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Malkin atop updated fantasy forward rankings

Wednesday, 12.21.2011 / 2:20 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

By Matt Cubeta - NHL.com Staff Writer

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Malkin atop updated fantasy forward rankings
A Russian still ranks No. 1 in NHL.com's overall rundown of forwards, but it's no longer Alex Ovechkin, it's his countryman who has been leading the Penguins in Sidney Crosby's absence.
The time has come to give fantasy hockey fans a joined look at all the forwards -- not just our usual Center-Left Wing-Right Wing break downs, but a look at the League's elite forwards. With the holiday's approaching and the midway point of the NHL season just a couple of weeks away, we thought this week would be a good time to provide you with updated rankings of all the top fantasy hockey forwards.

After entering preseason as the top overall fantasy player, where does Alex Ovechkin now rank among the forwards after 32 games of NHL play? How about the emergence of Joffrey Lupul, where does he fit in with the world's best offensive players? What about injured players like Sidney Crosby and Claude Giroux, where do they stand? You'll have to read on to find out...

While our weekly rankings help you gauge the value of each player at their respective positions, these rankings will help you assess the value of every forward. Is Zach Parise going to outperform Anze Kopitar going forward? Will Kris Versteeg continue to be more valuable than Joe Thornton? These rankings allow you to see if a wing is going to be more productive than a center, and vice versa. They are based on expectations of the season from this point on -- this means that just because Phil Kessel leads the NHL in points right now, we don't necessarily think he'll be the most valuable fantasy player for the rest of the way.

The rankings also include players that are currently hurt and on IR, so you can gauge how we feel about them in comparison to everyone else. For example, Sidney Crosby still resides just outside the top-30 players, despite us not knowing when he'll be back. Like in preseason, we still think he can be very valuable once he returns, even if he misses significant time.

Our regular positional rankings will return starting the week of Jan. 2nd with NHL.com's goalie updates in our weekly column, "In the Cage." You can also expect to see a midseason awards collaboration by our entire fantasy hockey staff next week, as well as Matt Cubeta's updated top-175 overall fantasy hockey rankings in early January.

Rank
Team
Player
1. Evgeni Malkin, C, RW
2. Daniel Sedin, LW
3. Steven Stamkos, C
4. Claude Giroux, C, RW
5. Henrik Sedin, C
6. Corey Perry, RW
7. Jonathan Toews, C
8. Pavel Datsyuk, C, LW
9. Alex Ovechkin, LW
10. Nicklas Backstrom, C
11. Patrick Kane, C, RW
12. Phil Kessel, RW
13. Patrick Sharp, C, LW, RW
14. Anze Kopitar, C
15. Zach Parise, LW
16. James Neal, LW, RW
17. Ryan Kesler, C
18. Marian Hossa, RW
19. Thomas Vanek, LW
20. Marian Gaborik, RW
21. Jarome Iginla, RW
22. Ilya Kovalchuk, LW, RW
23. Henrik Zetterberg, C, LW
24. Ryan Getzlaf, C
25. Martin St. Louis, RW
26. Teemu Selanne, RW
27. Joffrey Lupul, LW, RW
28. Johan Franzen, LW, RW
29. Brad Richards, C
30. Jason Spezza, C
Rank
Team
Player
31. Sidney Crosby, C
32. Kris Versteeg, LW, RW
33. Scott Hartnell, LW
34. Patrick Marleau, C, LW
35. Stephen Weiss, C
36. Rick Nash, LW, RW
37. Eric Staal, C
38. Tomas Fleischmann, LW
39. Tyler Seguin, C, RW
40. Jamie Benn, C, LW
41. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, C
42. Milan Lucic, LW
43. Joe Pavelski, C, RW
44. Jaromir Jagr, RW
45. Dany Heatley, LW, RW
46. Bobby Ryan, LW
47. Brad Marchand, C, LW
48. Mike Richards, C
49. David Backes, C, RW
50. Evander Kane, LW
51. Jason Pominville, RW
52. Danny Briere, C, RW
53. Jeff Carter, C, RW
54. Joe Thornton, C
55. Mikko Koivu, C
56. John Tavares, C
57. Alexandre Burrows, LW, RW
58. Ryane Clowe, LW, RW
59. Logan Couture, C
60. Matt Duchene, C


NHL.COM FANTASY HOCKEY COVERAGE
50 players with added hits-league value
Cubeta's team-by-team bold predictions
Breakout player lists: Jensen | Cubeta
Mock draft analysis | Video: Draft prep
Top 275 | Breakdown | C | LW | RW | D | G
Point pairs | Bounce-backs | Inj. rebounds
Sleeper lists: Cubeta | Jensen | Sitkoff
Video: NHL players make picks | Sleepers

NHL.COM FANTASY PLAYER RANKINGS

RANK TEAM PLAYER
1. Sidney crosby
2. Steven Stamkos
3. Corey Perry
4. Evgeni Malkin
5. Ryan Getzlaf

COMPLETE RANKINGS | MOCK DRAFT ANALYSIS