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Waiver Wired

Pickups for the final week

by Ryan Dadoun
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

This is it, the final week of the season.  Given that there's no long-term to worry about, any player on a hot streak is even more desirable.  Each team's schedule is also a bigger factor as you're more likely to use a player on a team that competes on Friday, when just four teams are playing and there will therefore be plenty of available spots on your roster, compared to Thursday when 11 squads are playing.

 

Beyond that it's worth considering what a player has left to fight for.  A playoff spot or positioning are obvious ones, but there's plenty of players on bad teams that are competing for a new contract too.

 

With those factors in mind, here's our list of potential pickups for the home stretch.  Good luck!

 

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Alexandre Burrows (VAN) - RW/LW - Owned in 7% of Yahoo leagues

 

With 33 points in 67 games, Burrows hasn't managed to revitalize his career in 2014-15.  Perhaps his days of 20-plus goal and 50-plus point campaigns are behind him.  In the short-term though, he's been hot lately with four goals and five points in his last four games.  Just as noteworthy is the fact that he's been on a line with the Sedin twins.  The Canucks have essentially made the playoffs at this point, but their spot isn't so secure that they can just take it easy over the last week.  Even if they do secure a playoff berth before the final day, they will likely be in a fight for position until the bitter end, so motivation shouldn't be an issue.

 

Nick Bonino (VAN) - C - Owned in 17% of Yahoo leagues

 

Before we move past the Canucks, it's worth it to highlight Bonino too.  After getting off to a hot start this season, he went on a stretch where he recorded just six points in 30 contests and that justifiably soured a lot of fantasy owners to him.  The 26-year-old seems to be out from the other side of that though as he had four goals and 11 points in 16 March contests.  Granted he's gotten off to a slow start this month, but he's still not a bad choice if you're looking for some last-minute help at center.

 

Brian Gionta (BUF) - RW - Owned in 8% of Yahoo leagues

 

Gionta is someone I hesitate to include, primarily because he's a member of the horrendous Buffalo Sabres, but there are some reasons I ultimately put him in anyways.  First is the obvious: He's been very good lately.  While Buffalo remains the worst offensive team in the league, Gionta has four goals and 12 points in his last 10 games.  The other reason is that Buffalo might actually not be a bad team to own players from in the last week of the campaign.  The Sabres play on Monday and Friday, which are light days in the schedule (five games Monday, two Friday).  That makes it more likely that you'll have an opportunity to use him.

 

Mark Arcobello (ARI) - C - Owned in 1% of Yahoo leagues

 

Arizona is another team I would be mostly squeamish about taking guys on, but Arcobello.  For some, the only thing they think of when they hear the name Arcobello is his unusual distinction of playing on four different teams this season.  Some might not even know that much about him.  Regardless, he is a highly motivated player.  After getting tossed around this season, he has finally been able to settle with a club and with the potential for a contract on the line, he has scored four goals and eight points in his last six games.  Few teams have less left to play for than Arizona.  For players have more to play for than Arcobello.

 

Jonathan Drouin (TBL) - LW/RW - Owned in 40% of Yahoo leagues

 

I was a big believe in Drouin going into this season and while he's been fine when you remember that he's a rookie that only recently turned 20 years old, I had to admit that I had incorrectly projected him to do more this season.  That being said, he has the potential to finish the 2014-15 campaign on a high note after scoring two goals and three points in his last four games.  He's also been taking some shifts with Steve Stamkos, which obviously is always a good thing.  That being said, if you do have interest in him, I advise waiting.  Tampa Bay doesn't play until Thursday, so there's no point in picking him up yet.

 

Chris Tierney (SJS) - C - Owned in 0% of Yahoo leagues

 

If you need help now, what you could do is pick up Tierney immediately and then switch to Drouin following San Jose's game against Dallas on Monday.  Why Tierney?  Well, for one thing he's hot and given that there's no long-term to think about, any player on the right end of a streak is desirable right now.  He has four goals and eight points in his last seven contests.  The other factor is that his offensive burst hasn't come out of nowhere.  He broke out in 2013-14 with the OHL London Knights, scoring 40 goals and 89 points in 67 OHL contests and has followed that up by recording 24 points in 27 AHL games as a rookie this season.  He has just 19 points in 40 games with San Jose including his recent streak, but it's worth keeping in mind that the Sharks weren't giving him much playing time for the better part of the year.  It's only since mid-March that Tierney logging 14-plus minutes has become the norm rather than the exception.

 

Michael Del Zotto (PHI) - D - Owned in 24% of Yahoo leagues

 

Del Zotto's been decent offensively for most of the season as illustrated by his 10 goals and 32 points in 61 games.  He's been particularly good lately though with a goal and six points in his last five games.  Del Zotto is playing for a contract, so he shouldn't have trouble staying motivated even though Philadelphia no longer has a chance of making the playoffs.  It's also worth noting that the Flyers have been leaning on him heavily, giving him 23:51 minutes per game since the All-Star break compared to an average of 20:21 minutes prior to it.

 

David Pastrnak (BOS) - RW - Owned in 9% of Yahoo leagues

 

Boston has been a pretty streaky team lately and at times that's thrown its season into jeopardy, but David Pastrnak has been one of the positives through that period.  The 18-year-old forward has six goals and 21 points in 29 games since the start of February after starting his NHL career on a bit of a quiet note.  Boston's playoff position still isn't secured and it also has positioning left to play for, so the Bruins are expected to give these final regular season games everything they've got.  Additionally, Boston is one of just three teams that is scheduled to play on Wednesday, so there's a good chance you would have a spot available for him on that day.

Ryan Dadoun
Ryan Dadoun is an Associate Editor for Hockey on Rotoworld. Feel free to follow him on Twitter or check out his blog.