 rating, 48 penalty minutes and 119 shots on goal, including five goals, six points, a plus-7 rating, a power play goal, 17 shots on goal, 22 hits and four blocked shots in his past eight games. He’s doing it all, minus goaltending, of course.

Ryan Callahan, RW, Tampa Bay Lightning (ESPN: 45 per cent; CBS: 46 per cent): More of a “meat and potatoes” player, Callahan has been tearing it up in recent times, collecting three goals, eight points, a plus-5 rating, two penalty minutes, 17 shots on goal, 16 hits and five blocks in his past eight games. Still, he has just eight goals, 25 points and a minus-1 rating through 60 games this season. Buy with caution, but take solace in the fact he gives good quote (see video below).

Jannik Hansen, RW, Vancouver Canucks (ESPN: 16.4 per cent; CBS: 33 per cent): Vancouver is one of all seven Canadian teams on the outside of the playoff picture, looking in at the moment. Don’t tell that to Hansen. The 29-year-old has been one of the few brighter spots for the club with 19 goals, 32 points, a very solid plus-19 rating and 100 shots on goal in 56 games. He has three goals, five points, a plus-3 rating, four penalty minutes, nine shots on goal, four hits and a block in his past six games.

Kevin Connauton, D, Arizona Coyotes (ESPN: 8.9 per cent; CBS: 6 per cent): The Coyotes are fighting for their playoff lives after losing out on the “McEichel Sweepstakes” last June. There’s still a chance, but it’s slim. Fortunately, they’ve got some studs on the back end, including Connauton, who has three goals, six points, a plus-5 rating, four penalty minutes, 18 shots on goal, 16 hits and 10 blocks in his past eight games. Typically a stay-at-home defender, the Edmonton native has four goals, 14 points, a plus-10 rating and 70 shots on goal in 44 games this season while averaging 15:41 of ice-time.

Brooks Orpik, D, Washington Capitals (ESPN: 1.7 per cent; CBS: 11 per cent): Unlike Connauton, Orpik’s playoff hopes are alive, well and practically guaranteed at this point. Definitely a defensive rear guard, the Caps defender has come alive offensively the past few weeks, notching two goals, six points, a plus-6 rating, two penalty minutes, five shots on goal, 23 hits and 16 blocks in his past six games. Averaging 19:13, Orpik has three goals, nine points, a plus-5 rating, 20 penalty minutes and 17 shots on goal. It’s not all that impressive until you realize he’s done all of it in just 20 games this season.

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: Shelvin Mack Playing Jazzy in Utah

February 27, 2016 | by Adrian Wallace | Comments Comments Off
Bogdanovic poured in a season-high 24 points to go along with two boards in 38 minutes on Thursday as the Nets claimed a win over the Suns. The second-year pro is expected to contribute beyond just scoring categories, and will have a better opportunity to do so with Johnson being released. Bogdanovic’s new starting role could turn out to be quite rewarding, so make a claim on him pronto.
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The Wire Troll: Charlie Coyle Powers Surging Wild

February 21, 2016 | by Dakota Case | Comments Comments Off
Eaves hasn’t been a big Fantasy contributor in his career or even this season, but he’s had a big string of success in recent games that should at least command part of your attention. In his past seven contests, the Dallas winger has managed to collect four goals (three coming on a hat trick), seven points, a minus-1 rating, two penalty minutes, three power play goals, 15 shots on goal, 14 hits and a blocked shot. It’s impressive, but Eaves still only has seven goals, 12 points and 61 shots on goal in 39 games played this season.
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The Wire Troll: Mirza Teletovic Has Hot Hand in Phoenix

February 20, 2016 | by Adrian Wallace | Comments Comments Off
Mirza has been a devoted scorer in Phoenix — leading the way with a team-high 25 points to go along with eight rebounds and a couple of assists Friday against the Rockets.
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The Wire Troll: Matt Dumba Shining for Dismal Wild

February 14, 2016 | by Dakota Case | Comments Comments Off
In the past six games, Dumba has two goals, six points, a minus-1 rating, two penalty minutes, two power play goals, 19 shots on goal, eight hits and four blocked shots. With a change in coaching staff, the former seventh overall pick could see an expanded role in all game situations, making him even more valuable to Fantasy GMs.
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