Viktor Stalberg, LW, Blackhawks (21 percent): Nothing tricky to this one: Stalberg is playing on the top Chicago line (hello Toews, hello Kaner) and he's pumping the puck at to and into the net (five goals in four games, along with 18 shots). His ownership level should be in the 30-50 range right now, but I was pleasantly surprised to see him unowned in the Friends & Family League as I started today's shopping list. Start stitching up the sweater.
Derick Brassard, C, Bluejackets (12 percent): He never really was on the same page with former coach Scott Arniel, so the pilot change is a welcome thing for Brassard. The goal-starved Jackets have seen some production of late from the former premium pick (1.06, 2006); Brassard has three goals and a pair of power-play tallies in his his last five games. He's getting the best of the Columbus teammates on his line, centering Vinny Prospal and Rick Nash. If it's going to happen, it's going to happen now.
Todd Bertuzzi, LW/RW, Red Wings: (19 percent): In a world of Ernies, sometimes you have to settle for grumpy old Bert. I can't promise you this will be a long-term thing; Bertuzzi's staying power is never a good bet. But with a 6-4-10 line and a plus-10 rating over the last month, why not jump on board? Bertuzzi also offers multi-wing eligibility, and he's looking good on a line with Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen.
Nick Foligno, LW, Senators (14 percent): You know the rules with goon points: you want to get them from a player who can also contribute in other categories. Foligno has 32 minutes in the sin bin over the last month, but he's also handy with the puck (2-6-8, 25 shots, plus-4 rating). The Senators have been a frugal delight in 2011-12, no matter your fantasy needs (their top two scoring lines have previous waiver-wire gems all over the place).
Jay Harrison, D, Hurricanes (15 percent): While there's a lot of luck and variance to defenseman goals, you still want to follow the shots where you can. Harrison has a whopping 39 SOGs over the last month, along with a handy 5-4-9 line and an even rating on a mediocre club. He's on pace to be in the 35-40 point range when the year ends, not bad given the modest power-play time he receives. And obviously he's more important to the Canes right now with Joni Pitkanen hurt.
Frans Nielsen, C, Islanders (4 percent): You never have to pay too much for an Islander, so it seems. They're the forgotten team in the Tri-State area, always fighting for attention amongst the Rangers, Devils and Flyers. The crafty center has landed on a key power-play spot and is making it work, collecting seven man-advantage points over the last 13 games. He'd rather pass than shoot and he's not going to throw his weight around (just two minutes in the sin bin), but if you need some help in the power-play stats, we offer up Nielsen to you.
Marc-Edouard Vlasic, D, Sharks (22 percent): Big kosher pickle, cold draft beer, and a sneaky line of production (17 points, plus-19 rating, 68 shots). When you're looking for a working-class defensemen to help you out in a deeper league, look to the best NHL clubs first - they'll always have some under the radar blueliners.
Jay Bouwmeester, D, Flames (10 percent): If you're in a league where plus/minus counts, you might want to turn the page: Big Bouw Wow has a minus-11 number through 47 games, with most of the red ink coming in the last month. But he's also getting a chance on the man-advantage, positing seven points and four power-play points over the last four weeks. There's a utility to that line in some formats.
Captain Obvious (some names names for shallow leagues): The surging Islanders are getting plenty of scoring from their big names of late (Matt Moulson, John Tavares), and P.A. Parenteau (44 percent) is also coming along for the ride. Big Pappy has 15 points over the last month, along with 12 PIMs and 34 shots. Ah, the anonymous Fishermen. … And sticking on the Island, why not give Evgeni Nabokov (28 percent) a look? He's won six of his last nine starts, including an eye-catching shutout at Washington on Tuesday. It's entirely possible he could be shipped to a contender at the trade deadline, improving his lot in fantasy life. … Justin Williams (59 percent) is having a ball on a go-go Kings, rolling up seven points and 19 shots over a five-game scoring streak. LA has a point in each of those games, collecting three wins and a pair of overtime losses. Hockey as it oughta be.
- Sports & Recreation
- Sports & Recreation/Ice Hockey
- Viktor Stalberg
- Todd Bertuzzi
- Derick Brassard