Ramblings: Werenski is a Dreamboat, Kucherov vs. Hall, Pulock Hurt (Oct 22)

steve laidlaw


Drooling over Werenski, contrasting Kucherov and Hall, Pulock's missed chance and more.


Werenski island is filling up but there’s still time to buy property. He is 26% owned on Yahoo and 20.3% on ESPN. I’m not sure what else he has to do to get picked up. Werenski has the pedigree, the hype, the talent, the opportunity and now the production. He has two goals, four points and 14 SOG in just three games. There’s a non-zero chance he gets to 50 points this season. But even if he doesn’t he should put up enough shots to remain fantasy relevant. I’m assuming that I am preaching to the choir and that you’ve all jumped on board with Werenski by now but if not, do so now! Stop reading, I’ll wait. Open a new tab or your fantasy app and make the move. There has to be someone worth dumping on the end of your roster.

In one of my leagues, I went as far as grabbing Werenski as my fifth defenseman, even though we only start four. This runs counter to my philosophy but the value on Werenski is too good. I’ll look to make a trade at some point to get myself back down to four but I don’t necessarily have to. The reason I don’t roll with an extra defenseman is because fantasy relevant defensemen are such a scarce resource.

I want my defenders to be capable of hitting 50 points, or to put up enough peripherals (200+ shots or 90+ PIM) to be worth having in the roster on a nightly basis. Finding five defensemen with that capability in a draft is rare so I’ll usually put my bench slots towards a forward. But if I can find five defensemen who meet my standards I will find a way to use them.

Alexander Wennberg is lingering as another interesting option on the Blue Jackets but I’m not as high on him relative to his position (center) as I am regarding Werenski on defense.

The Blue Jackets sent Oliver Bjorkstrand to the minors and called up Sonny Milano. Bjorkstrand is a far more enticing prospect but he needed to produce to stick around, especially since he was seeing top-six minutes and top PP duties.

Will Milano step into Bjorkstrand’s spot? That remains to be seen. Tortorella made a point of using Bjorkstrand in an offensive role so he could do the same with Milano but he has had Brandon Saad languishing on the third line and second PP unit. Saad was in Bjorkstrand’s spot alongside Wennberg last night, so I’m jumping on board with Saad here.

Last bit of CBJ business, Ryan Murray is out with an upper-body injury. No timeline yet but he is expected to miss time. No real fantasy impact but it will make the Blue Jackets worse.