Welcome to the 2022-23 Fantasy Hockey Week 7 Stock Watch.
Below I'll take a look at some players who are doing various things. And I'll tell you why I think those things have made said players more or less valuable.
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All statistics from DobberHockey unless otherwise stated. Thursday's games are not included as part of the analysis below.
2022-23 Fantasy Hockey Week 7 Stock Watch
Mike Matheson, D, Montreal Canadiens (19% rostered)
Matheson suffered an abdominal injury in the pre-season which delayed his Canadiens debut. This forced all of us to hold our breath in anticipation to see where he would fit in the Habs lineup. Well, feel free to exhale as Matheson returned to the lineup this past week and did, in fact, assume the role of quarterbacking the top powerplay unit.
— Matt Drake (@DrakeMT) November 20, 2022
Matheson's return bumped Chris Wideman down the depth chart, and that is likely a good thing. Even with the high-powered outbursts of Nick Suzuki, Cole Caufield, and Kirby Dach, the Canadiens' power play conversion percentage ranks 28th in the league. I'm not placing the blame solely on Wideman, but it seems to me a shake-up is overdue.
Matheson has never been an elite offensive defenseman, so temper your expectations. But he has produced offensively at respectable levels several times over his career. Last year he registered 11 goals, good for 16th overall amongst all defensemen. That's pretty good for someone who is only 19 percent owned in Yahoo leagues.
Juuso Parssinen, C, Nashville Predators (10% rostered)
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Juuso Parssinen was selected 210th overall in the 2019 NHL entry draft. That's the seventh round, and here he is three seasons later playing on the top line and top powerplay unit in the NHL. Mining value out of later rounds in the draft is a surefire way for NHL teams to get ahead of the competition. Chalk Juuso up as a win for the Preds.
First NHL game, first NHL goal. ?
Juuso Parssinen (@parssinen16) takes it to the net and gets rewarded!
— NHL (@NHL) November 13, 2022
Back to Parssinen. He has registered three goals and two assists over five games thus far in his young career. With an elevated shooting percentage of 37.5 percent expect the goal rate to come down. But his most common linemates have been Filip Forsberg and Mikael Granlund. Forsberg is an elite offensive player and being on a line with him should continue to positively impact Parssinen's production. He is also on the Preds' top powerplay unit, logging 3:21 per game on the man advantage.
Parssinen is a great short-term streaming option, and I'd be willing to keep him on my team until the points stop coming. Nashville is rolling at the moment, with four wins in their last five games and Parssinen has been a part of that winning recipe.
Rasmus Sandin, D, Toronto Maple Leafs (12% rostered)
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The Toronto Maple Leafs are in injury hell. TJ Brodie and Jake Muzzin were already on the shelf, and now Morgan Rielly will miss at least 10 games after being placed on the Long-Term Injured Reserve list earlier this week.
That leaves a hole in the Leafs' top powerplay unit and the early money is on Rasmus Sandin to fill it. After missing training camp due to contract negotiations, the 22-year-old signed a two-year $2.8 million deal with Toronto earlier this season.
After a fine 2021-22 season in which Sandin put up 16 points through 51 games, he started this season with some wobble. Rielly's absence will provide an opportunity for him to show the Leafs that he was well worth the money.
Much of the aforementioned wobble has come on the defensive side of the puck, due mostly to a few marked and costly turnovers. But offensively Sandin has been fine. He has six points over 20 games thus far while averaging only 16:42 a night and a modest 1:11 on the powerplay. The Leafs' played their first game without Rielly on Wednesday night and Sandin logged 20:25, with over four minutes on the powerplay.
Rielly was averaging 23 minutes a game prior to his injury (with more than three minutes a night on the man advantage). I would not be surprised if Sandin's totals continue to increase to something along those lines. That's a six-minute bump in playing time and a nearly three-fold increase for the powerplay. Sign me up.
Nothing is guaranteed in this world. TJ Brodie is due back from injury soon-ish but is not currently traveling with the team. His eventual return might negatively impact Sandin's deployment. But if Sandin can produce over the next week or so, it would go a long way to ensure an increased role for Sandin over the next four to six weeks. I'd hop on the train before it gets too far from the station. His ownership has already doubled over the last 24 hours; I would not wait to add him.
Darcy Kuemper, G, Washington Capitals (94% rostered)
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Darcy Kuemper has won one of his last eight starts. In that span, he has posted negative goals saved above average in six games. Over the course of the entire season, he has a quality start percentage of 46.7 and a save percentage of .907. That's not what the Capitals had in mind when they signed him to a five-year $26 million dollar deal this off-season.
If there is a small silver lining, it's that Kuemper has very little competition for playing time. Charlie Lindgren is the backup in Washington and has a few wins this season. But his upside is not in the same tier as Kuemper's.
Starting any Washington goaltender right now is hard to do. The Capitals have lost five of their last six games, with some of those losses coming in winnable games if they had average goaltending. I wouldn't be looking to sell Kuemper right now with his value so low. Maybe spot-start him against weaker teams (upcoming games against the Flyers and Canucks, for example) and hope he turns it around.
For the time being his stock is down.
Tanner Jeannot, RW, Nashville Predators (44% rostered)
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Tanner Jeannot currently finds himself on the third line. Which is nothing new. That's exactly where he was for the majority of last season when he led all rookies in goals. He was also second in the league in hits last year and racked up 130 penalty minutes. Very few players offer that kind of category coverage. The man was fantasy gold.
The big difference between this year and last year is his powerplay deployment. Last season he saw stretches of games where he was a steady presence on either the first or second man-advantage unit for the Predators.
Starting this season, his powerplay time increased. In the first nine games, he saw fewer than two minutes on the man advantage only twice. Things were looking up! But his poor point production and the Predators' early struggles resulted in a shakeup of the powerplay units, and Jeannot was punted in favor of other players.
Over his last five games, Jeannot has seen a total of 50 seconds on the powerplay. Over his last 12 games, Jeannot has failed to register a single point. Jeannot's broad category coverage makes it easier to roster him when his offensive output goes through dry spells. But his current point drought makes him the mayor of drop-town. Keep an eye on Jeannot and if his powerplay time increases or we see some positive regression, don't hesitate to add him. For now, though, his stock is on the decline.
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