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Oilers' Hall back atop fantasy left wing rankings

NHL.com's Matt Sitkoff ranks top 40 players at LW position

Thursday, 09.04.2014 / 11:00 AM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

By Matt Sitkoff - NHL.com Contributor

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Oilers' Hall back atop fantasy left wing rankings
NHL.com fantasy insider Matt Sitkoff ranks the top 40 left wings in fantasy hockey for the 2014-15 season.

With the 2014-15 NHL season inching closer by the day, NHL.com has you covered with positional fantasy rankings. Based on Yahoo eligibility, projected lineups, past performance, injury history and each insider's opinion, Matt Cubeta (centers), Matt Sitkoff (left wings), Pete Jensen (right wings), Brian Metzer (defensemen) and Justin Goldman (goalies) bring you up to speed by identifying all the players worth targeting at each position in your upcoming drafts.


Taylor Hall of the Edmonton Oilers tops the preseason left wing rankings for the second consecutive season. The No. 1 pick in the 2010 NHL Draft had a career high 80 points last season and finished in the top 10 in scoring for the second straight season. Hall's 1.08 points per game has paced all left wings the past two seasons and his 0.91 career points per game ranks him fourth among players at the position.

The top 10 is a mix of consistent performers and players coming off career years. Jamie Benn of the Dallas Stars was named to the NHL's First All-Star team. Expect his chemistry with center Tyler Seguin to continue. Max Pacioretty of the Montreal Canadiens has the most goals from the left side in the past three seasons (87) and hitting the 40-goal mark is not out of the question.

Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Jonathan Drouin, 19, is the only player among the top five picks in the 2013 NHL Draft to not to see action last season in the League, but the extra development time will pay huge dividends for the talented left wing and leading candidate for the Calder Trophy. Youth is represented throughout the top 40 with Calder Trophy winners Gabriel Landeskog (21) and Jonathan Huberdeau (21), as well as precocious talents like Tomas Hertl (20) and Alex Galchenyuk (20).

Some good bounce-back candidates within the rankings include Joffrey Lupul, Alex Tanguay, Huberdeau and Jiri Tlusty. Each had injury issues last season, but owners can expect them to be back producing at their normal paces in a full, 82-game season.

MOCK DRAFT: Results, analysis of NHL.com's 12-team, 16-round simulation

RANKINGS: Top 50 breakdown | Center | Left Wing | Right Wing | D-men | Goalies

SLEEPERS: Cubeta | Jensen | Sitkoff

NOTE: NHL.com's fantasy staff has determined that the primary position of the players listed below is left wing. Each of these players is LW-eligible in Yahoo leagues. These are Matt Sitkoff's left wing rankings and may not reflect the order of NHL.com's aggregate top 275 overall fantasy rankings.

Rank Team Player
1. Taylor HaLl*
2. Jamie Benn
3. Chris Kunitz
4. Patrick ShaRP*
5. Henrik ZetterbeRG*
6. Zach Parise
7. Max Pacioretty
8. Daniel Sedin
9. Thomas VanEK*
10. Gabriel Landeskog
11. Jonathan Drouin
12. Patrick Marleau*
13. Ryan O'Reilly*
14. Alexander Steen*
15. James van Riemsdyk
16. Milan Lucic
17. Jeff Skinner*
18. Brad Marchand
19. Jaden Schwartz
20. Mikkel Boedker
21. Matt Moulson
22. Tomas Hertl
23. Chris Kreider
24. Mats Zuccarello
25.  David Perron*
26. Brandon Saad*
27. Evander Kane
28. Ondrej Palat
29. Joffrey Lupul*
30. Alex TanguAY*
31. Mike CammalleRI*
32. Andrew Ladd
33. Alex GalchenyUK*
34. Clarke MacArthur
35. Scott Hartnell
36. Jonathan HuberdeAU*
37. Antoine Roussel
38. Patrik EliAS*
39. Jiri Tlusty
40. Matt Nieto
Just Missed: Tomas Tatar (Red Wings), Johnny Gaudreau (Flames), Colin Wilson (Predators), Jussi Jokinen (Panthers), Tanner Pearson (Kings), Alex Killorn (Lightning), R.J. Umberger (Flyers), Nick Foligno (Blue Jackets), Jamie McGinn (Avalanche), Dustin Brown (Kings)

* Player has dual-position eligibility in Yahoo leagues

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NHL.COM FANTASY HOCKEY COVERAGE
Analysis of NHL.com's fantasy mock draft
Video: NHL stars make picks | Draft prep
Top 275 rankings | Top 50 breakdown
Positional rankings: C | LW | RW | D | G
Talented crop of rookies has high upside
Multicategory assets | Top specialists
Bounce-back candidates | Injury rebounds

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