Fantasy Take: Chiarot Traded to Florida

Michael Clifford

2022-03-16

One of the big trade chips that the Montreal Canadiens had to offer – other than Tyler Toffoli, apparently – was defenceman Ben Chiarot. Notice that we said "was" and that's because the Florida Panthers bolstered their blue line for the upcoming playoff run by trading for the pending free agent, just hours after trading away forward Frank Vatrano. The deal is as follows:

Let's break it down.

What Florida gets

From a fantasy perspective, it's hard to imagine Ben Chiarot having more fantasy value than he does now. He was good for about two hits and 1.8 blocks per game while skating well over 23 minutes a night for Montreal. His point pace works out to about 27 in 82 games, which is just fine if he can push 170 hits and 140 blocks in a season. The question, then, is how he will be used. He certainly won't be on the top pair, so we can forget about 23-24 minutes a night. But there are 21 minutes a night available if he takes Gustav Forsling's spot on the second pair, and that's where things get interesting.

Chiarot is not a good puck mover, either by the eye test or any number of statistics. He also tends to back off the blue line, preferring to grind out the game along the boards or in front of the net. That doesn't really seem to play into Florida's strengths, so he's not a lock to play 21 minutes a night for this team.

Quite simply, whatever increase in point production is likely meagre while there could be a peripheral drop with his loss in ice time. The difference between the second pair and the third pair is the difference between a roster spot in most multi-cat leagues and a roster spot in the deepest of multi-cat league