5 players who will lead you to a title this fantasy hockey season
Get ready for your season with theScore's fantasy hockey draft kit.
It's tough to win a fantasy hockey championship without a true superstar, but it's not impossible. Below, we identify five players to target this season who should be available later in the draft or if you get stuck with a late first-round pick.
1. Andrei Svechnikov, LW/RW, Hurricanes
2019-20 Stats: 68 GP, 24 G, 37A, 20 PPP
Yahoo! ADP: 17.0
Svechnikov had a breakout campaign in 2019-20, averaging nearly a point per game as a 19-year-old, and he's barely scratched the surface of his potential. The young Hurricanes winger carries a ton of value as a late-first or early second-round pick considering he's dual-eligible and is poised to see more ice time than the 16:44 he averaged last season.
He may not get full-time first-line duties alongside Sebastian Aho and Teuvo Teravainen, but he'll be a fixture in the top six and should be on Carolina's first power-play unit. On top of his raw stats, Svechnikov provides solid value for a scoring winger in banger leagues, registering 27 blocks and 116 hits last season.
2. Torey Krug, D, Blues
2019-20 Stats: 61 GP, 9 G, 40 A, 28 PPP
Yahoo! ADP: 70.6
Krug became a cornerstone player for the Bruins over the last seven seasons, and he shouldn't have an issue settling into his new role with the Blues. He'll get the opportunity to play top-pairing minutes thanks to Alex Pietrangelo's departure, and his power-play production shouldn't take much of a hit if he shares a man-advantage with the likes of Ryan O'Reilly, David Perron, and Mike Hoffman.
Several defenders are projected to fly off the board before Krug, giving managers a terrific chance to score some value in the middle rounds.
3. Igor Shesterkin, G, Rangers
2019-20 Stats: 12 GP, 10 W, .932 Sv%, 2.52 GAA
Yahoo! ADP: 49.7
Deciding when to take your starting goalie is always one of the toughest decisions in a fantasy draft. If you're on the fence with Shesterkin available, it would be wise to nab the Rangers' new starting netminder. His career sample size is small, but the 25-year-old put up incredible numbers in his brief rookie campaign and flashed the potential of becoming a bonafide No. 1. Don't be surprised if he's a hot commodity early in drafts.
4. Jake Guentzel, LW/RW Penguins
2019-20 Stats: 39 GP, 20 G, 23 A, 10 PPP
Yahoo! ADP: 26.4
Getting a superstar in a draft's first round is easy, but who you surround him with is the key to a championship run. Enter Guentzel, one of the top complementary pieces available. The Penguins' first-line winger registered 40 goals in 2018-19, then was having an even better campaign last year (0.51 goals and 1.10 points per game) before an injury cut his regular season short. Guentzel is one of the NHL's most underrated goal scorers and slots in beside Sidney Crosby at even strength and on the power play.
5. Taylor Hall, LW, Sabres
2019-20 Stats: 65 GP, 16 G, 36 A, 18 PPP
Yahoo! ADP: 53.5
Hall is coming off a lackluster season split between the Devils and Coyotes, and his 2021 fantasy value is being undersold. His situation is immensely improved by joining the Sabres as he's projected to ride shotgun with Jack Eichel at five-on-five. He's also playing under a coach he's familiar with in Ralph Krueger and can share a power play with Buffalo's aforementioned captain, Rasmus Dahlin, and Victor Olofsson. Hall is one of the top sleepers available this year, and you should snag him if he's available anywhere near the middle of your draft.
- Capitals' Carlson expected to play vs. Blackhawks after 36-game absence
- 'Every year there's something new': NHLers on hardest skills to master
- Marchand deletes Twitter, will return if he wants 'to make fun of someone'
- Senators sign Tyler Kleven to entry-level deal
- Report: Blackhawks nix Pride jerseys out of security concerns for Russian players