Fantasy hockey trade reaction – Ryan O’Reilly to the Maple Leafs

Without question, the Toronto Maple Leafs are a stronger team on Saturday than they were just an hour before. By acquiring Ryan O’Reilly from the Blues – in a deal that also included NHL forward Noel Acciari – the Leafs inherited a natural leader, passionate competitor, Cup-winning experience, skilled faceoff performer, effective penalty killer, and one of the two better. -route centers in the game. All good things. However, how excited (or not) should fantasy managers feel about the 32-year-old? A lot depends on how O’Reilly fits into Toronto’s lineup. As ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski explained in his latest Trade Grade, the former Blues captain has been having an unremarkable campaign so far.

“… Offensively, O’Reilly’s 19 points in 40 games is an all-time low, giving him an average of 1.5 points per 60 minutes for a player who has averaged less than 2.0 points per 60 since 2010-11. Help O’Reilly vs 60 minutes (0.6) Dropped significantly from last season (1.5) It’s not that O’Reilly doesn’t want to prove, it’s because he hasn’t had a player like David Perron to create those chances converted after leaving for Detroit as a finalist. free agent. Again, going from the 18th best offensive team in the NHL to the eighth best should help. …”

He will. But how much depends on whether the Conn Smythe winner (2019) focuses on the third line of the Leafs or whether he falls within the top six on the wing alongside John Tavares and Mitch Marner. As a Fantasy asset, he sports more value at the former position than the latter. However, those who run the Leafs, from above and at the ice level, do not care about your fantasy team or mine. In fact, strengthening the team down the middle by sticking O’Reilly in the middle on the third line could prove to be the overall improvement for a team that desperately needs to win a playoff run. We’ll see.

That said, I’m still picking up the versatile forward — still available in 53% of lineups — in deeper fantasy competition. Almost a point/game player just two years ago, he will score, whether from the third line flanked by the likes of Calle Jarnkrok and Pierre Engvall, or on the power play, or – ideally with a fantasy view – on the turn. the wing aside Tavares. O’Reilly is also going to face forward, play heavy minutes, and score the odd shorthanded point. Well, he’s worth a roll of the fantasy dice with one of the league’s more productive sides.

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