I’m all for streaming one or two spots on my roster(s) full time all season to 1) maximize roster slots in a match and 2) prepare myself extensively for postseason do or die player drops. If a depth option isn’t working for me early on I see no issue swapping out for another name in hopes of a change of fortunes. Shea Weber is taking vacation on my IR, so a defender is needed in the long term, therefore some options are listed here for the defensive position. Do not be afraid to stream a couple spots on your squad's, many owners hesitant to do so especially early on, giving you an opportunity for statistical advantage. While the following don’t seem destine to produce like Sidney Crosby, they’d potentially make for nice depth at no cost to you.
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Most certainly forgotten about at many draft tables, Marcus Johansson is back looking to make up lost time after an oft-injured 2017-18. Guaranteed in a legitimate top six offense with the New Jersey Devils, the 27-year old Swede should make for a great secondary scoring option if you feel the need to bolster your team. Over the course of seven seasons with the Washington Capitals, Johansson had plenty of time to soak up knowledge and in-game play from fellow Swede Nicklas Backstrom. His last year in D.C.’s Chinatown neighborhood saw him post 24 goals and 34 assists, many times by no means a product of the more prominent names around him were those points created. He entered a new level of skill that year and many times could be confused for Backstrom himself dominating game play. Despite last season’s string of injuries, he is worth a waiver based on skill and past production alone. Johansson also finds himself in a contract year folks, always that motivation to shine, ask John Carlson.
Yup, the team is destitute of skill, but Chabot is an exciting young defender who has to be given the reins. A lost year before it starts though after the Las Vegas Golden Knights inaugural run I’m up for anything, the Ottawa Senators just need to wear shirts that say, “Let the Boys Play”. Disregard plus minus completely and throw the speedy Chabot out there. His speed is what the game thrives on with this kid having all the tools to be a quality all around minute munching defender. It’s literally him or Chris Wideman quarterbacking a power play with Matt Duchene and Mark Stone, my money is on Chabot getting the top spot either from the start or rather soon. As I said if you are rostering Chabot you are disregarding plus minus completely. The potential depth points from the young kid are worth the minus rating. He had 25 points at 21 years of age, showed he can play first pair minutes with Karlsson out, and has a rocket, take a flyer on the St. John Sea Dog.
These two young Bruins forwards will seemingly juggle time with David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk making for a speculative addition. Either is talented in their own right, Donato the flashier, Heinen the two-way style, they can hold their own with the aforementioned. It’s about who cements themselves in that potent top six that becomes the greater asset. If one of either is available on the wire you could do worse than to add pieces from a top offense across the league. Heinen enters his sophomore campaign after posting 47 points in 77 games played. A respectable 0.61 pts/gm last year, the Langley native would make for solid secondary scoring if he produces at a similar rate. Shooting 11.9% overall last year and 8.4% at even strength, his chances to do so on a loaded offense are likely. Donato only played 12 games last campaign but he made them count with nine points in said contests.
A total wild card play if you want to feed your urge for gambles early, Martin Necas should be out there. With fellow rookie Valentin Zykov, who may also be on the wire, as well as steadily rising Brock McGinn, the trio makes an interesting third line for the Carolina Hurricanes. With a finisher in Zykov while certainly never seeing top defensive assignments, it would not hurt to see if the young Necas can catch fire quick to begin the season. As a believer in always streaming one or two roster spots every week, especially in redraft leagues, I am interested enough in the offense in Raleigh to give it a go.
The train is leaving the station folks and with his first goal last night, expect a steady stream of offense from the Czech winger if he remains in the Washington Capitals top six. Playing with elite playmaker Nicklas Backstrom and crafty TJ Oshie, Jakub Vrana doesn’t have to do very much on his own for routine scoring chances. The young winger brings brilliant speed to the fold which the other two lack, therefore making for a dangerous second line in the District of Columbia. This line had a coming out party in Washington’s run to a title and looks to be picking up right where they left off. Invest not in Vrana before others catch on and enjoy.
Perhaps you were the one who couldn’t leave Shea Weber on the board any longer like me and are in need of a slot fill in until his return later this year. Samuel Girard of the Colorado Avalanche makes for an interesting stream early on based off the Avs first game. Paired with defensively sound Erik Johnson, Girard played almost 21 minutes a night and looks to be in line for more responsibility this season in the Mile High City. A blueliner with plenty of skating ability much like Chabot, he too is a pickup based on potential with no real history to look to. Exposure to a high-end top line at even strength helps his case as a depth option. Girard posted 23 points in 73 games played split between the Nashville Predators and Colorado at 20 years of age. This is solid production for someone so young at a position that almost always takes until the mid-twenties to see a player develop fully. While I wouldn’t expect anything profound being buried behind Tyson Barrie for primary power play time, his top-four usage gives him the ice time to make things happen offensively if he seizes the opportunity.
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- Ramblings: Landeskog Returns, Phil Finally Provides Some Thrill (Dec 6)