Fantasy Hockey Coach - Hockey Pool and Keeper Hockey Advice - Changes in Leafland: Beauchemin for Lupul

  • Changes in Leafland: Beauchemin for Lupul

    Trade: Francois Beauchemin traded from the Toronto Maple Leafs to the Anaheim Ducks for Joffrey Lupul, Jake Gardiner and a conditional fourth round draft pick in the 2013 Entry Draft.

    Anaheim: Beauchemin is going back to the organization where he had the most success in his NHL career. He won a Stanley Cup with Anaheim and scored 21 goals and 88 points over the 234 games he played with the Ducks.

    Beauchemin does not have the elite offensive skills of a top fantasy defensemen but provides consistent scoring as a depth defenseman. He has struggled this season and was on pace for career low in points but who hasnít struggled playing for Toronto this season. Now that he is on a better team he will get back on track, which is averaging 25 to 30 points a season.

    Beauchemin will take some even strength ice time away from Cam Fowler, but donít expect him to bump Fowler off the powerplay. Bringing Beauchemin back should solidify the Ducks' defense, which has not been the same since Scott Niedermayer retired.

    Toronto: Toronto adds another goal-scoring wingerónot exactly what they need right now as they could use a playmaking center. Lupul played for Brian Burke back in Anaheim and was a key piece in the Ducks' Stanley Cup championship as he was traded for Chris Pronger.

    Lupul has the skills to score 40 goals in the NHL but lacks the consistency to score on a regular basis and it doesnít help that he is injury prone. Lupul is only 27 years old and we have not seen the best of him yet, but he will need to stay healthy to become an impact player.

    Lupul has a bad back and has had two back surgeries in the last two years causing him to miss 80 games. Lupul has also suffered at least two concussions during his NHL career making him a high risk.

    He will be given every opportunity to score in Toronto and could have a quick start with his new team. A healthy Lupul has the potential to be a 40-goal and 70-point player, realistically expect him to average 20 to 25 goals and 50 points a season. Howard Berger posted on Twitter that Lupul will start on a line with Tyler Bozak and Clarke MacArthur.

    Toronto also got Jake Gardiner in this deal and he could end up being the best player of this deal. Gardiner is a 6'2", 188 pound defenseman who is loaded with offensive ability. He was drafted in the first round of the 2008 draft, 17th overall by Anaheim.

    Gardiner was a member of Team USA when they won Gold in the 2010 World Junior Championship where he scored three assists and finished with a plus-nine rating. Gardiner is currently playing for Wisconsin in the WCHA where he has scored 13 points in 41 games and has a plus-23 rating. Donít worry if his offensive numbers seem low right now he has all the tools to be an offensive stud.

    The departure of Beauchemin creates an opening on the Leafs defense, so expect Keith Aulie to get an opportunity to play in that spot. Aulie has already played 12 games this season in the NHL but has zero points. Aulie is a giant on skates as he stands at 6'5" and 217 pounds. Aulie is a very physical defensive defenseman who will not have an impact on fantasy rosters.
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