Tough break, literally, for Montreal Canadiens winger Brendan Gallagher. Gallagher was well on his way to setting new career highs in virtually every category until he suffered two broken fingers while blocking a shot against the Islanders. What do you do with the winger? Drop him? No. Pick him up? Yes. Stash him on the IR? Yes. Read on for that and more fantasy hockey transaction trends.
Brendan Gallagher – RW – Montreal Canadiens
This is more of a “if anyone dropped Gallagher, immediately go and pick him up” kind of circumstance. Anyways, Gallagher has been the grittiest player for the Canadiens this season. Second on the team among forwards for blocked shots and that’s exactly the reason why he’s sidelined for at least the next six weeks (Gallagher Out). Up until his injury, Gallagher had 9 goals and 10 assists for a total of 19 points – good for second on the team. Gallagher is an important cog in the Canadiens offence and shouldn’t be dropped. If you have an IR roster spot in your league and number 11 is out there, go ahead and pick him up.
Boone Jenner – C/RW – Columbus Blue Jackets
In his third season in the NHL, Jenner seems to have found his stride. He’s found a home on the top line with Ryan Johansen and Brandon Saad as well as spending some time on the first power play unit. Jenner is tied for fifth in the NHL in goals (11) and is on track to surpass his career high (16g in 72 games – 2013/14). Jenner has made a lasting impression on John Tortorella and everyone knows it’s important to stay on his good side. (Skip to 14 seconds and enjoy. NSFW (Language): Classic Torts)
Karri Ramo – G – Calgary Flames
Ramo is clear number one goaltender out in Calgary. He’s won three of his last four outings while sporting a 2.00 GAA. Those matches have been against tough company for the most part (two games against Chicago, one against Washington). Ramo opened the season as the number one option, got sent to the minors, then had a “heart-to-heart” with head coach Bob Hartley. Whatever was said during that heart to heart has been working wonders for the 29 year old Fin. Jump on Ramo while he’s hot.
Nikolaj Ehlers – LW/RW – Winnipeg Jets
After picking up 7 points in his first 10 games, Ehlers has been extremely ineffective since. He has no goals since October 27th and has only notched two assists in his last nine matches. He was previously playing on the second line while getting steady powerplay time. He’s been dropped to the third line and has only been on the ice for an average of 12:35. While it may be tempting to hold onto a rookie with so much promise – it’s time to cut ties with Ehlers.
Nail Yakupov – LW/RW – Edmonton Oilers
Things looked so good for Yakupov earlier this season. So. Good. He was finally looking like he was worthy of the Oilers first overall pick in 2012. When Connor McDavid went down, so did Nail Yakupov (metaphorically speaking). Yakupov has only recorded a single assist in the 8 games since McDavid was injured. His ice time has gone down significantly while also being bumped all the way down to the third line. Yakupov can easily be your next dropped player for someone off the wire.
Keep An Eye Open For…
Nazem Kadri – C – Toronto Maple Leafs
Nazem Kadri has the worst puck luck in the NHL. He’s fifth in shots (87) but he’s just not finding the back of the net. With only two goals and six assists on the year, he doesn’t really warrant an add… yet. The opportunity is there for Kadri. Steady ice time on the first line while playing valuable powerplay minutes usually adds up to a valuable fantasy asset. Kadri has seen his face-off percentage go up as well (2015/16 – 50.7% | 2014/15 – 46.2%). If he can start lighting the lamp, he’ll be well worth the add.
Thanks for reading! If you have any fantasy questions feel free to reach out to me (@BESTofMATT).
*Percentage owned & position eligibility based off of Yahoo! Fantasy.