This week’s question is:
With Christmas coming up on Tuesday, what would be the best present for your fantasy team?
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Ryan: Some offense out of William Nylander would be nice. I know I was rather pessimistic about him in a previous roundtable, but that was after he missed months as a contract holdout. Back when I drafted him, it seemed plausible that he would be signed before the end of training camp or early in the season (after all, we hadn't really seen this kind of holdout pre-Nylander). Instead I ended up holding onto him as a dead weight for the first quarter of the season and now that he is playing, he has no goals and two assists in eight games. Just from the perspective of a guy that has him in a fantasy league, I'd like to get something out of him.
Daniel: I played around with a few different strategies on Draft Day, and one of them was to leave myself a bit thin among defenseman. One rearguard I had high hopes for was Zach Werenski of the Columbus Blue Jackets. In his initial season he posted 47 points with a plus-17 rating, but fell back a bit. I was hopeful of taking advantage of the sophomore jinx, as he tumbled a bit as far as ADP. I own quite a bit of Werenski stock, but so far it's about as valuable as shares of Arconic, Goodyear or Unum Group in 2018. It isn't so much that his offense is THAT far down, but he has a dismal minus-9 rating, and he is on pace to finish in the negative in double digits unless they turn things around in C-Bus. (Sing along...) On the fifth day of Christmas...my true love gave to me...a plus-5 rating! OK, that was a stretch.
Corey: Health and production immediately comes mind as the best presents, but if we are talking about individual players then I'd like to see more from Shayne Gostisbehere. He is a far away from the scoring pace he established last season when he generated 13 goals and 65 points in 78 games. Gostisbehere's 0.44 points per game this year is the worst of his career. He currently has four goals and 15 points through 34 contests, which includes just one goal and five helpers in the last 18 games.
Brian: I'm hoping that the person impersonating Vladimir Tarasenko leaves the building and the real Taraenko returns. In 34 games so far this season, the Russian sniper has a mere 11 goals and 22 points. Compare that to the 37 goals the real Tarasenko has averaged for the past four seasons, and you see why I'm hoping Santa makes the exchange.
Joey: It would be nice to get Alex Pietrangelo and PK Subban back at full health sooner than later. Finding quality defenders that can chip in offensively isn’t easy, so when two players are out due to injury, it really affects the fantasy squad. Hopefully, I haven’t been too naughty this year so Santa could grant me that wish.
Michael: I took Jesse Puljujarvi last season for a dollar in my keeper pool and I would love it if he would remain on a line with Connor McDavid. As far as the NHL is concerned, it would be great if Santa could finally give Cory Schneider a win or Corey Crawford some good health.