DON'T HIT SNOOZE: Defencemen By Luke Garrison (Monday October 15th, 2018)
TORONTO—This is a new monthly segment on Puck&Field called "DON'T HIT SNOOZE" where we will focus on five sleepers who can potentially make your roster better immediately.
We're only a handful of games into the season but your fantasy team is probably already letting you down.
Let’s take a look at the latest crop of potential defencemen who could become the next great bargain. All of these players are less than 60% owned on the wire. The owned percentage and position eligibility for each player are from Yahoo fantasy sports.
Shea Theodore—Vegas Golden Knights (50% Owned) Pos. Eligibility: D
We'll start things off with a top pairing blue liner from Vegas. Theodore had a solid sophomore season posting six goals and 29 points through 61 contests and will look to build on those numbers this year. He's the only defenceman on a very potent top power play and has already shown an incredible amount of skill with the puck for a 23-year-old.
He's also played north of 21 minutes in four of his six games so far and his usage should continue to remain the same. He needs to be owned and started in deeper leagues despite his slow start to the season. Vegas will undoubtedly regress as a whole, but his point totals shouldn't.
Maxime Lajoie—Ottawa Senators (37% Owned) Pos. Eligibility: D
The rookie d-man has been a pleasant surprise for the Sens so far. The 2016 5th round pick has three goals and three assists through his first five NHL games and has even earned a spot on the second power play unit. In a season with not much to lose, the Sens figure to use him a fair amount.
He's averaging around 20 minutes per game despite being on the third pairing and he has nowhere to go but up as long as he keeps playing well. He won't keep up this pace but he's worth an add until he drops off if you're really in need of some D help.
Josh Morrissey—Winnipeg Jets (24% Owned) Pos. Eligibility: D
Although he hasn't registered more than 26 points in a season yet, he's in a good position to do so. He plays on the Jets' top defence pairing and also sees time on the second power play unit. Considering how high-powered Winnipeg's offence is, you'll want to take a piece if it's still available.
He's averaging over 23 minutes a night as well and it would be well worth your while to grab him.
Jeff Petry—Montreal Canadiens (23% Owned) Pos. Eligibility: D
Although he plays for a young rebuilding team like the Canadiens, the opportunity to produce will still be there. Shea Weber is out until roughly Christmas and there really isn't any better options to fill his spot outside of Petry. The Habs weren't good last year either but that didn't stop Petry from recording 42 points (23 of which were on the power play).
He plays around 23 minutes a night and already has four assists through his first four games. He's worth an add, especially since he's scored 20 goals from the point over the last two seasons. Goals from rearguards are often hard to come by.
Oscar Klefbom—Edmonton Oilers (21% Owned) Pos. Eligibility: D
He's a good bet to rack up points simply because he's consistently on the ice with Connor McDavid, both at even strength and on the power play. He's also recorded at least 200 shots in each of the last two years. He's a rock solid bet to put up at least 25-30 points while playing over 22 minutes a night.
How thin Edmonton is on defence is no secret and from a fantasy perspective, that's a usage goldmine for a player like Klefbom. Did I mention the McDavid thing?