The Washington Capitals have acquired defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk and goaltender Pheonix Copley from the St. Louis Blues for Zach Sanford, Brad Malone, Washington’s first rounder in 2017 plus a conditional pick in 2019.
The Caps get: one of the best offensive defensemen in the game. Shattenkirk is an upgrade offensively to John Carlson (who is very good, himself), Matt Niskanen (who isn’t half bad) and Dmitry Orlov (who has intriguing potential, but is not there yet). Having a player like Shattenkirk feeding the puck to Alexander Ovechkin is borderline-scary.
The Blues get: some great assets for a player they were losing in five months. The first-round pick is in a weak draft class, but that doesn’t mean you kick it out of your bed for eating crackers. Sanford is a solid two-way prospect and possible future third-liner, though the Blues are a tough lineup to crack.
Get our scouting report and outlook on prospects Sanford and Copley here and here!
Fantasy Players Impacted: Shattenkirk should see a real nice bump here, which is saying a lot because he’s already been a productive defenseman. But there is another gear and he’s now going to reach it. His arrival should help a sniper like Ovechkin the most, with supplemental points trickling down through the lineup. Obviously the key power-play guys get the most from that.
The other big one here is Colton Parayko, who achieved the majority of his impressive production last year during Shattenkirk’s injury absence. Now that Shattenkirk is absent-absent, Parayko owners will cash in. That’s a heck of a lot of PP time that has just been freed up. Alex Pietrangelo will kick things up a notch. He’s been a 40-point player of late, but should be back to his 50-point ways going forward.
On the negative side of things, Dmitry Orlov and Matt Niskanen will take a real big hit here. Particularly Niskanen, who now finds himself third on the pecking order of power-play right-handed shooters behind Shattenkirk and Carlson. And the Blues' offensive guns such as Vladimir Tarasenko, Jaden Schwartz and Alex Steen will take a small hit here due to the slight decline in PP specialist talent. Quick comment on Carlson – he has only seen about 59.5% of the available PP time this season. Shattenkirk will eat into that and knock it down to 45%. But Carlson was only looking at another five or six PP points going forward anyway. So maybe that’s, what…four now? So he loses two points. Not devastating.
Fantasy Players this helps, in order:
Fantasy Players this hurts, in order:
3. Tarasenko, Steen and Schwartz
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