Ramblings: Dahlin’s Breakout, Mining the Wire, Trading Hellebuyck, Cozens & Schmidt (Jan 6)

Cam Robinson

2021-01-05

Things are certainly cooking now. We're a couple of days into all 31 teams' training camps. Everyone and their dog is either in the best shape of their life or stuck in some sort of quarantine purgatory. Either way, it’s exciting for all involved. Okay, maybe not for the guys stuck in their hotel room, but for the rest of us it sure is! 

We're sure to see storylines galore as the camps move forward and intrasquad games fire up. Players will be cut. Others will make the team's taxi squad in hopes of eeking out some NHL action when the bandaids begin to pile up and the IR fills up.

This leads me to my first point: Depth.

NHL teams will be bringing along expanded rosters and the aforementioned taxi squads because of quarantine rules but also because of the intimidating prospect of a condensed schedule. There will be injuries. A lot of them. As a fantasy manager, this year more than ever will demand your focus on depth players if your roster allows for it. Targeting second-line wingers who could step into a bigger role. Sheltered offensive defenders without a clear role. Goaltenders of all shapes and sizes as the tandem mode will be heavily used.

The next crucial step will be: Quickness

Having your finger on the pulse of all the movement this year will allow you to be decisive and fast-acting on the waiver wire. As I said, the injuries will pile up and oft-overlooked players will suddenly have a prominent offensive role – even if for just a week or two. This is where you can make hay. Ensure you have a roster spot or three dedicated to quick turnover and work that wire like it's the gift-giving siren that she is.



**

Okay, so I just want to quickly remind everyone that it is Rasmus Dahlin breakout season. In my mind, the 20-year-old is ready to absolutely POP.

Sure, he produced the most points as an 18-year-old defenseman since Phil Housely nearly 40 years earlier. And sure, he played a 56-point pace as a 19-year-old last season – something we haven't seen since… well since Phil Housey went off as a 19-year-old.

Yet, Dahlin remains something of an overlooked fantasy asset in the shadow of Cale Makar, Quinn Hughes and even Miro Heiskanen. This is predominately due to two things: