The crap-shoot that is fantasy hockey is half over, and while Sidney Crosby owners collectively hold their breath, managers who took Zach Parise or Ilya Kovalchuk are likely scouring the waiver wire or cursing the injury bug as we speak.
Injuries have plagued the likes of Parise, Pavel Datsyuk, Jason Spezza, TJ Oshie, Evgeni Malkin, Alex Semin, Derek Roy and Ryan Getzlaf. For managers seeing red on their rosters, there is still hope for a second-half surge, be it through waivers, trades or flat-out miracles.
Do you believe in miracles? This coming from the guy who lost his fantasy football league by one-tenth of a point. Anyway, here are some options for your squad in the weeks to come:
Kyle Okposo can provide some offense playing alongside John Tavares (photo credit: sykora93/Flickr)
Teddy Purcell, Tampa Bay
Purcell has found a nice little niche in Tampa since departing from D.C. He’s owned in just nine percent of Yahoo! leagues and has tallied 30 points, half coming on the powerplay.
Mark Recchi, Boston
Believe it or not, Recchi (owned in a third of Yahoo! leagues), playing alongside Brad Marchand (11 percent) and Patrice Bergeron, has been the catalyst of an unlikely offensive surge in Boston. Recchi and Marchand have combined for a plus-22 in the past 30 days.
Brian Rolston, New Jersey
Owned in just six percent of Yahoo! leagues, Rolston has responded to being waved in grandeur fashion: four goals, seven assists with a plus-six rating in the past month. Like the rest of the Devils, Rolston has something to prove during what remains of a forgettable season in Newark.
Vaclav Prospal, New York Rangers
Prospal is set to return later this week and will likely see time alongside Marian Gaborik. He posted eight points in six games last Feburary leading up to the Olympic break. He’s owned in 12 percent of leagues.
Mats Zuccarello, New York Rangers
Averaging slightly over a point-per-game at home, the Norwegian is making the most of his NHL debut with 11 points in 17 games. He’s dual-wing eligible in Yahoo! and sees a decent amount of powerplay time for the Blueshirts.
Kyle Okposo, New York Islanders
The knock on Okposo is always going to be his plus/minus, but consider linemate John Tavares’ second half scoring spree last season and Okposo might be worth the risk. Takes a ton of shots and is available over three-quarters of Yahoo! leagues.
Lee Stempniak, Phoenix
Stempniak had a monster month (14 points, plus-seven) and was good for almost a goal a game late last year after coming to the desert from Toronto. Likely he’ll continue to contribute and is owned in just 17 percent of leagues.
Derick Brassard, Columbus
Skating on the top pairing with Rick Nash and Jake Voracek, Brassard was scorching before the All-Star break with eight points in three games. He’s just three points from his career best of 34, has been more responsible on defense (minus-two opposed to last year’s minus-17) and is only owned in a quarter of Yahoo! leagues.
Marian Hossa, Chicago
Hossa went for 21 in 25 from Februrary up until the playoffs and could be worth the risk as a buy-low candidate because he’s missed some time with various ailments. Two seasons ago, Hossa had 23 points in the final 25 games, so he’s proven his worth down the stretch.
David Moss, Calgary
Moss is a bit of a risk here, as he’s gone netted two goals on four separate occasions in January but pointless in eight games over the course of the month. Keep an eye on Calgary’s progress and Moss, once a 20 goal scorer, could be a worthwhile option for goals on the right wing.
Joe Corvo, Carolina
A quiet 11 points, eight on the man advantage, in the past month. The Hurricanes will lean on Corvo to anchor the powerplay for the next few weeks as they try to make some noise in the Southeast.
Fedor Tyutin, Columbus
Ten points in January, half on the powerplay, for a sputtering Blue Jackets team. Hasn’t been rumored to be moved but could be a valuable puck mover at a reasonable $2.8 million cap hit per year.
Keep an eye on Islanders defenseman Mark Streit, who resumed skating with the team last week and is worth an IR stash if you have an open spot. Jason Spezza is due back in the coming weeks and is on the trade block. Atlanta center Nik Antropov is finally healthy and put together a decent scoring streak before the break. And of course, Peter Forsberg’s possible return could boost a team lacking in powerplay scoring, where he’ll likely see plenty of ice time. THN’s Darryl Dobb’s also made an interesting point regarding games played — the Rangers, Atlanta and Anaheim have all played 52 games, while Buffalo, Florida, Toronto, Islanders, New Jersey, Detroit, Minnesota, Columbus, St. Louis and Edmonton have played 49.