Each Wednesday at Today’s Slapshot, we’ll feature some of the top waiver-wire pickups for the week. Which players you choose for your team will depend on how deep your league is and whether the player is available.
Players might appear here because they are on a recent hot streak. However, we will consider both the player’s short-term and long-term potential, since many fantasy owners now play in keeper leagues. But a key to fantasy success is to be constantly monitoring your league’s waiver wire for players that will represent an upgrade.
We believe that the following players may help your team for various reasons.
Dylan Larkin, C, DET
The 15th-overall pick of the Red Wings in last season’s draft, Larkin made the team for at least a nine-game trial even though he was expected to be at least another year away.
So far he hasn’t looked out of place on a line with Henrik Zetterberg and the red-hot Justin Abdelkader. Larkin has four points (1g-3a) in three games, good for third on the Wings behind his two linemates. The center-eligible Larkin has been playing right wing, which is another potential advantage to owning him. Having picked up the NHL game quickly, Larkin appears to be a strong bet to stick around with the Wings.
Artemi Panarin, LW, CHI
Little was known before the season about Panarin, who was a KHL scoring star (62 points in 54 games last season). However, he has fit in quite nicely on a line with Patrick Kane and Artem Anisimov. Panarin has four points in his first three NHL games, including a three-point night on Saturday against the Islanders.
There’s always the worry that he will cool off at some point if Joel Quenneville juggles his lines, but he should be added at least not only for the short term, but also because he could be the real deal.
David Krejci, C, BOS
Largely ignored in fantasy drafts because of a Yahoo ranking that was barely in the top 200, Krejci is off to a fast start this season (3 GP, 2 G, 3 A). Krejci’s 2014-15 season was one to forget, as he was limited to 47 games due to a knee injury. This season he has found his form on a line centering young scoring star David Pastrnak and newcomer Matt Beleskey.
If you were able to snag him in the late rounds of your draft, your pick has paid off. If not, he’s still available in over half of Yahoo leagues.
Oscar Lindberg, C, NYR
Lindberg was named the NHL’s Second Star of the Week on Monday after scoring four goals over his first three games. Lindberg wasn’t a widely known prospect heading into the season, but he did score 28 goals for the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack last season. Ice time is a bit of a concern (only 10 minutes in his last game), as he is not currently in the Rangers’ top six. But based on his hot streak, he could be considered as a possible short-term add.
Jason Garrison, D, TB
Franklin Steele recently explained how Garrison is Tampa Bay’s under-the-radar scoring threat. This after Garrison exploded for two goals in his first game, followed by a shot from the point that resulted in an assist in his next game. You probably saw Garrison’s name as you were looking for the final defenseman to fill out your roster. He’s not an elite option, but that shot combined with his usual power-play time should make him a dependable option for your team.
Thomas Greiss, G, NYI
With no recent updates on Jaroslav Halak’s injury situation, Greiss is the Islanders’ starter for the near future. So far he has a win and an overtime loss in two games this season, posting a reasonable 2.46 goals-against average and a .915 save percentage that are in line with his career averages. Now that the Islanders are one of the league’s stronger teams, Greiss should be a short-term pickup for fantasy teams that could use help in net.