We’re already a third of the way through the fantasy hockey regular season; the year is flying by! At this point you should be aware of what the strengths and weaknesses of your team are and what you need to improve or maintain pace. As fantasy owners, we’re never happy with our team until we’re champions, which is why we’re always looking for possible breakout players. This week there are a few guys who aren’t owned in the majority of leagues but have the potential to step up their production.
Fantasy Hockey: Weekly Waiver Wire Pick-Ups – Dec 1st
Jiri Hudler, CGY F (Owned %: ESPN 55.2%, Yahoo 50%)
How is a top 15 scorer in the NHL owned in less than 60% of leagues? Hudler was pretty good last season, but I don’t think many people expected him or the Flames to be doing so well a quarter of the way through this season. With 23 points in 24 games, it’s hard to imagine Hudler will maintain his pace, but given how well the team is playing he should continue to rack up points this season.
Kris Versteeg, CHI F (ESPN 38%, Yahoo 36%)
Versteeg is on fire lately, notching points in eight of his last ten games. Currently playing on Chicago’s second line with Brad Richards and Patrick Kane, Versteeg has hit his stride this year. Currently on pace to score over 65 points this season, and playing on Chicago’s first PP unit, what’s not to love about Versteeg right now?
Nino Niederreiter, MIN F (ESPN 32%, Yahoo 24%)
After a slow start in October, Niederreiter turned things around in November scoring nine goals, including one hat trick. While it would be nice to see Niederreiter playing in the top six every night, he is on the Wild’s second PP unit right now, where he scored four of his nine goals last month.
Riley Sheahan, DET F (ESPN 4.4%, Yahoo 5%)
Currently centering the Red Wings second line, Sheahan has been one of the best fantasy players in the league over the last two weeks. Detroit has won four games in a row and is currently averaging over three goals a game. The Red Wings also have the 6th best power play percentage in the league and Sheahan is starting on the second unit.
Mikko Koivu, MIN F (ESPN 40.2%, Yahoo 38%)
Is Koivu finally heating up? It sure seems like it, as he’s scored four points in his last four games. Koivu and the Wild are still struggling on the power play, but 5v5 the team is one of the league’s top 10 teams in scoring.
Tommy Wingels, SJ F (ESPN 37.2%, Yahoo 31%)
If you’re in a league that counts hits, you need to pick up Wingels. Not only is he fourth in the league in hits, but of the top 15 hits leaders in the league, only Alexander Ovechkin has more goals.
Leo Komarov, TOR F (ESPN 17.6%, Yahoo 13%)
Speaking of players who hit people, Komarov has more hits and more points than Wingels. Obviously there is concern about his recent concussion, but as of today Komarov is only day-to-day with the injury. If he comes back in the next week expect him to keep racking up the hits and chipping in with points.
With the holiday season in full swing now, it’s often tough for fantasy owners to maintain their teams while traveling or dealing with the normal seasonal outings and get-togethers. This is a great time of year to grab a couple wins just by staying on top of your fantasy teams while other owners let real life get in the way of what really matters. Make sure you’re setting your lineups in advance if you’re going to be flying, or if you know that you’ll be waking up late after a night of celebrating by consuming too much egg nog.
Pro-tip: Starbucks normally has free Wi-Fi if you’re having trouble getting 4G coverage and your ESPN or Yahoo apps aren’t working properly. Also, offering to buy your family coffee makes you look like the good guy and won’t get you yelled at for always being on your phone checking your fantasy team.
Thank you for reading. Please take a moment to follow me on Twitter – @
For the latest in sports injury news, check out our friends at Sports Injury Alert.
Have you tuned into Last Word On Sports Radio? LWOS is pleased to bring you 24/7 sports radio to your PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone. What are you waiting for? GO!