Many fantasy hockey leagues are about to start up their final matchups next week, and it has never been more important to have a strong roster. Throughout the regular fantasy hockey season, the goal is to have players on your team who are great on the ice, but also on teams that are very well performing. However, this time of the year can be a little weird. This week should be approached very differently than most. Why? Let’s discuss this.
Firstly, teams that have solidified a playoff spot or are about to clinch do not care about the rest of the season at all. These games do not matter, and the players on those teams will not be trying as hard as they usually do. We just saw the powerhouse Boston Bruins lose to a desperately fighting Nashville Predators. Why? Well, it’s not because Nashville is a better hockey team, it’s because Nashville is fighting tooth and nail for a playoff spot, while Boston is practically just twiddling their thumbs waiting for the playoffs to finally start. Now is the time of year when we see some really bad teams win games that they probably shouldn’t.
Secondly, those teams that have locked up a playoff spot will begin resting players. That is a fact. It happens every year and it is never surprising. Why risk injury to one of your players during a meaningless game when you need them for the playoffs? Rosters are going to look weird near the end of the season, and there might be some names on the back of jerseys that you have never heard of before. This is exactly the reason why.
Player addition suggestions
Now, how do you approach strengthening your fantasy hockey team during one of the most important times of the year, while NHL teams will be doing all this? The answer is simple. Only pickup players from the New York Islanders, Pittsburgh Penguins, Calgary Flames, Florida Panthers, Nashville Predators, and Winnipeg Jets. Teams that are still fighting for a spot, and likely will be until the end of the season. Below is one player from each team worth adding.
- New York Islanders: Kyle Palmieri – RW – 11% owned
- Pittsburgh Penguins: Rickard Rakell – LW, RW – 68% owned
- Calgary Flames: Mikael Backlund – C – 46% owned
- Florida Panthers: Eetu Luostarinen – C, LW – 7% owned
- Nashville Predators: Philip Tomasino – RW – 5% owned
- Winnipeg Jets: Vladislav Namestnikov – C, LW – 2% owned
Time to secure a championship
It’s the most beautiful and stressful time of the fantasy hockey season, and roster moves are vital. Adding players who are still playing meaningful hockey games is a safe way to ensure you get maximum value out of each transaction. It’s almost time for fantasy hockey finals, and it’s been a long time coming. Best of luck to all fantasy hockey managers.