Hey everyone! Reid and I are back with the second part of our Atlantic Division season preview. Will any of the teams break into the playoffs this year? Can Bergeron and Marchand repeat their excellent 2015-16? How good is Erik Karlsson and how poor is the rest of the team around him? Will Carey Price return to form and how big of a downgrade is Shea Weber from P.K. Subban? Can Jack Eichel and the rest of the Sabres finally make a push? Are the Maple Leafs going to be in the basement again? All that and more is covered below:

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After a surprising run to the playoffs in 2014-15 that included a playoff series win (thanks to the horrible playoff system the NHL has), the Calgary Flames quickly regressed last season finishing completely out of the playoff picture. So which team are they? While two seasons ago was a clear fluke, I think this team is much closer to that team now, with two years of growth for their young core. They finally have a goaltender that they should be able to count on as well. They don’t have a lot of players that should be drafted in 12’ers but they’re all studs or carry plenty of upside. Let’s take a look!

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Yikes. That’s the first word that comes to mind when I think of the Vancouver Canucks. After years of making the playoffs and being one game away from a Stanley Cup, the Canucks are starting a rebuild. Granted, they still have a very good first line but otherwise the roster is full of young guys and players who aren’t fantasy relevant. My early pick to finish last in the NHL, there are no teams in the league with fewer fantasy assets than the Canucks. That said, there are still some guys worthy of being drafted in standard leagues so let’s take a look at what they’re working with:

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It took the Oilers getting incredibly lucky to win the Connor McDavid sweepstakes to give the franchise a sign of life for the first time in at least half a decade. While their 2015-16 was a failure, the young studs all looked great, especially McDavid who had over a point per game in his 45 games. Then in a draft with three studs, they ended up getting one of the three picking fourth (well done Columbus). I don’t want to say they erased it all with one move because McDavid is well on his way to being the best player in the league but then Peter Chiarelli traded Taylor Hall, an elite left winger, for a second pair defenseman. At least the defense will be better! After McDavid, there are a few fantasy assets and a lot of question marks; let’s take a look!

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We are through the first week of football which means it’s time for hockey to take the forefront. The season starts a month from today so it’s time to pick up the pace on everything, including my rankings. Today I’ll be getting through the top 150, the players that make up the middle rounds of standard drafts. After this group, we’re looking at very few players who are must-draft in 12’ers. Here are the links to the top 50, 75 and 100. Remember, this is the point in the draft where you start drafting for need instead of best player available. If you’re short on shots, get one of the guys who takes a ton. If you need penalty minutes, get someone who spends his time in the sin bin, etc. Let’s get to it!

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Hey guys! The Razzball Hockey Podcast is back! Our newest commentator Reid is joining me to take a look at the Atlantic Division. We go into so much detail that we only cover three teams! In this episode, the two of us take a deep look into the playoff teams from the Atlantic, the Panthers, Lightning and Red Wings. Can the Panthers young guns repeat their season or even improve? Will the Lightning remain an offensive juggernaut? Who on the Red Wings are worth drafting and can they keep the playoff streak alive? That and more below:

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The Dallas Stars surprised a lot of people last season winning the Central Division with 109 points. They made it to the second round of the playoffs losing in 7 to the Blues without superstar Tyler Seguin. Now, there’s hope that last season was just the beginning. While the forwards remain loaded, there are additional question marks on defense now and they still have the goaltending duo that led to their demise. Let’s take a look at what they’re working with:

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After years of playoff struggles, the St. Louis Blues finally made a deep run into the playoffs in 2015-16, losing to the San Jose Sharks in the Conference Finals. This offseason, they lost their captain in free agency and traded one of their goaltenders while making only one minor signing. Health and true breakouts for the young cores will largely determine their fate this season. Let’s take a look at the Blues roster along with their top prospects:

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Eichel v Matthews.

Matthews v Eichel.

You’re probably asking yourself, “Why the hell is this even an article? And is this going to be a Zack Snyder movie coming to theaters in 2017?”

The answer is pretty simple. I’m a sucker for blistering hot takes. The bravado that goes into them just revs my engines. And no, this won’t be a movie coming out next year.

So what hot take am I referring to? Well it came from an anonymous Canadian team scout in a National Post article earlier this year:

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For the first time since 2007-08, the Chicago Blackhawks were quite mediocre. Yes, they finished with 103 points but they had a negative goal differential at even strength. That’s simply not going to get it done and at this point, the Blackhawks are out of the first tier of teams in the NHL. It sounds crazy to say with the stars they have but man, the roster is incredibly thin after the top few guys. For fantasy, there’s not much in terms of value plays but if you’re willing to spend a high pick, you’ll have your choice of some studs. Let’s take a look at what Chicago is working with:

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