We have made it through another week of fantasy hockey, and there is plenty of news and notes that could have an impact on your fantasy hockey teams this week. Whether it is trades or injuries or even suspensions, staying up on trends in fantasy hockey will be huge in helping you have success with your teams this season. Let's take a look at some of the fantasy hockey trends you need to be aware of as the season continues to roll on.
New Coach in Tampa: Last week, we talked a bit about the Tampa Bay Lightning and a couple of their rookie skaters, mostly forwards Cory Conacher and Tyler Johnson. Well, there have been more developments on that front this week as Steve Yzerman made a coaching change. How may this affect your fantasy hockey team, you may ask? The new coach of the Lightning is Jon Cooper. He was the coach of their American League team and is extremely familiar with a lot of the rookies on this team, as they have won a championship together. This could be a big thing fantasy hockey-wise, at least in the short term as the coach puts his new systems in.
Trade deadline madness: We are just a week away from the NHL's trade deadline, and the big name that could be moved is Calgary Flames forward Jarome Iginla. Normally, trade rumors can affect a player negatively on ice, but in this case Iginla controls the entire process with the no-movement protection in his contract. If you are an Iginla owner, you should feel confident in playing him without fear of the trade talks adversely affecting his play.
Hurting in Pittsburgh: The Pittsburgh Penguins are the latest team to get hit by the injury bug. Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (undisclosed) left his game Tuesday night after getting knocked over late in the second period. Fleury did not return for the third period, and it would be a significant loss fantasy hockey wise if Fleury were to miss any time. In his absence, look for Tomas Vokoun to carry the load for the Penguins if Fleury can't go.
Richards turning it around: One of the more disappointing players this year in fantasy hockey is New York Rangers forward Brad Richards. For where you drafted Richards, you were likely hoping for a bit more offensive production than his five goals and 13 assists have provided. However, Richards has found the score sheet over the last couple games, contributing a goal and two assists. One thing we know about the Rangers forward is that he has the ability to go on a bit of a scoring run. If you have been holding on to Richards, hoping he would turn things around, your patience may be about to pay off.
That will do it for this week's edition of the fantasy hockey trends. Make sure you check back for the Fantasy Hockey Waiver Wire and the Fantasy Hockey Weekly Planner to make sure you are up to date on the latest news and notes to help you win your fantasy hockey league.
About Mike Corcoran
Mike Corcoran joined KFFL in 2011 as their senior fantasy hockey writer. The Tarrytown, New York, native hosts a hockey radio show on ESPN Radio in Tampa, and covers the Tampa Bay Lightning professionally.
You can follow Mike on Twitter @MikeCorcoranNHL
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