In this week’s Last Word On Fantasy Hockey Report, we look at the NHL’s bright young stars who lead the way. Chances are most of these players will have low ownership in your league. They are either unproven or unknown by most casual fans. If you are in a medium to deep one-year league a few of them could help you in the short-term. If you are in a keeper league and they are still available, stuffing them on your bench could have big payoffs down the road.
Bright Young Stars
With seven points in only four games, Dallas Stars Radek Faksa highlights our focus this week. Faksa started his mini hot streak with a hat-trick in a 3-0 win over the Vegas Golden Knights. He followed that up with another two goals and two assists over his next three games. Faksa put up 12 goals and 21 assists for 33 points in his first full NHL season last year. This year he’s already scored 10 goals and has 16 points in only 26 games. With only 10% ownership in Yahoo! leagues Faksa is likely available.
Another bright young star who recently scored three goals in one game is rookie Alex DeBrincat. The diminutive winger has been playing on the top power-play unit for the Chicago Blackhawks. DeBrincat now has 19 points in his first 27 NHL games played, with six coming in his last five outings. He’s owned in about a third of Yahoo! fantasy hockey leagues.
Rookie Pierre-Luc Dubois has caught fire with six points in his last four games for the Columbus Blue Jackets. Dubois is currently centring an exciting line with Artemi Panarin and Josh Anderson and getting second unit power-play time. The former third overall pick has only 27 NHL games to his credit. Dubois is still a hidden fantasy hockey gem with only 5% Yahoo! ownership. This is a player that can help you in any, but the most shallow of leagues. If you are in a keeper league snatch him up now before your opponents catch on.
Carey Price is Back
In case you hadn’t heard, Carey Price is back, and that means so are the Montreal Canadiens. A couple of his teammates that may have fallen out of favour in your league are Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher. Since returning, Price and the Canadiens have gone 5-0 while scoring 24 goals and allowing just six. Galchenyuk has eight points over that run. Surprisingly, he’s only 38% owned in Yahoo! leagues. Gallagher meanwhile, put up five in five. He’s 58% owned, so he might still be hanging around on your wire.
Others to Consider
Sam Bennett had a solid rookie campaign two years ago when showed he belonged in the NHL with 36 points in 77 games played for the Calgary Flames. However, he did not avoid the dreaded sophomore slump last season where he regressed to 26 points in 81 games. This year his troubles continued with only three points in his first 23 games. In his last three games played Bennett has shown signs of life with five points. This is a player that may not be worth picking up in a one year league unless he continues this run. In keeper leagues though, he’s a great buy-low option. My money is on a big breakout for Sam Bennett in year four as he finds his way in the NHL.
We mentioned Josh Anderson earlier. At 6’3″ and 220 pounds, this 23-year-old made his mark last year in his first full season in the NHL with 29 points. He also had 89 penalty minutes and 147 hits. If your league counts such stats this budding power forward is a must add. So far this year Anderson has 17 points in 25 games and has already thrown 44 hits.