The Hampus Lindholm contract saga is finally over, and fantasy owners should waste no time in adding the possession-savvy defenseman off the waiver wire.
The 22-year-old, who signed a six-year contract with the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday, ranked fourth among defensemen in Shot Attempts (346) and first at his position in Shot Attempts Relative percentage (7.5; minimum 80 games played) last season. His possession success has enabled him to produce an extremely efficient plus-minus since entering the NHL; he's plus-61 in three seasons, second among defensemen behind Johnny Boychuk (plus-63) of the New York Islanders in that span.
Lindholm, 39 percent owned in Yahoo, should be scooped up in shallow fantasy leagues as soon as possible. He had a career-high 10 goals last season with solid coverage of all six standard fantasy categories. Many owners held onto Lindholm during his contract negotiations, but some may have been pressured to drop him if their team struggled over the first two weeks of the season.
The Ducks already have defensemen Cam Fowler and Sami Vatanen in their power-play equation, and Lindholm adds another dimension to the group. Last season, Anaheim had the top-ranked power play (23.1 percent) and was the only team in the League with three defensemen to finish with at least 15 power-play points (Vatanen 19, Fowler 17, Lindholm 15). Fowler and Vatanen played mostly on the first unit with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry, and Lindholm manned the second group.
Video: BOS@ANA: Lindholm's one-timer pads Ducks' lead
Despite Lindholm's absence, Fowler and Vatanen have picked up right where they left off. Through eight games this season, Fowler has five of his seven points on the power play and Vatanen has four of his six with the man-advantage. There's not much concern about Lindholm making the most of his minutes; he did plenty of damage last season despite averaging less power-play time (2:02 per game) than Fowler (2:59) and Vatanen (2:52).
The Ducks' first power-play unit has also been without center Rickard Rakell (12 percent owned), another restricted free agent who signed a contract Oct. 14. He had 20 goals and 23 assists last season, with 10 of his points coming on the power play. Rakell practiced Wednesday after joining the Ducks, but he is still recovering from abdominal surgery.
Read: Hampus Lindholm signs contract with Ducks
With Anaheim's restricted free agency issues finally resolved, the additions of Lindholm and Rakell should strengthen a power play that has performed well (22.2 percent; T-12th in NHL) despite the fact that the Ducks played six of their first eight games on the road.