We’re one week away from the season starting! I have all of the excites. This post is going to be shorter since I covered a bunch of the recent developments around the league on Tuesday, but I’m going to hit on a few other things of interest in this post. Let’s get to it!
Immediately after signing a three year deal, the Lightning announced that Brayden Point will be out for most, if not all of October. Point still should be going around 50th overall despite the missing time. The interesting thing to note is that Patrick Maroon is taking his spot on the first power play unit for the time being. We’ve seen Maroon contribute offensively when given quality opportunities in the past, so I’m expecting him to get off to a hot start. Taking Maroon as your last pick in drafts as a streamer of sorts seems like a great idea.
Early indications are that Tyler Johnson is going to start the season with Kucherov and Stamkos. That makes Johnson a great value to open the season and should be taken in the middle to late rounds. Additionally, Anthony Cirelli is centering the second line. I’m a huge fan of Cirelli’s game as he scored 19+20 last season with almost zero PP time and under 15 minutes per game. Add him to the list of late round fliers.
Matthew Tkachuk signed a three year deal yesterday. One more restricted free agent deal in the books. Hopefully Rantanen, Laine, and Connor get done before the season starts.
Even though he’s… not good at hockey, Zack Kassian has the first crack at playing with McJesus and Draisaitl. That makes him an elite streamer to open the season, and worthy of a late round pick in banger leagues for the massive hits and penalty minutes.
For some reason unbeknownst to me, Aaron Ekblad has been getting first power play time in the preseason in place of Keith Yandle. I expect that to change quickly as Yandle is far superior to Ekblad on the power play. In fact, Ekblad is simply not good there at this point of his career. It’s just worth noting because it would impact their fantasy values, but it would be a huge mistake by Q to not use Yandle on PP1.
The Justin Faulk trade doesn’t make much sense to me from a Blues point of view, especially with the contract extension. Faulk has received massive PP time for Carolina over the last 5-6 years and has done little with it. I would have rather stood pat in the Blues’ shoes. This should eliminate any PP time for Colton Parayko. He’s fallen straight into the “better in real life than fantasy” category and should not be drafted. For Carolina, either Dougie Hamilton or Jake Gardiner will get PP1. I’m really hoping for Dougie as he could easily be a top 5 defenseman if that happens. Gardiner should be a solid 3/4 either way.
First crack at playing with Boeser and Pettersson appears to be Michael Ferland with J.T. Miller playing with Horvat. Personally, I’d rather Miller be setting them up instead of having a grinder like Ferland, but we’ll see if it even lasts. Ferland’s top six spot is virtually locked in making him a great value in banger leagues. This could help Horvat pile up more shots, although it is worth noting that they’re trying him on PP2 for now.
Nashville has blown up their top line from the past few seasons putting Kyle Turris on the wing with Filip Forsberg forming a line with Duchene and Granlund. That leads me to believe that Forsberg’s new line will get heavy offensive zone starts so I’d boost all of them up slightly in my rankings. Turris is given a prime opportunity to bounce back on the wing, but I have my doubts. I’m already low on Johansen, but this makes me somewhat concerned with Arvidsson. Not that much though, because his shot rate is truly elite and the goals will come with that.
That’s all for now guys. I’ll be back on Monday with a season preview. Be sure to check out Sven’s team previews for the time being. As always, feel free to ask any questions, leave any comments, or give any suggestions below. Thanks for reading, take care!