Hello everyone! I am Sven, and this is my first time contributing fantasy hockey material to anyone other than three or four friends who care to listen. I am a third year university student studying Sports Administration, and have an intense thirst for knowledge surrounding the NHL and all of its players. Though I typically root for the Bruins, I will watch just about any hockey game on TV (including lots of Arizona/Vancouver games while studying late at night).
Over the next month, I will be taking a look at each team’s players to watch out for going into the 2018-19 fantasy hockey season: The 31 in 31 daily segment. This analysis features everything from surefire studs, to sleepers, to prospects that may make an appearance at some point this season. Please let me know if you guys enjoy this type of material!
Without further ado, here is my initial analysis of the Anaheim Ducks (numbers are last season’s totals):
Rickard Rakell – 77GP 34-35-69. There is no doubt Rakell will be able to re-create his point totals from last season. However, I anticipate he will be the lone bright spot on an Anaheim forward corps that is slowly deteriorating. Considered a safe pick in any league.
Ryan Getzlaf – 56GP 11-50-61. Will continue to be PPG player when he is healthy. High risk, high reward drafting him.
Ondrej Kase – 66GP 20-18-38. Potential sleeper? It would be great for the Ducks if Kase was able to break out this season. In the limited footage I have seen of him, he has pushed the pace of play with and without the puck. He has a history of putting up points in both Czech U18 (76 in 60GP) and U20 (39 in 32GP), however this production will not happen right out of the gate. This will be his second full-time season with the Ducks, so keep an eye out for this former seventh round pick.
Adam Henrique – 81GP 24-26-50. After being acquired midway through the season from New Jersey, Henrique showed plenty of upside in the centre role for the Ducks. He historically hovers somewhere between 40-50 points, so look for him to go on a hot streak or two.
Corey Perry – 71GP 17-32-49. It is very unlikely to see Score-y Perry back in his 2011 prime where he put up a 50-48-98 campaign. However, he could be a potential streaming target in deeper leagues. He seems to be slowly dropping off, but I don’t think a 50-point campaign is out of the question.
Ryan Kesler – 44GP 8-6-14. Despite only appearing in half of the previous season’s games, I believe the 34-year-old bonafide villain can have a bounce-back year (now that he does not have to hide from Max Domi). Though the team is deep at centre, an injury to either Getzlaf or Henrique will benefit Kesler. However, he may be the one that gets injured, especially if he keeps calling out other NHLers over Twitter (Ryan Johansen). He is certainly not the player he used to be, but if he gets #2C minutes he could make for a decent streamer.
Cam Fowler – 67GP 8-24-32. Expect this minute muncher to continue to receive plenty of powerplay time, and thus time to produce points. In his first 5 seasons he has produced a consistent mid-thirties point total. I wouldn’t take him as my first defensive choice, however he is a solid pick somewhere mid-draft.
Brandon Montour – 80GP 9-23-32. With the departure of RHD Vatanen, expect Montour to receive lots of ice time in his second full season with the ducks. DailyFaceoff has him paired with Cam Fowler and manning the back-end on the team’s second PP unit.
Josh Manson – 80GP 7-30-37. With the RHD power play spots being occupied by Rakell and Montour, I would only advise drafting Manson in deeper leagues. He will receive a healthy amount of ice time, just not as many opportunities to put up points. Scoring will be spread out among this solid top 4, however it is PP time that will give Fowler/Montour the edge.
Hampus Lindholm – 69GP 13-18-31. Though Anaheim’s scoring from the back-end is fairly spread out among its top 4, Lindholm was able to tally the most goals among his blueline teammates. I do not see this as sustainable, so I will suggest a similar fate to Manson.
John Gibson – 60GP, 2.43GAA 9.26SV%. My guess is that John Gibson will earn every penny of that 8 year deal he just signed. Despite having a solid defensive corps in front of him, their lack of punch up front will leave Gibson to be the game-breaker night in and night out. This will be his third season as the designated starter for the Ducks.
Troy Terry – NCAA: 39GP 14-34-48. Despite failing to register a point in his first two games in the black and orange, Troy Terry may be able to provide this team with some much needed firepower. With the ability to play both wing and centre, the line mates he gels with will dictate his work load and production for the upcoming season. However, if you’re like my buddies and I and require a rookie selection in your league, he is a solid pick if you don’t get any of the big names.
Max Jones – OHL: 31GP 19-5-24. Jones is a big, strong forward I see working his way into the Ducks lineup at some point this season. With the ability to be an impact player and pump the puck into the net, I am excited to see what he’s capable of starting the season with the Gulls in the AHL.
Maxime Comtois – QMJHL: 54GP 44-41-85. Though Comtois is slated to light it up in the Q again this year, expect him to be competing for a spot on the team this fall. Another big body that can put the puck in the net at a staggering rate in major-junior, I expect him to fit in well with Anaheim’s play style.
Sam Steel – WHL: 54GP 33-50-83. Though a step back from his 2016-17 131-point campaign for the Regina Pats, Steel was still able to produce a monster amount of points in major-junior. The 2016 first rounder is expected to start the season in the AHL, though his scoring touch may bump him up to the big club.