LEFT WING

This is a preview of the content available in the 2016-17 Fantasy Projections spreadsheet, which you can purchase here for a reasonably small sum. By content, I mean the projections themselves. The spreadsheet contains no words or analysis about any specific player. If analysis is what you are interested in, you can tweet me a player’s name with #domplshelp and I will send you an appropriate response composed entirely of emojis.

Here are the projected top 10 left wingers for next season, sorted by points scored (read: not fantasy rankings as those depend on your scoring settings, something you can change yourself in the fancy spreadsheet).

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Jame Benn is arguably the best left winger in hockey, at least in fantasy hockey. Easily capable of a point-per-game as he’s surpassed that in the past two years and he’s a multi-category phenom. Like linemate Tyler Seguin, he’s very much a top five pick. His point total may seem low here considering his last two seasons, but it’s important to remember that these projections leave room at the top and bottom for error. Anything between 76 and 90 is fair game.

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There’s a big point total drop off after Benn, but Johnny Hockey is next up and he’s got legit point-per-game upside. The small statured forward lit the league on fire over the last two years and he’s only just getting started.

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This is probably a #hottake and one of the few projections that gives me pause. So much of Panarin’s scoring ability hinges on him playing with Patrick Kane and the two maintaining their electric chemistry. I doubt that changes this season, so he’s a relatively safe bet for more big production, but I’m not so sure about him being this high. The issue is that he’s only got one year under his belt and that’s all the projection can go off of. Even after regressing, he comes up with one of the highest projected points-per-60’s in the league. He’s got skill, but beware of the sample size.

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Not the biggest point-scorer anymore, but still the biggest goal-scorer. At age 30-almost-31 though, his days of scoring 50 may almost be over. The model thinks it’s more likely that he doesn’t hit the mark this year then does. Whether he does or doesn’t, he still very surely will lead the league in goals and will be a fantasy monster thanks to his goal-scoring and huge shot numbers (along with powerplay points and hits too if your league counts those).

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Whatever your opinion is of Taylor Hall (and please don’t @ me unless it’s extremely positive) there’s no doubt he can put up some numbers. Top five numbers for left wingers. He’s one of the few guys in the league who can threaten the 300 shot mark too.

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Filip Forsberg is a beautiful man who is can contribute in a number of categories and the best part is that very few people seem to be aware of that. On average in Yahoo drafts, 48 other players are taken before this perfect human being. Be better than those 48 idiots.

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Gabriel Landeskog is a pretty safe pick and there’s nothing wrong with that. He probably gets you 60 points this year and after that you can just call it a day. There is nothing sexy about picking Landeskog, but there’s no shame in it either. With Patrick Roy out of the picture, he might be even better than he’s looked so far.

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With the departures of David Backes and Troy Brower, plus an injury to Alex Steen, the door is wide-open for Jaden Schwartz to get big minutes and score big points in the process. If he plays on a line with Vladimir Tarasenko, look out.

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Another great player who gets pretty underrated for unknown reasons. The dude will score 30 and can definitely score more, and will put up 300-or-close-to-it shots in the process. Powerplay numbers have never been big though, but that may change if Shea Weber ricochets a few slappers off his shin-pads and in, something my model does not account for.

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Technically a centre, but Yahoo decided to give him left-wing eligibility anyways. I don’t watch enough Sabres games to know if he actually suits up there, but who cares that dual-eligibility is a god-send. Buffalo gives him huge minutes and that means that he gets some very good totals.

 

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