The break in the NHL schedule is over, but for many people are still on break with their families so there wasn't a ton of transaction activity in Yahoo! leagues on Saturday. The players that were dropped yesterday were largely cases of players that enjoyed a strong start or a hot streak that fantasy owners have now turned on. Are they giving up prematurely? Let's take a look...
Ryan Spooner (Boston - C/LW)
Dropped: 722 times
Why? His hot streak is over.
Recommendation: Spooner is a bit of an odd case because he was also picked up 326 times on Saturday, so while the trend was still towards dropping him, there isn't a clear cut consensus. That's understandable because he's not far removed from his Dec. 7-18 stretch where he recorded three goals and 10 points in six contests. He has no points and a minus-four rating in the three games following that hot streak. Spooner is a well regarded prospect who has managed to establish himself as an everyday player with the Bruins this season. His current 22 points in 34 games is skewed by his recent efforts, but it wouldn't be surprising to see him finish with around 40-45 points in 2015-16. That's not good enough to justify holding onto him in most leagues though.
Reto Berra (Colorado - G)
Dropped: 439 times
Why? Is out with an ankle injury.
Recommendation: Berra is only expected to be out for about 10 days, so it's not really worth giving up on him over that alone. For some this might be a case of the straw that broke the camel's back. Berra got off to a strong start this season while Semyon Varlamov struggled out of the gate, which led to a bit of a goaltending controversy. However, Berra hasn't started since Dec. 9 due in large part to Varlamov going on a stretch where he allowed just six goals in six games. Berra still isn't a bad option if you already own Varlamov and want an insurance policy, but Berra should be regarded as the number two goaltender and your expectations for the amount of playing time he'll get need to reflect that.
Jeff Petry (Montreal - D)
Dropped: 417 times
Why? He has just one point and a minus-seven rating in his last seven games.
Recommendation: Petry's struggles correspond with the Canadiens' slump and he'll likely bounce back once the team does. That being said, Petry is a pretty borderline option in most fantasy leagues anyways, so I can't really defend keeping him when better options are likely available.
Martin Hanzal (Arizona - C)
Dropped: 370 times
Why? Hanzal has missed six of the Coyotes' last seven games due to a lower-body injury.
Recommendation: The timing of his injury is very unfortunate because Hanzal has had a great season otherwise with five goals and 20 points in 26 contests. If you've stuck with him this long, you might as well continue to hold onto Hanzal to see if he can build off of his earlier performance once he returns. It's not clear how much longer Hanzal will be sidelined for, but it sounds like he's day-to-day.
Teuvo Teravainen (Chicago - LW)
Dropped: 314 times
Why? He's cooled off.
Recommendation: Teravainen had a stretch of four goals and seven points in seven contests, but has no points and a minus-two rating in his last three games. He's got a lot of upside, but he also needs to continue to work his way up the Blackhawks' depth charts. As it is, he's averaging a modest 14:27 minutes per game, which caps his short-term production. He has 16 points in 32 contests this season and it seems reasonable to expect him to maintain that point-per-game pace for the remainder of 2015-16. With that in mind, I don't see a compelling reason to hold onto him if you're in a single-season league.