You’ll dominate this season with our fantasy hockey preview!
I’m going to go team by team and break down the players I love and hate for daily fantasy this season in my fantasy hockey preview. I’ll be pointing out the dandies and donkeys from each team along the way.
Dandies: Dougie Hamilton is coming off a season in which he did not live up to expectations. With only 7 goals and 18 assists many would consider him a letdown. He should see plenty of ice time with Zdeno Chara, and this can only lead to good things. There is no doubting this kid’s talent and another year, of experience will only help this 21-year old.
Overlooked fantasy players on this team are Patrice Bergeron and Milan Lucic. Lucic is a mainstay as a cash game play as he is very consistent, and when he is not scoring goals he is not afraid to drop the gloves. This is an extremely useful trait for cash games as he always finds a way to contribute.
Tampa Bay Lighting
Dandies: Jonathan Drouin is a STUD. Playing alongside Steven Stamkos and Ryan Callahan is a gold mine for points. Drouin tallied 105 points in 49 games last year in Halifax, and proved why he was the #3 overall pick. If he produces 1/3 of those numbers he will be a great fantasy player. I can’t wait to watch this kid play.
Donkeys: Ondrej Palat had an outstanding rookie campaign where he compiled 59 points. I believe in Palat as a player but with the addition of Jason (Boom) Garrison and Jonathan Drouin, Palat will see his time on the team’s 1st power play unit disappear. Any time you take time away from skating with Stamkos that’s going to hurt production.
Dandies: Brendan Gallagher is being raved about by the coaching staff. I believe he will play RW on the top line for the Habs. With the defensive attention on Pacioretty, Gallagher should have plenty of open ice to work with. I can’t say that I have seen him play too much, but everything I read points to a productive season.
I seem to rarely play anyone on Montreal outside of defensemen and Carey Price. The scoring is pretty spread out throughout the team and this makes it tough for daily fantasy players.
Detroit Red Wings
Dandies: Pavel Datsyuk/Henrik Zetterberg are two guys I am going to group together as I believe they will be somewhat forgotten by the casual NHL fans. What these two have done together throughout their careers is simply amazing. Injuries plagued this entire team last year, and I’m counting on a huge bounce back year. I will be rostering both on a regular basis and enjoy the consistency they bring. Look for whomever flanks these two studs to receive a huge boost in my daily plays.
Donkeys: Gustav Nyquist had a monster season last year. 28 goals and 20 assists in a mere 57 games. However, I am still skeptical. This is more of a gut feeling, but I think he will only see time on the team’s sub-par 2nd power play unit.
Dandies: Erik Karlsson. The list starts and stops here. I am worried about his production early in the season as he will need to do it by himself on this team. He’s an elite defensemen and the price tag will certainly reflect that.
Craig Anderson is a large tournament goalie I will often use. This team rarely has possession of the puck and this leads to a large number of shots against, which leads to saves. The upside is always there, but you really need to pick your spots as it often leads to goals against.
Toronto Maple Leafs
Dandies: James van Riemsdyk introduced himself to the world in the Olympics. Skating alongside his teammate Phil Kessel makes for a deadly 1-2 punch. Tyler Bozak often makes for a great play as he’s very cheap and centers these two on the top line. I like to target great opportunities to get assists with my value plays.
I hope that Morgan Rielly gets more ice time this year. He may be one of the top-5 skaters in the league. If he does see more time, it should lead to lots of chances on the offensive end. With another offseason under his belt I would like to believe he has developed more of a fundamental game and should see more ice time. The addition of Stephane Robidas will cut down Rielly’s ice time, but he may be impossible to keep down the depth chart if he lives up to the talent.
Donkeys: I’m not even sure what to say about David Clarkson. I just hope that David Booth will see time with Kadri and Lupol instead of him. Unlike Rielly, Clarkson is the worst skater in the league that I can think of. Every time I look he is off his feet, and I just don’t understand why they continue playing this guy.
Dandies: Jonathan Huberdeau is coming off an abysmal season after winning the Calder trophy in 2012-2013. There is finally some talent around this young man, and I’m expecting a big comeback. Nobody in their right mind doubts this guy’s talent.
Aaron Ekblad was the first overall pick in this year’s draft, and all of the reports are extremely high on him. I just can’t wait to watch him and this entire team play. This is the most exciting time to be a Panthers fan that I can remember.
Donkeys: Jussi Jokinen is getting a major downgrade in line mates. Without the luxury of skating with Malkin and Neal his production will certainly decrease.
Donkeys: THE ENTIRE TEAM is awful. I don’t know how else to say this. Don’t play any of them. They are just that bad. I feel like I have wasted too much time on this team already.