Fantasy Hockey Coach - Hockey Pool and Keeper Hockey Advice - The Press Box July 31, 2012

  • The Press Box July 31, 2012

    30 NHL Breakout, sleeper picks, and comeback players

    It is the dog days of summer in the off season so today i will look at each of the 30 teams potentially best candidate to have a major increase in fantasy production. There are often a variety of reasons that lead a player to having a break out, trade, injury, or they just command an increase role on their team cause they are that damn good.

    For what ever the reason, here is the top player from each team.

    Anaheim - Cam Fowler becomes the Ducks offensive leader on the point and will quarterback the powerplay in Anaheim. 40+ would only be a 11 point gain. Is 50 points attainable?

    Boston - Tuukka Rask becomes the undisputed starting goalie on the power house Bruins and is poised for a 30 + win season and elite status.

    Buffalo - Marcus Foligno had a mid-season call up and forced his way on the roster permanently. There is plenty of competition in Buffalo, but he could stick in a top six role.

    Calgary - Roman Cervenka was signed out of the KHL, and allowing Olli Jokinen to leave opens the door for Cervenka to play with Iginla on the top line.

    Carolina - Jordan Staal is no longer in the shadows of Crosby and Malkin. Staal will be thrust into a more offensive role and will now be supported by Alex Semin.

    Chicago - Andrew Shaw already came out of nowhere last season after a call up where he forced his way onto the roster on a regular basis by scoring goals. With Hossa expected to miss the start of the season, Shaw will have a chance to make an impression.

    Colorado - Steve Downie saw his ptsPG increase from 0.51 to 0.65 after he was traded from Tampa Bay.

    Columbus - Jack Johnson saw his ptsPG rise from 0.39 to 0.67 after being traded from L.A. Often defensemen simply need to be the number one and JJ is now "the man" in Columbus.

    Dallas - Jamie Benn is hoping Jaromir Jagr will be the catalyst for his breakout the way he was for Claude Giroux in Philadelphia

    Detroit - Jakub Kindl and Brendan Smith should both make the team after the loss of Nicklas Lidstrom and Brad Stuart.

    Edmonton - Magnus Paajarvi has been forgotten and lost in the shuffle, but the Oilers have not given up on him. He only scored 8 points last season and has far too much skill not to bounce back.

    Florida - Peter Mueller is a high risk, high reward player. If he is healthy he could return to his 54 point rookie season level.

    Los Angeles - Slava Voynov managed to score 20 points in 54 games in his rookie season. His play was solid and he will only get better.

    Minnesota - Mikael Granlund was already a Calder favorite. The addition of mega-free agents Zach Parise and Ryan Suter provide Granlund with nice support and insulation.

    Montreal - P.K. Subban is in his fourth season, the typical breakout season. After posting 36 and 38 points in his last two seasons this could be his year to eclipse the 40 point mark.

    Nashville - Ryan Ellis will play in Ryan Suters vacant spot on the power play along with Shea Weber and pile up fantasy points.

    New Jersey - Mattias Tedenby will be the main benefactor of the Parise loss. His offensive skills could see him playing on Kovalchuks line.

    New York Islanders - Kyle Okposo could replace Parenteau alongside John Tavares on the Islanders top line if he can stay healthy and commit. 60+ points is attainable.

    New York Rangers - Chris Kreider was off limits in the Rick Nash trade. Now he may play on a line with Nash and Brad Richards. A serious Calder contender with 50 point potential.

    Ottawa Senators - Guillaume Latendresse has not been healthy enough to play more than 55 games in the past three years. If healthy he could score 50+ on a line with Kyle Turris and Daniel Alfredsson

    Philadelphia - Jakub Voracek is penciled in to play in Jagr's spot on the top line with Claude Giroux. Voracek could finally make the jump from 50 point player to 70 point player.

    Phoenix - Oliver Ekman-Larsson emerged in the second half of the season and playoffs as the number one defenseman in Phoenix. His play has made Keith Yandle expendable. OEL may have an Erik Karlsson like offensive breakout.

    Pittsburgh - Eric Tangradi has the size and skill to surpass Matt Cooke on the second line and play alongside either Sidney Crosby, or Evgeni Malkin. He only scored 2 assists in 24 games last season, but he is ready for a larger role.

    San Jose - Marc-Edouard Vlasic had 36 points in his rookie season. After scoring seven points in three games earlier last season it looked like he was ready to breakout, but only finished with 23 points. He has the skills to surpass his 36 point career high.

    ST. Louis - Jaroslav Halak had a disappointing start to the season, and Brian Elliott played way over his head. Halak found his game once Hitchcock became Coach, and Elliott fell apart in the playoffs. The Blues could be Presidents Trophy winners and Halak could rack up 30+ wins and 10+ shut outs for the defensively strong Blues.

    Tampa Bay - Anders Lindback found it hard to start playing behind Pekka Rinne, but he is now the starting goalie in Tampa and will start upwards of 50-60 games and should be within 30 wins.

    Toronto - Jake Gardiner played his way onto a crowded Leafs blueline and had a 30 point rookie season. His play continued to improve as the season progressed and there is no end in sight to that trend.

    Vancouver - Corey Schneider has outplayed Roberto Luongo for the starting role in Vancouver. If Luongo is traded or not, Schneider is now the starter. 30-40 wins are in his future for the foreseeable future.

    Washington - Mike Green won a lot of people their hockey pools not too long ago when he was dominating offensively. Injuries have set him back and he falling off the radar. That is a mistake. Look for Green to comeback with a vengeance and return to 60-70 point form

    Winnipeg - Alex Burmistrov has the skill to produce offense, and the Jets can use that. Can he commit defensively and play more physically to earn the ice time required to improve over last seasons 28 points? If so 40-50 points could be achieved.

    Fantasy Hockey Coach Dynasty Keeper League
    We still have room in the Keeper League we are starting, register and post in the forum that you are interested. Keeper League home page. Send $10 entry fee via paypal to [email protected] Space is limited!

    By Peter Harling
    Follow me on Twitter @pharling
    Comments 4 Comments
    1. Aaron Brouwer's Avatar
      Aaron Brouwer -
      I think Foligno is going to have a very strong year and looking forward to seeing what he can do.

      It's finally Smith's turn in Detroit and if his 14 games last year are any indication of his potential he is going to be a stud!

      Get Green now if you can his value is at all-time low, but with new offensiveminded coach in Washington and with him being healthy he is due for a huge bounce back!
    1. Coach Perry's Avatar
      Coach Perry -
      I agree with many of these, but I think Magnus Paajarvi will need a change of scenery to have much of a season. Not sure if he can steal more than 5-6 minutes a game if he goes head-to-head with Hall, Eberele, Nuge, Gagner, Smyth, Hemsky, Yakupov (if he cracks the line-up) and perhaps Omark for ice time.

      Also, I could see Oliver Ekman-Larsson's evolution being further delayed. The 'Yotes have been decimated up front this offseason. Lack of scoring always hurts offensive defensemen. Karlsson played with Spezza, Michalek and Alfredsson. If Doan moves on, OEL will be on a team where the only player to crack 40 points last year was Keith Yandle. Now, if Yandle gets moved for some offense and a few of the kids step up I whole-heatedly agree with you.

      Also love the Okposo pick. Hope he steps up this year. I always enjoy seening guys who are mishandled succeed in spite of their surroundings.
    1. Coach Pharling's Avatar
      Coach Pharling -
      Good point on OEL. I expect that with all the D in Phoenix, and the young up and coming talented defense they have coming, a yandle trade is coming. Yandle for Krejci makes sense to me. Boston moving Krejci opens up a spot for Seguin to assume first line centre.

      Paajarvi is a risky pick for sure, but like I said above; he only scored 8 points so not too much of a stretch to say he could improve significantly over 8 points.
    1. Coach Dickenson's Avatar
      Coach Dickenson -
      I like the list a lot... some I'm teetering with... but the only one I flat out disagree with is Guillaume Latendresse.
      Attitude, injury prone and physical conditioning are three huge red flags to overcome... could happen, but I'm more inclined to think he's on his last legs in the NHL.
  • BIG LEAD - 160Wx600H Ad ROS