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The Wire Troll: Nick Foligno Filling the Stat Sheet

February 10, 2024 | By RotoRob | comment on this post
Nick Foligno has brought a lot of value to the Chicago Blackhawks.
Nick Foligno can help your team in several categories. (Jamie Sabau-USA Today Sports)

Welcome back to another week of Fantasy hockey. The All-Star break is done, leaving us with the home stretch ahead, so feel free to raid the waiver wire.

This week, Mikhail Sergachev underwent surgery on his broken leg and is out indefinitely; Jack Hughes (UBI) returned after missing 11 games; and Mason Marchment has $5,000 less to make it rain after bloodying Jake McCabe‘s face.

And now, let’s get to this week’s…

Fantasy Hockey Waiver Wire Picks

Nick Foligno, LW, Chicago Blackhawks (ESPN: 2.7 per cent; CBS: 2 per cent): It’s been over six years since we last checked in on Foligno, and he wasn’t exactly having a good season at the time. Still, he was better down the stretch and then enjoyed a couple of moderately more productive campaigns before more or less fading since. One of several players brought into to add a veteran presence for this young Hawks squad, Foligno seems to be the only one that’s working out and he’s enjoying a decent bounce back effort. With goals in back-to-back games and three of the last five, he’s once again topped double-digit tallies and, as always, is racking up plenty of hits and getting under his opponents’ skin (see video below). Foligno had been playing better before slumping in January, but is clearly emerging from that now, and the prospect of getting a chance to be on a line with Connor Bedard (expected back in a few weeks) gives us hope there’s even more value untapped to come. Obviously Foligno’s days as an major offensive force are behind him, but hey, if nothing else, his wife is apparently hotter than Taylor Swift (hopefully Corey Perry didn’t notice that before Chicago cut him).

Ice Chips

  • After finally breaking through as a full-time NHLer two seasons ago, Chad Ruhwedel has seen his role decrease significantly, making us wonder if the 33-year-old blueliner is on his last legs. He has managed to match his lofty 2022-23 goal total (with one), but his ice time is dwindling in recent weeks and he doesn’t supply much in the way of blocks or hits anymore. To Ruhwedel’s credit, he does what’s necessary to stay prepared, but it feels like he’s a hop, skip and jump away from hanging ’em up.
  • Brad Marchand scored five goals in four games before the break, then went scoreless in two straight. Well, he rectified that on Thursday with a shorty, giving him 25 goals for the ninth time in his stellar career. A huge January that included 11 goals in 14 games sure helped. Some just get better, not older.
  • Patrick Kane, who has missed the last seven games with an LBI, returned to practice for Detroit on Thursday and is expected to be back in action on Saturday. He had cooled off after a tremendous run in mid to late December, but is still averaging nearly a point per game despite suiting up just 19 times so far this season. Get Kane back in your lineup as soon as you can.
  • In his first start since the All-Star break, Marc-Andre Fleury stuck it to his original club, stopping 32 of 34 Pittsburgh shots (including a whopping 10 saves on the power play alone) to earn his ninth win of the season. He’s been on a sweet roll, going nearly a month since last saving under 90.9 per cent of the shots in a game. Yes, MAF is in the regression stage of his career, but no, even at age 39, he’s far from irrelevant, remaining a very useful Fantasy asset.
  • It’s been a long time coming for us to give some Fantasy love to Calgary’s Blake Coleman. Despite his current seven-game goalless drought, he’s already reached 20 markers for the first time since his Devil days. Since leaving Jersey, Coleman has more or less just been a source of secondary scoring, but this season he’s getting more PT than ever and has really responded, putting him on pace for his first 30-goal campaign.
  • As a three-time 25-goal scorer, Reilly Smith was acquired by Pittsburgh to add some punch, but he had gone 11 games without tickling the twine before potting one on Friday. Yes, he missed time last month with an UBI, put zero points in five games? Smith’s playmaking has helped out on the power play to an extent, but he’s been a big disappointment since coming to the Pens.

RotoRob Tune of the Day

Critically acclaimed David Bowie had such a huge influence on so many musicians with his innovations — especially in the ’70s. Among that era’s albums was Aladdin Sane, and the fourth single from this effort was a glam rock version of the Rolling Stones‘ classic “Let’s Spend the Night Together.”

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