Trade deadline, thy name is Nylander

If the Washington Capitals trade center Michael Nylander by tomorrow's deadline, his fantasy value is likely to spike

If the Washington Capitals trade center Michael Nylander by tomorrow's deadline, his fantasy value is likely to spike.

Since the Washington Capitals have relegated center Michael Nylander to a healthy-scratch sort of role, it’s difficult to know whether the 36-year-old Stockholm sensation is finished, buried on a winning team, or fueding with management.

For fantasy purposes, however, we must recall that Nylander was a point-per-game stud as recently as the 2007-08 season. In fact, in the three seasons from 2005-08, Nylander tallied199 points (60 goals, 139 assists) in 200 games. You read that correctly.

Yahoo!’s Puck Daddy has a terrific list of 30 players who will highlight the trade-deadline rumors of the next 24 hours. The Daddy points out that Nylander has a no-trade clause, which could limit Washington’s ability to peddle him.

Yet we wonder: Why wouldn’t Nylander — since the Caps clearly have no use for him — accept a deal to a team that would actually give him some ice time?

Because Nylander (seven goals, 20 assists, +3) has done nothing this season, he is only seven percent owned in Yahoo! leagues and — incredibly — 50.6 percent owned in ESPN leagues (which tells you how many ESPN users draft teams and promptly forget them). Still, our point is that Nylander is likely available as a free agent in your league.

By no means should you pick him up immediately; but add him to your watch lists. If he gets traded to the right situation, he could become a No. 2 center overnight.

photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

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