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Spezza, McDonagh among bounce-back candidates

David Satriano - NHL.com Fantasy Staff Writer

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price was the Fantasy MVP last season and no doubt helped many who owned him to fantasy championships.

But it takes more than a great season from a goalie to win. You also need to be able to identify when to drop a player who is playing below his draft value. It's not easy dropping Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon, who had 38 points one season after winning the Calder Trophy, but holding on to a player and waiting for them to turn the corner during a rough year can be costly.

Here are 10 players you can expect to have bounce back fantasy seasons:

Upstart Oilers face challenge shoring up defense

Monday, 09.21.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Derek Van Diest - NHL.com Correspondent

EDMONTON -- After an eventful offseason highlighted by the selection of center Connor McDavid with the No. 1 pick at the 2015 NHL Draft, the Edmonton Oilers are a much different team than the one that was 28th in the NHL standings last season.

Not only did the Oilers win the NHL Draft Lottery on April 18, they also made sweeping changes to the front office and coaching staff before drafting McDavid on June 26.

Two days after their fourth lottery win in the past six years, Edmonton put former Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson in charge, naming him CEO of Oilers Entertainment Group.

Letestu, Draisaitl among X-factors for Oilers

Monday, 09.21.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Derek Van Diest - NHL.com Correspondent

EDMONTON -- Although most of the attention will be on Connor McDavid and the rest of the young core, the Edmonton Oilers' success could hinge on the supporting cast.

Here are three X-factors that will determine whether the Oilers can compete for a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs this season:

Finding No. 1 goalie an X-factor for Maple Leafs

Monday, 09.21.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Mike Brophy - NHL.com Correspondent

TORONTO -- It is the dawn of a new era in Toronto.

With the addition of coach Mike Babcock, along with general manager Lou Lamoriello and team president Brendan Shanahan, the feeling is the Maple Leafs are headed in the right direction.

However, it is going to take time for the Maple Leafs to meet their ultimate goal of being a Stanley Cup contender. It is important to note the management team has not put a timeline on reaching that goal.

Here are three X-factors that can help the Maple Leafs be the disciplined, hard-working team Babcock aspires to coach:

Babcock's focus getting Maple Leafs to follow system

Monday, 09.21.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Mike Brophy - NHL.com Correspondent

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2015-16 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams.

TORONTO -- Success for the Toronto Maple Leafs this season won't necessarily be measured in victories.

Rather, new coach Mike Babcock will be pleased if his players buy into his system, which basically requires dedication on and off the ice as well as simple hard work.

"All we're going to do is build a process here, and I will make it very clear to the guys that I will be happy," Babcock said as he began his first training camp as coach of the Maple Leafs. "I like being happy, period. The two things that irritate me the most are lack of preparation and lack of compete. That's not happening."

NHL linesman Cameron gives back at Hockeyville

Sunday, 09.20.2015 / 11:30 PM / Kraft Hockeyville

Kevin Woodley - NHL.com Correspondent

NORTH SAANICH, British Columbia -- Hockey fans on Vancouver Island aren't the only ones excited about having the Vancouver Canucks play the San Jose Sharks on Monday as the main event of Kraft Hockeyville.

Veteran NHL linesman Lonnie Cameron is excited to work in his hometown again.

"When I step out on the ice, the hairs on the back of my head will be going off," Cameron said. "I grew up 12 blocks from the rink. I've been looking forward to this date on the calendar."

Going into his 20th year in the NHL and with more than 1,100 games under his belt, it takes a lot for Cameron to get excited about an assignment. But the chance to work in front of family and friends in an arena overlooked by the one he grew up playing in was enough to do it.

"That's where I started pee wee pup hockey, seven-, eight- years old," said Cameron, who grew up playing with former NHL players such as Joe Reekie and Dan Woodley. "My picture is on the wall."

Flyers' Cowick, daughter visit Cup at Hockeyville

Sunday, 09.20.2015 / 7:05 PM / Kraft Hockeyville

Kevin Woodley - NHL.com Correspondent

NORTH SAANICH, British Columbia -- For Bruce Cowick, the chance to get up close and personal with the Stanley Cup at the Kraft Hockeyville celebrations on Sunday was nothing new.

Cowick had already hoisted the Cup as a member of the Philadelphia Flyers team that won it in 1974. But what Cowick never got to do was share the Stanley Cup with his daughter, Sherri, who wasn't born when he won it, so they drove 40 minutes to North Saanich to see it.

Seeing Sherri fighting back tears when she found his name on the Cup, the trip was worth it.

"I didn't expect to get that emotional," Sherri told NHL.com, still wiping tears from her cheeks. "Growing up, he was just my dad who played hockey and when you are a kid it doesn't mean as much; you maybe don't understand the magnitude until you are an adult. But becoming a parent yourself, it just resonates on a totally different level."

Skate shop owner Orr has had lasting impact

Sunday, 09.20.2015 / 12:41 PM / Kraft Hockeyville

Kevin Woodley - NHL.com Correspondent

VICTORIA, British Columbia -- The NHL is bringing the Stanley Cup to the Panorama Recreation Center on Sunday to help celebrate North Saanich winning Kraft Hockeyville in Canada 2015.

Without knowing it, the NHL has already been to Larry Orr's garage around the corner, a place where the spirit of hockey and community thrives every day in a never-locked garage at the top of a driveway that starts with a skate perched on small sign that reads, "skate sharpening."

Coyotes aim to respond after last season's struggles

Sunday, 09.20.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Jerry Brown - NHL.com Correspondent

NHL.com's preview of the 2015-16 season will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams.

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Arizona Coyotes followed up their most disappointing season in the desert with even more bad luck, stuck on the outside looking in while the Edmonton Oilers and Buffalo Sabres scooped up the two "can't miss" prospects at the 2015 NHL Draft.

But general manager Don Maloney rebounded from missing out on Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel with a very active few weeks of trades and free agent acquisitions. They are also very pleased with the No. 3 pick, forward Dylan Strome, although another year in juniors is the likely scenario.

Doan, Domi among X-factors for Coyotes

Sunday, 09.20.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

David Satriano - NHL.com Staff Writer

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Arizona Coyotes finished last in the Western Conference last season and have not made the Stanley Cup Playoffs since reaching the Western Conference Final in 2012. They spent the offseason trying to remedy those issues.

"Our whole organization put in a lot of work this summer," coach Dave Tippett told the Coyotes website on Thursday. "There was a lot of things that we had to address. … You just don't go through a season like we did last year without trying to fix a lot of things and that was the case this summer."

Some of that work included signing former Coyotes players (defenseman Zbynek Michalek and forwards Antoine Vermette and Boyd Gordon), who are expected to have an impact this season. But the play of captain Shane Doan and goalie Mike Smith are among the factors that will influence whether the Coyotes reach the playoffs or take part in the NHL Draft Lottery again next spring.

Here are three X-factors that will determine the success of the Coyotes this season:

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