With the season less than a week away, it’s time to give some bold predictions.  I have 5 from JKJ that I’ll start with and comment on then italics before I do 10 predictions of my own.  Let me know your thoughts in the comments section on any of these!

JKJ’s Five Bold Predictions:

1) Philipp Grubauer finishes outside fantasy’s Top 10 goalies (standard formats). Riding the Colorado coattails last season and playing for an expansion team this season will catch up to him.

I have him ranked in the top 10 so from that standpoint, I disagree.  Goalies are voodoo though and anything can happen, but I have faith that Seattle will be sound defensively.

2) Tony DeAngelo pisses the hockey world off by scoring 50 points and being the most annoying league-winner in fantasy sports history. Carolina will thrive, and he’ll thrive because of it.

I’m all on board with this one.  If he stays out of trouble, 50 points is well within reach.

3) Jared McCann scores at least 65 points. I did him a disservice in my Seattle team preview, not diving nearly deeply enough. His expected goals metrics were almost off the charts last year and now he’ll be the C1 in one of the dopest uniforms in sports. I apologize to all who maybe steered clear of him at my behest.

I’m on the McCann bandwagon but I’m not sure he gets to 65 stats.  His underlying metrics were incredible last season, but he was also insulated by Crosby and Malkin.  I’m a little hesitant to assume that it’ll go as swimmingly in Seattle on the first line, but I hope so.

4) The Buffalo Sabres will have no players worth anything better than a stream. Despite saying in my team preview he is a potential bargain, Rasmus Dahlin will have no help and thus will be largely irrelevant. Jack Eichel likely won’t play a game at all, but I’d bet my family jewels he definitely plays zero in a Sabres sweater. It will be an absolute cesspool of fantasy nobodies.

As the resident Sabres fan, it’s hard to disagree.  I do think Dahlin ends up being worth owning topping 50 points, but the plus-minus could be a disaster.  It’s hard to see a forward becoming a hold.  Maybe Olofsson because of the shot volume?

5) Brady Tkachuk scores 25 goals and records 600 shots+hits. Everyone likes to fade him for his lack of points as a top-line LW, but people seem to forget hits are standard in Yahoo now and he will get 300 (while also shooting the puck on goal as many times, if not more.)

I think Tkachuk is actually a favorite to do this.  He’s been on pace for 25 goals the past few seasons with bad shooting percentages.  He could easily get to 30 goals and 300+ shots.

Viz’s Bold Predictions

1) Sam Reinhart smashes previous career highs, scoring 30+ goals and finishing over a point per game.  The Panthers should be excellent this season and the addition of Reinhart will do wonders for them.  He’s an excellent player that’s been stuck on a terrible Sabres team, and Barkov will help take Reinhart to another level.

2) Zach Hyman finishes over a point per game.  His 33 points in 43 games last season was the best pace of his career, so he’s got a long way to make up.  Getting to play with McDavid and possibly receiving even more minutes than he had in Toronto will make up for that.

3) Kappo Kakko takes the jump in year three, becoming a fantasy hold for most, if not all of the season.  His expected goals took a huge jump last season, but it didn’t end up resulting in points for Kakko.  This season, it will.  He’s locked into playing with Panarin and Strome which will make it difficult for him not to succeed.  This season, he ends up being a contributor instead of a passenger.

4) The team that won’t have a player worth holding is the Anaheim Ducks.  They’ve been so bad defensively the last two seasons that I don’t want to hold John Gibson.  I love the talent of Trevor Zegras and Jamie Drysdale, but I suspect they fall a little short of holding.  Zegras could definitely make this look bad because his talent is through the roof, but with a horrible supporting cast, I think he’s a year away from the true breakout.

5) Viktor Arvidsson scores 30 goals.  He has 25 in the past two seasons combined, granted he scored at least 29 in the previous three seasons.  I’m expecting a big bounce back for Arvidsson with Kopitar feeding him the puck.  The shot volume has been there, but Arvidsson hasn’t been as good at getting to the best shooting locations.  Kopitar will fix that.

6) Cale Makar has 85+ points, becoming the first defenseman to reach that total in 28 years.  It’s not a big increase in production from Makar, but sustaining over a full season instead of half of a season worth of games will be hard enough.  The Avs should be a juggernaut once again with Makar being a big reason for that.  He’s the favorite for the Norris and rightfully so.

7) Mike Smith regresses to being a fringe hold. I can’t buy into last season being sustainable for Smith after having a .902 and .898 the previous two seasons.  He’ll probably be good enough to keep for the wins, but it won’t be pretty.

8) The New Jersey Devils make the playoffs.  They haven’t sniffed the playoffs in recent seasons, but my love for Dougie Hamilton is well known in these parts.  Add in Graves, Tatar, Bernier, and the growth of the young players, and I think they can get one of the wild card spots.

9) Artemi Panarin wins the Hart Trophy.  McDavid is obviously the favorite, but Panarin has played at a 113 point pace in each of the last two seasons.  The Rangers are bound to take a jump this season towards making the playoffs to bring the necessary attention to Panarin.  You can get 26-1 at some books which I think is an incredible price.

10) The Florida Panthers win the Stanley Cup.  Their forwards and defensemen are both top 5 groups.  This is contingent on Spencer Knight being a viable starter right away.  Who knows, maybe Bob randomly finds his form again?  I’m counting on Knight though to play as well as he has at lower levels.  It’s an absolutely stacked division with four Cup contenders which makes their path even harder, but I love the build of this team.

That’s 10!  I’ll be back on Monday previewing the first week of the season.  If there’s anything else you want me to write about, please let me know.  As always, any questions, comments, or suggestions, please leave in the comments section.  Thanks for reading, take care!

  1. Shitwolf says:
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    thx for everything homie

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      No problem at all!

  2. Better Call Limehouse says:
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    look at this crazyness, seems too good (many picks when made were so just obviously easy while i saw all sorts of guys go way far ahead of anything close to ADP, i don’t think ADP is close to as stable in hockey as baseball (sample sizes obv likeliest biggest factor).
    7 kept: (hits/blocks/shots/goals/assists/points (extra in addition to goals/assists), PPP, faceoffs, PIMs/plus minus, for goalies normal 4 and goals against (h2h) as a negative

    – C (2): makinnon (K), trocheck (K)

    – LW (2): hintz (C, 8th, wasn’t kept by somebody who wanted to make sure he kept some MTL guys as he’s MTL guy), forsberg (11), c.stehenson (C/LW, 20th), n.ritchie (23rd)

    – RW: rantanen (K), konecny (12), comtois (LW/RW, 21st),

    – W (2): batherson (RW, 16th), t.meier (LW/RW, 18th)
    – F (2): couturier (10th), j.norris (14th)

    D (6): nurse (K), barrie (K), d.hamilton (K), chabot (13th, this is nutzo to have chabot as D 4 seems such), pulock (19th, and pulock this late), c.murphy (22nd), ferraro (24th, if only he shot more, but i know how useful murphy/ferraro are in hits/blocks leagues from 16-20 teamers)

    util (1): hischier (17th)

    G (2): grubauer (K, 16 goalies kept, 2 more would’ve been drafted before me at 8.12 had i not kept him),ullmark (2nd, got ahead of the curve as i’m end of snake and i knew many would go before my next back to back picks, and i already have one of the weaker goalies kept situation), cal petersen (15th)

    – had i not taken ullmark where i did i could’ve gotten bob or hart almost 2 rounds later
    – when i noticed that i have chabot as D 4 i waited intentionally a long time till pulock and later c.murphy/ferraro, it was in this area that all the upside but unsure playing time guys went (bouchard, seider etc). it might be just me but chabot as a D 4 seems completely insane
    – people kept gifting me useful centers in a faceoffs league (hischier, couturier, c.stephenson, j.norris all cost less than they probably should’ve, and i almost got larkin instead of one of these)

    – just me or konecny, comtois (esp comtois), batherson, t.meier way too cheap?

    – i appear to built up a very large plus minus cushion with my keepers and earlier round picks such that the later plus/minus negatives (the OTT 3, meier, comtois, hischier) should be ok

    – did not overpay anywhere for hits/blocks or PIM’s specialists like some did (gudas, t.wilson etc) but still have a lot of them from many spots.

    – n.ritchie: does anybody at all notice he’s on TOR line 1, and PP2
    ? umm what am i missing here.

    • JKJ says:
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      This is a sick team lol. Great value on those wingers. Your D is unbelievable (that’s what she said).

      Ritchie doesn’t do much for me even as a top line guy in Toronto, but at that price why the hell not? You know he’ll hit and maybe some cheap points come of it.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      Damn, yeah that’s a stacked team. I really don’t see Ritchie staying there because he’s just not that good, but in the 23rd round, he is well, well worth the gamble.

      • Better Call Limehouse says:
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        im more used to 16-20 teamers start real life sized rosters so im more happy to have ritchie in those

        • Viz

          Viz says:
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          Oh yeah, no doubt. There is legit upside there, no denying it

  3. Steve says:
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    Thanks Viz you rock, go Devils!

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      No problem Steve! Things are looking up for the Devils!

  4. JKJ says:
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    Good stuff! Not quite as confident in Kakko, but if they give him a fair shake and let him ride the valleys as well as the peaks then maybe he’ll prove me wrong.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      I’m not super confident in it, but the underlying metrics definitely encouraged me as much as his opportunity.

  5. BringDaRuckus says:
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    I took a flyer on Jake Allen as my last goalie in my 10 team league but I’m debating dropping and picking up Cal Peterson. Does that seem wise? Or should I hold for now?

    Thanks

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      Hmm, that’s a tough one. If you’re looking short term, I prefer Allen, full season I think I’d lean Petersen. Considering he’s your last goalie, I think I’d just keep Allen.

      • BringDaRuckus says:
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        Thanks Viz!

  6. Gerald says:
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    Viz whats up my bro? how have you been? good to have hockey back

    would you consider stashing byfield and vrana on the IR

    think they can be a hold in a ten teamer?

    IN a goals assists points plus minus powerplaypoints hits GWG blovks league which 3 would you hold to start season? JKJ’s post has me thinking im pretty interested in mccann this year

    carter verhaeghe , JAred mccann chris kreider or alexis lafreneiere , travis konecny

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      Hey Gerald, I’m doing well, high on the Bills big win last night. Hope you’re doing well too!

      I could see it with Vrana, I don’t see it from Byfield this season. Vrana is out until February though so you wouldn’t be getting him back any time soon. If you have the room on IR, it’s fine to stash him, but I don’t think it’s automatic.

      Yeah, we are in agreement on McCann. I’m not quite as high as JKJ is, but he is the first line center and should perform. I think Verhaeghe is a hold to start because he was for most of last season. I’m torn on the third guy. I think I’d gamble on Laf, but I see the case for the other two.

  7. dubjay says:
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    Hey Viz,
    Just had my draft yesterday. I am sure that you can tell that I weighted your rankings heavily.
    1 (2) MacKinnon
    2 (23) .Tkachuk
    3 (26) D.Hamilton
    4 (47) S.Varlamov
    5 (50) N.Ehlers
    6( 71) S.Theodore
    7 (74) B.Boeser
    8 (95) J.Petry
    9 (98) J.Markstrom
    10(119)K.Fiala
    11(122)S.Couturier
    12(143)T.DeAngelo
    13(146)V.Trocheck
    14(167)O.Bjorkstrand
    15(170)C.Garland
    16(191)A.Khudobin
    Pretty damn happy with this squad. What do you think?

    • dubjay says:
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      Thats B.Tkachuk there at 23

      • dubjay says:
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        So my team now looks like this
        C-N.MacKINNON
        C-S.COUTURIER
        LW-B.TKACHUK
        LW-N.EHLERS
        RW-B.BOESER
        RW-K.FIALA
        D-D.HAMILTON
        D-S.THEODORE
        D-J.PETRY
        D-T.DEANGELO
        BENCH-O.BJORKSTRAND, C.GARLAND, V.TROCHECK
        G-S.VARLAMOV
        G-J.MARKSTROM
        BENCH-A.KHUDOBIN

        • Viz

          Viz says:
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          Love it! Hopefully Ottawa gets Tkachuk signed, I can’t believe that deal hasn’t happened yet. That defense is unreal in a 12’er and you have more than enough offense. Nice to Markstrom’s volume to balance out Varlamov’s lack thereof. I’d be happy with this team in a 10 man league, let alone 12.

          • dubjay says:
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            Yeah. My problem was my defense last season. Was chasing hits all season as well. Thats why I was more than happy to take Tkachuk at 23. I think that they have to sign him soon even though they have a moronic owner at the helm. He is just too valuable to this team

            • Viz

              Viz says:
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              Yeah, in a hits league, 23 is good value for sure. I can’t believe that it’s not done yet, he is the heart of the team. You would think even they couldn’t mess it up, but here we are.

  8. No Avatar says:
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    Sup man! I’ve been loving the content as always. I definitely took a few of your favorites for this season. Here’s my main team. League has normal cats plus hits, blocks, and pims and we added saves for goalies.

    Nathan MacKinnon
    Tom Wilson
    Sebastian Aho
    Max Pacciorety
    Elias Lindholm
    Zach Hyman
    Sam Bennet
    Kevin Fiala
    Dylan Larkin
    Victor Arvidsson
    Carter Verhaeghe
    Jeff Carter
    Tyler Johnson

    Josi
    Letang
    Chabot
    Barrie
    Romanov
    Gudas
    Forbert

    IR Jack Eichel
    IR Evander Kane

    Demko
    Knight
    Ullmark

    I took all three of my goalies round 16 and after. I even took chances on Eichel and E Kane before taking a goalie. Let’s go Zach Hyman!!!

    Good luck with all your teams this year.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
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      Hey man, thanks for the compliment! Those are pretty sweet goalies waiting until round 16! Sign me up for that if possible. The team looks damn good across the board. I probably wouldn’t have taken both Eichel and Evander that early, but I don’t hate the gamble because the odds of you finding someone that moves the needle in the middle rounds is hard and those two could be needle movers. I just don’t see Eichel playing under after the Olympic break and who knows with Evander. Even if you get nothing from them, your team looks plenty good.

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