The Colorado Avalanche, clinging to Stanley Cup Playoff position, made a trade to improve their top-six forward group.
The Avalanche acquired forward Mikkel Boedker in a trade that sent veteran Alex Tanguay to the Arizona Coyotes. Tanguay was playing right wing on a line with Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog prior to the trade, so fantasy owners can expect Boedker (LW/RW, 21 percent owned) to slot into that role immediately. He is worth owning in deep leagues.
Boedker ranks outside the top 200 players in Yahoo leagues but has two hat tricks this season, a career-high 18 power-play points, and is on pace for the most single-season shots on goal of his career (144 through 62 games). He has been with the Coyotes since entering the NHL in 2008-09, with his best season coming in 2013-14 (19 goals, 51 points)
On the peripheral front, Boedker has two seasons of 100-plus hits in his career, but has taken a step back in that category this season (44). He has also never had more than 20 penalty minutes in a single season and has the third-worst plus/minus (minus-28) League-wide this season.
Although Boedker has one goal in his past 27 games, the Avalanche view him as an upgrade to Tanguay and will incorporate him into one of their top two lines alongside their speedy, skilled centers.
MacKinnon, who has bounced back after an underachieving, injury-plagued sophomore season in 2014-15, is 42nd among all fantasy players based on standard-league performance but has points in two of his past seven games. He had a goal, an assist and three SOG in the 2016 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series game against the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday. MacKinnon is eighth in the NHL in SOG (220) with 16 PPP.
Matt Duchene, 71st in Yahoo's rankings, is approaching his career high in goals (27 in 2010-11) with 26 through 64 games this season. He's another high-volume shooter who plays on the power play and can aid Boedker's rebound if they play together. Duchene has been centering a line with Mikhail Grigorenko and Jarome Iginla in recent weeks.
There's a great chance Boedker will be playing with MacKinnon and/or Duchene at even strength and also seeing time on the power play for Colorado, so this is a much more promising spot than his previous one on Arizona's second line alongside mostly Antoine Vermette. The Avalanche have 18 regular-season games remaining, so Boedker is certainly worth adding after his change in scenery.