The Flyers cleared out some valuable cap room by dealing Simon Gagne to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday for defenseman Matt Walker and a 2011 4th round pick. Gagne delivers a hefty $5.25-million cap hit – equivalent to Martin St. Louis – but if he stays healthy, Tampa may have one of the deadliest top lines in the game.
It’s our best guess that Gagne will find a home on the top line next to Steven Stamkos and Martin St. Louis, keeping Ryan Malone and Vincent Lecavalier on the second line to balance out the scoring. However, what’s even more attractive to fantasy owners is the potential to see Gagne, Stamkos, St. Louis, and Lecavalier all on the same powerplay unit. It’s no secret that Gagne has legitimate health concerns which makes him a risk in any draft but when healthy, Gagne should approach the .9-1.o point per game mark.
On the Philly side, besides adding an 8th defenseman with significant NHL experience, look for either James Van Riemsdyk or Claude Giroux to get a larger offensive role and become more fantasy relevant this season.