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Fantasy buzz: Top 10 waiver wire pickups for Week 2

Shipachyov, Boeser, Hellebuyck emerge as valuable assets based on lineup placement

by Pete Jensen @NHLJensen / NHL.com Senior Fantasy Editor

Every Monday during the season, NHL.com will provide the top 10 players to add off the fantasy waiver wire. Based on Yahoo transaction data and other factors including production, lineup and/or injury trends, we have identified appealing options at each position for fantasy owners in season-long leagues.

 

FORWARD

Vadim Shipachyov, C/LW, VGK (40 percent owned) - Fantasy owners of the 30-year-old Kontinental Hockey League product were in a bind when the Vegas Golden Knights assigned him to the American Hockey League to start the season. But a few injuries led to Shipachyov's recall, and he has made an immediate impact with one goal and a plus-2 in his NHL debut against the Boston Bruins on Sunday. He's playing on the second line with Alex Tuch (RW, 2 percent) and first power-play unit with James Neal and could produce 45-50 points despite a late start to the season.

Video: BOS@VGK: Shipachyov scores in NHL debut

Dustin Brown, LW/RW, LAK (48 percent owned) -- The Anze Kopitar effect is in full force right now; Brown has scored at least one point in four of his first five games. The Los Angeles Kings' coaching change to John Stevens has led to an expanded role (19:31 per game) for Brown and some top-notch fantasy coverage: he has seven points (four goals, three assists), plus-6, 20 shots on goal, four penalty minutes and 19 hits (T-7th in NHL). He's quietly 17th overall in Yahoo based on standard-category performance.

Sean Couturier, C, PHI (23 percent owned) -- He has locked down an even-strength spot next to Claude Giroux and Jakub Voracek, taking some of the face-off burden off Giroux and showing some serious fantasy appeal in the process. Five games into the season, Couturier is among the top 50 overall fantasy assets (46th in Yahoo) with six points (three goals, three assists), a plus-8 and 15 shots on goal. He's only center eligible in Yahoo, but is covering four of the six standard categories well.

Sven Andrighetto, LW/RW, COL (12 percent owned) -- Playing in a top-line and first power-play role alongside mostly Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen since being traded to the Colorado Avalanche last season, Andrighetto has 22 points (eight goals, 14 assists) and six power-play points in 25 games. He has six points (three goals, three assists), three on the power play, with 13 SOG in six games this season, and warrants greater attention in all formats given Colorado's surprising start.

Video: COL@BOS: Andrighetto opens scoring from the slot

Brock Boeser, RW, VAN (11 percent owned) -- The rookie right wing was scratched in each of the Vancouver Canucks' first two games, but has been inserted into the lineup and is making a case to stay there for the long haul. He has points in each of his first two games, totaling one goal, one assist, one power-play point and six shots on goal. Playing on a line with mostly Bo Horvat and Sven Baertschi, Boeser has an outside chance to lead the Canucks in goals and/or scoring by season's end. The Canucks are tied with the Tampa Bay Lightning and Detroit Red Wings for the most games (four) this week.

Scott Hartnell, LW, NSH (18 percent owned) -- The Nashville Predators don't have much scoring depth, so Hartnell has taken advantage of a top-six and first power-play role with four points (three goals, one assist), three PPP, 13 SOG and his usual peripheral coverage of penalty minutes (18) and hits (10) through five games. Hartnell (47th in Yahoo) and Ottawa Senators center Derick Brassard (33rd in Yahoo) have the lowest ownership among Yahoo's current top 50 in standard leagues.

Others to consider: Bryan Rust, RW, PIT (17 percent); Derick Brassard, C, OTT; 20 percent owned); Alex Killorn, LW, TBL (13 percent owned); Jaromir Jagr, RW, CGY (19 percent)

 

DEFENSEMAN

Samuel Girard, NSH (3 percent owned) -- Nashville is dealing with injuries on defense with Roman Josi (lower body; day to day) and Ryan Ellis (knee; injured reserve) sidelined, leaving the door open for Girard to play power-play minutes and make an early fantasy impact. Whether Girard makes it past his nine-game NHL trial depends on the severity of those injuries, but, for now, Girard is on the first man-advantage unit with P.K. Subban and second pair with Mattias Ekholm. Girard, 19, has three points (one goal, two assists), one PPP and five SOG in three games. There isn't much to choose from on the defenseman waiver wire right now, so Girard is a dark-horse option worth monitoring.

Josh Manson, ANA (13 percent owned) -- Taking full advantage of time missed by injured defensemen Sami Vatanen and Hampus Lindholm, Manson has four assists, 12 shots on goal and is plus-4 over the Anaheim Ducks' first six games. He's playing on the top pair with Cam Fowler and is especially relevant in fantasy leagues that count hits (14) and/or blocked shots (11). He's a high-upside add for the long term, but keep in mind the Ducks play a League-low one game this week.

Others to consider: Anton Stralman (8 percent owned), Gustav Forsling, CHI (6 percent owned), Erik Johnson, COL (7 percent owned), Chris Wideman, OTT (6 percent owned)

 

GOALTENDER

Connor Hellebuyck, WPG (47 percent owned) -- Through four games (three starts), Hellebuyck has overtaken Steve Mason as the Winnipeg Jets' starting goaltender, stopping 104 of 111 shots faced (.937 save percentage). He's 3-0-0 but owned in fewer than half of Yahoo leagues despite his strong start. The Jets have the fewest back-to-back sets (nine) in the NHL this season, so he has the platform to emerge as a top-15 fantasy goaltender by the end of the season.

Malcolm Subban, VGK (17 percent owned) -- With starter Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion) being placed on injured reserve, Subban is expected to take on a heavy start volume for the Golden Knights. The 23-year-old stopped 21 of 22 shots faced in Vegas' 3-1 win against the Bruins. He's relatively unproven at the NHL level, but has a solid defense in front of him. With the goalie waiver wire extremely thin in deeper formats, Subban has instantly become a popular addition.

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