This article is part of our NHL Waiver Wire series.
Ten NHL clubs just completed their mandatory rest period, with the rest facing an abbreviated break after the All-Star Game. While this respite will undoubtedly rejuvenate the players, it could also cause havoc in weekly fantasy formats. Imagine going head-to-head without 10 or more starters and not being able to sub out everyone. Sure, you could swap out the rest for those available and active, but you're not going to do this if the existing players are decent.
What options do you have? First off, don't do anything rash. If you're in contention, you should be looking toward the rest of the season and not panicking over a few weeks. So you may endure a brief downturn, but the goal is to come out on top at the end. Sacrificing solid skaters for temporary inferior ones won't help in the long run.
But cheer up! Some of your stars will soon return. Also keep in mind that of the 10 teams that were off this week, three of them – Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Winnipeg – will be playing four times next week. And there are quite a few top NHLers among that group.
As the point of this intro was to advocate rational decisions, the examples listed below do not take any of the bye schedule into account — because we only want to provide the best recommendations for our readers.
(Ownership rates/stats as of Jan. 24)
Frank Vatrano, FLA (Yahoo: 23%, ESPN: 9%, CBS: 11%):: Vatrano