For my last scheduled post outside of the bracket challenge for the next few months, I’m going to review my bold predictions from before the season. My goal was to get three or more, did that happen? Let’s find out! For those that want to read the entire post, click here.
1) Evgeni Malkin leads the league in points. And a massive whiff to start! Malkin was injured a lot (what else is new) and wasn’t as good as usual when he played. Even if he was, he was never catching McJesus.
2) The Chicago Blackhawks have the worst record in the NHL. This looked good for about one week. Then, Kevin Lankinen came in and stood on his head. He cooled off at the end, but Chicago was never a real threat to finish in last. They finished one game below fake .500 and were 24-32 overall. They were bad, just not that bad.
3) Tyson Barrie totals 50 points. This one is still up in the air! Barrie would need two points in his last game to get there. As discussed on Wednesday’s undervalued post, I said that if someone outside of the top tier was going to lead defensemen in points, it would be Barrie. Well, Barrie did end up leading the league in points for a defensemen. That’s good enough of a win for me.
4) Andrei Svechnikov finishes in the top three in goals. Even though Carolina was incredible, Svechnikov was a disappointment. He finished with only 15 goals. That said, I still believe in his ceiling long term.
5) Aaron Ekblad sets a new career high in points despite the shortened season. He probably would have fallen just short, but an injury ended his season prematurely. Regardless, the thought process was sound here as Ekblad was fantastic for the Panthers from start to finish.
6) The Dallas Stars miss the playoffs after making The Stanley Cup Final last season. One that was correct without a doubt! It came down to the last week of the season, but injuries and the COVID layoff at the beginning was too much for the Stars to overcome. Bishop never returning and Seguin coming back in the last 10 days of the season didn’t help their cause either.
7) The Calgary Flames win the North Division. Moving on….
8) The Sabres have a top three power play. This doesn’t look as off base if you simply look at the finishing rankings for power plays. When Jack Eichel went down for the season, the Sabres were actually second in the league in power play percentage. Obviously it ended up being incorrect, but it’s not a complete loss with how the team played in the first half of the season, specifically before their long COVID hiatus.
9) The Arizona Coyotes, despite being in contention for a playoff spot up until the very end of the regular season, will have zero skaters worth holding. Well, the first half of this was correct at least. The Coyotes were one of the last teams to be eliminated from the playoffs. However, the hold part couldn’t have been more off. I said it would Jakob Chychrun to not have his breakout for this to be correct, and, well, he had more than a breakout. He’s a borderline top 10 defenseman now. Conor Garland was a hold for the majority of the season, Phil Kessel was for large chunks, and there were other skaters who had some time as a hold e.g. Christian Dvorak in the first month. Arizona had more offense than anticipated, and it will be interesting to see what happens with a new coach at the helm.
10) None of the three Calder favorites wins the trophy. Well, two of the three favorites won’t be a finalist for the award. The problem is that Kirill Kaprizov is clearly going to win, all due respect to Jason Robertson. Kaprizov was better than the lofty expectations placed on him which is quite remarkable. He changed the entire trajectory of the Wild organization going forward.
Alright guys, that wraps up the 2021 Fantasy Hockey season. I’ll get a post up on Friday afternoon for the bracket challenge for all of those interested, but otherwise, this is the last you’ll be hearing from me for a while. I’d like to thank everyone who reads my posts, and keeps the comments section busy (I know it died off a bit when baseball started, which is to be expected as the hockey season wraps up and there’s less to manage). The kind words that people write make me want to keep doing this so I want to reiterate that it’s greatly appreciated. If you have anything questions for me, be it 2022 fantasy hockey, dynasty leagues, general hockey, or anything else you want to ask, don’t hesitate to ask me below. Thanks for reading, take care!