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Top fantasy players ranked for 2015-16 season
- Updated: August 1, 2015
The Hockey News ranked their top 200 fantasy hockey draft picks recently, and it’s no surprise who topped the list.
Sidney Crosby remains the top player in the league, and while his 28 goals and 56 assists in 77 games last season was considered a “down” year, he finished third overall in the league in scoring and led the NHL in points per game. A five-time 100+ point scorer, Crosby is easily the biggest offensive threat in the league.
The real X-Factor will be how Phil Kessel slots in with the Penguins. Ranked 14th on the list, Kessel has the potential to do some serious damage playing on the wing of either Crosby or Evgeni Malkin, who ranked eighth. Having Kessel, Malkin and Crosby gives the team some serious star power and plenty of options during 5-on-5 play and on the power play. It’s not far fetched to believe that Kessel could win the Rocket Richard Trophy this season if all goes well.
Ranking second on THN’s fantasy hockey list is John Tavares, whose point production has steadily increased over the past several seasons. Islanders GM Garth Snow has done a tremendous job building a contender around Tavares. Could Tavares reach the 40-goal, 90-point plateau this season for the first time in his career? THN seems to have high hopes for him.
Rounding out the top three is Alexander Ovechkin. Coming off two consecutive 50+ goal seasons, THN points out that Ovechkin could be more valuable as a fantasy asset than Crosby or Tavares if your league counts hits, shots—or both.
It should come as no surprise that Carey Price was the highest ranked goaltender at No. 9. The Canadiens led the league in goals against per game last season with a 2.24 average and could easily lead the league again this year. Their superb defensive play coupled with Price’s ability to steal games at will makes him a highly valuable fantasy asset—one that should be selected sooner rather than later in leagues that place a high emphasis on goalie stats.
Erik Karlsson tops the defenseman rankings, coming in at 21st overall. Karlsson has scored 20 or more goals in each of his past two seasons and has 60+ points three times in his six seasons with the Senators. The only surprise is that players like Taylor Hall and Ryan Johansen are ranked higher, especially considering Karlsson performs better on the power play.
Other surprises on the list include Connor McDavid, who enters the fantasy hockey guide as a rookie at No. 24—only two slots behind Jonathan Toews. After his 81-point campaign last season, Jakub Voracek couldn’t crack couldn’t crack the top 25, entering the list at 29, while 40-goal-scorer Rick Nash falls to 39.
Here are the top 25 from THN’s fantasy hockey player guide. For the entire list, click here.
1. Sidney Crosby, C
2. John Tavares, C
3. Alex Ovechkin, LW
4. Steven Stamkos, C
5. Tyler Seguin, C
6. Ryan Getzlaf, C
7. Jamie Benn, LW
8. Evgeni Malkin, C
9. Carey Price, G
10. Claude Giroux, C
11. Corey Perry, RW
12. Patrick Kane, RW
13. Henrik Lundqvist, G
14. Phil Kessel, RW
15. Vladimir Tarasenko, RW
16. Nicklas Backstrom, C
17. Tuukka Rask, G
18. Ryan Johansen, C
19. Tyler Johnson, C
20. Taylor Hall, LW
21. Erik Karlsson, D
22. Jonathan Toews, C
23. Sean Monahan, C
24. Connor McDavid, C
25. P.K. Subban, D