Fantasy: Hodgson, Kassian lead deadline day deals

By Matt Cubeta - Staff Writer

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Fantasy: Hodgson, Kassian lead deadline day deals's Matt Cubeta takes a look at how the big deals from Monday's trade deadline can impact your fantasy team.

The 2012 NHL trade deadline came and went. We saw 16 trades go down on the final day of the deadline and the majority of fantasy owners, and NHL fans in general, were wondering what would happen to coveted superstar, Rick Nash. Perhaps to the disappointment of Nash's fantasy owners, he was not traded.

Rick Nash is still Rick Nash, so if you've got him on your squad, you know what you're getting. This hasn't been his best season (62 games: 21 G, 22 A, minus-23, 32 PIMs, 14 PPP, 236 SOG), but he is still an elite forward capable of single-handedly carrying your team to a fantasy championship -- especially for those of you in head-to-head leagues. 

While Nash didn't end up getting traded, there were some other players that could see an increase in fantasy value and are available in most fantasy leagues. Let's have a look:

Cody Hodgson (owned in 16 percent of Yahoo! Fantasy Leagues) --
In arguably the biggest trade of the day, Hodgson found himself traveling across countries from Vancouver to Buffalo. Hodgson, Vancouver's first-round pick from 2008 (10th overall), had 16 goals, 33 points, a plus-8, 8 penalty minutes, 10 power play points and 103 SOG in 63 games for the Canucks and will now be a focal point of the Buffalo offense for the next few years. A fan favorite in Vancouver, Hodgson should suit up as the Sabres' second line center and continue to produce solid numbers down the stretch. His plus/minus could dip a bit, but the Sabres have been playing good hockey of late. Hodgson could be a big sleeper for the rest of the way and makes for a nice pick-up in most leagues -- for those of you in keeper leagues, he's a must-own.
Fantasy Recommendation: If you have room, take a flyer on him


Kostitsyns reunited in Nashville

By John Manasso - Correspondent
The Predators and Canadiens made the first big deal of the day, sending Andrei Kostitsyn to Nashville and reuniting him with his brother, Sergei. READ MORE ›
Zack Kassian (1 percent) -- On the other end of the Hodgson swap, 6-foot-3 forward Kassian goes to the Cup-contending Canucks. Vancouver needed some grit, and they answered that with the acquisition of Kassian. Kassian appeared in 27 games for the Sabres and posted just 3 goals and 7 points to go along with 20 penalty minutes and 36 shots on goal, but he could get a chance on the Canucks' second line alongside Ryan Kesler, which would clearly increase his value. Like Hodgson, Kassian was the Sabres' first-round choice in the 2009 draft (13th overall) and has the potential to be a fantasy difference-maker for the remainder of the way.
Fantasy Recommendation: Keep an eye on him -- if on Kesler's line, pick him up in deep leagues

Andrei Kostitsyn (11 percent) --
There's a family reunion happening in Nashville and fantasy owners need to join the party. Andrei will be reunited with his brother Sergei on the Predators and this trade is definitely good news for Andrei. While his value hasn't been what it was in the past -- Kostitsyn has had three 20-plus goal seasons in five full NHL seasons -- he could be in line for a solid finish down the stretch. He has just 12 goals and 12 assists in 53 games so far for the Habs, but don't be surprised if he finishes his final 20 games with the Preds by posting around 5-7 goals and maybe 12-15 points by season's end. He'll be a happy camper out of Montreal and will likely play on the same line with his brother, which has to be a good thing. There's an outside chance he flops entirely, but we're banking on Barry Trotz keeping him in line and righting the ship with the talented 27-year-old.
Fantasy Recommendation: Add him now in deep leagues

Tom Gilbert (3 percent) --
With the Wild already having dealt Marek Zidlicky to the Devils earlier this week, the Wild snatched up Gilbert from the Oilers in exchange for shutdown defenseman Nick Schultz. This is a good move for the Wild, who were in search for a solid puck-moving defenseman, and Gilbert fits that bill. In 47 games this season for the Oilers, Gilbert has 3 goals, 14 assists, a minus-4 rating, 6 power play points and 50 shots on goal. He won't help in the penalty minute category (12 PIMs), but he could end up serving as Minnesota's top offensive defenseman going forward -- expect him to run the point on the first power play unit, so if you're in need of power play production, Gilbert makes for a solid addition.
Fantasy Recommendation: Keep an eye on him

Paul Gaustad (3 percent) -- While the Predators' addition of Gaustad certainly helps them in reality, the move doesn't exactly carry many fantasy implications. Gaustad is an extremely good face-off guy, solid in the defensive zone and a great teammate, but that won't help fantasy owners. His one potential value as a fantasy player is his current 70 penalty minutes -- to go along with 7 goals and 10 assists in 56 games. If you're looking for a player that will help you in the PIMs category and chips in a few points here and there, then Gaustad is your guy; if not, then leave him in the waiver pool.
Fantasy Recommendation: Leave him on the waiver wire

Jamie McGinn
Left Wing - SJS
GOALS: 12 | ASST: 12 | PTS: 24
SOG: 104 | +/-: 1
Jamie McGinn (2 percent) -- McGinn has been a surprisingly decent fantasy player this season with 12 goals and 12 assists in 61 games for the Sharks, but now he'll find himself suiting up for the Avalanche, which will likely decrease his fantasy value. He bounced around in San Jose's lineup throughout the season, but for the most part he was a bottom-six forward (he did fill in at times for Ryane Clowe when he was injured). He'll likely play that exact role in Colorado, a team that has significantly less offensive upside. With the Avs' top two lines of forwards set, look for McGinn to line up on the third unit and don't expect him to produce much for the final stretch of the regular season.
Fantasy Recommendation: Leave him on the waiver wire

TJ Galiardi and Daniel Winnik (1 percent each) -- The former Avalanche forwards will be taking their game to San Jose for the final 21 games. Expect both of these players to join the third line -- meaning that they mostly won't carry much fantasy value. Galiardi showed potential with 15 goals and 39 points as a rookie in 2009-10, but then only appeared in 35 games last season because of injuries. Unfortunately, this season he has not produced much offense (8 G, 6 A in 55 games), making Galiardi an afterthought in fantasy leagues. Winnik has been slightly more productive with 5 goals and 18 points in 63 games for the Avs, but again, as a third-liner in San Jose, fantasy owners shouldn't be racing to add the power forward. The Sharks have added definite depth on offense, and if any of their big guns get hurt down the stretch, Galiardi or Winnik could see a boost in fantasy value.
Fantasy Recommendation: Leave them on the waiver wire

Note: Matt Cubeta's weekly features (Center Stage, Turn Left Here and Right of Way) will return next week.
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