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Fantasy forward bargains based on draft position

Wednesday, 09.30.2015 / 3:00 AM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Pete Jensen - Fantasy Insider

Perception impacts where players are drafted in fantasy, usually to the point where proven commodities remain on the board much later than they should.

Whether it's because of age, single-position eligibility, lineup instability or recent production, it's always worth referencing Yahoo average draft position to pinpoint how late you could land a proven player. If you compare ADP to rankings, you'll see discrepancies to capitalize on.

Forwards being drafted outside the top 75 on average and 15-30 spots lower than they are in my rankings offer serious value on draft day. Jumping on players going much later than they deserve sets your team up for success if they exceed expectations.

Special teams, home ice X-factors for Islanders

Wednesday, 09.30.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Brian Compton - Deputy Managing Editor

NEW YORK -- The New York Islanders may have taken some teams by surprise last season when they won 47 games and emerged among the elite in the Metropolitan Division.

They know they won't be surprising anybody this time around, which could make the road to the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs a tad bumpier.

"Everybody that's involved in management really believes in the group," defenseman Travis Hamonic said. "I think more importantly, the players believe in one another. I think we have the personnel to go out and get the job done. We feel that we came up short last year.

"We have a lot to prove. Nothing's going to be given to us. We know it's going to be much harder this season. Teams are going to be expecting us now, and we're not going to beat anybody by coming out blind. We're ready for the test and we're grateful we've got the same group in here because it's a fun group to win with."

Here are three X-factors that will impact the Islanders' postseason chances:

Islanders poised to face new challenges in new home

Wednesday, 09.30.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Brian Compton - Deputy Managing Editor continues its preview of the 2015-16 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams.

NEW YORK -- After 43 years at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Long Island, the New York Islanders have a new address.

The Islanders will open the 2015-16 season against the Chicago Blackhawks on Oct. 9 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The players are excited about the opportunity to play their home games in a state-of-the-art arena, but the days of driving 10-15 minutes from their homes to the Coliseum are in the rearview mirror.

So if they plan on qualifying for the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the third time in four seasons, the Islanders know they will have to get acclimated to their new surroundings quickly.

"It's going to be different," right wing Kyle Okposo said. "There's some new challenges, new adjustments that are going to have to be made by everybody. It's going to be a feeling-out process kind of getting used to the routine and that whole bit, because we'd been at Nassau and successful and it's easy for us to live out on the Island. We're just going to have to get used to everything, but we're excited about the new facilities and the new building."

Depth at center, defensemen X-factors for Capitals

Wednesday, 09.30.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Katie Brown - Correspondent

WASHINGTON -- In an effort to keep the Stanley Cup window wide open, the Washington Capitals spent last season introducing young players into their lineup. Now it's time for them to become bigger contributors.

Evgeny Kuznetsov starts his second full NHL season, and Andre Burakovsky should be in the NHL full-time after spending a portion of last season with Hershey in the American Hockey League. How those forwards perform will go a long way to competing in what is primed to be a tough Metropolitan Division.

Here are three X-factors that will impact whether the Capitals then can get over the hump in the postseason:

Capitals put pieces in place to extend playoff stay

Wednesday, 09.30.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

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

WASHINGTON -- After another disappointing exit from the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Washington Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan again turned his attention to building a championship team.

Washington blew a 3-1 series lead and was eliminated in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Second Round by the New York Rangers. MacLellan had to contend with re-signing a handful of restricted free agents (including No. 1 goaltender Braden Holtby) and manage the loss of several veteran players. He signed forward Justin Williams and acquired forward T.J. Oshie from the St. Louis Blues in a trade for Troy Brouwer.

The Capitals believe the additions of Oshie and Williams will give them the edge they've been missing during the postseason.

"I bring a little bit of comfort, as a guy who's been there and gone all the way," said Williams, who has won the Stanley Cup with the Carolina Hurricanes and twice with the Los Angeles Kings. "But listen, this is new for me. This is a new team, and I'm just trying to fit in and find my role as best as I can. I'm not a savior by any means of the word. I'm just coming here to be a piece with this team, which I think is a championship team."

Roundup: Eichel helps Sabres top Maple Leafs

Wednesday, 09.30.2015 / 1:26 AM / News

Evan Rodrigues scored twice, and Jack Eichel scored a shorthanded goal for the Buffalo Sabres in a 4-0 preseason win against the Toronto Maple Leafs at First Niagara Center on Tuesday.

Robin Lehner made 24 saves for the Sabres, who are 4-1-0 this preseason.

Eichel scored 13:48 into the first period. Matt Moulson gave Buffalo a 2-0 lead 59 seconds into the second.

Rodrigues scored at 2:41 of the second and at 10:51 of the third.

Toronto goalie Jonathan Bernier made 14 saves facing 17 shots playing half the game; James Reimer made 14 saves on 15 shots in relief.

The Maple Leafs are 3-3-0.

Malkin's line leads Penguins to Hockeyville win

Tuesday, 09.29.2015 / 11:55 PM / 2015 Kraft Hockeyville

Kristen Nelson - Staff Writer

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. -- There are roughly 4,000 seats in the Cambria County War Memorial Arena. But when Sergei Plotnikov scored 14 seconds into the Pittsburgh Penguins' preseason game against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday, the building sounded as loud as a packed NHL arena.

The line of center Evgeni Malkin between Plotnikov and Patric Hornqvist set the tempo for the Penguins, combining for two of Pittsburgh's goals in its 4-2 victory against Tampa Bay in the preseason game that was the centerpiece of being named Kraft Hockeyville USA.

"I like what I see," Penguins coach Mike Johnston said. "Certainly Hornqvist and [Malkin], we thought they had some chemistry before, but Sergei Plotnikov, I know people have talked about him. He's fit in better and better every night that I see him."

Penguins defeat Lightning in Hockeyville USA game

Tuesday, 09.29.2015 / 11:00 PM / 2015 Kraft Hockeyville

David Satriano - Staff Writer

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. -- The fans in Johnstown, Pa., waited more than five months for the preseason game Tuesday at Cambria County War Memorial Arena between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Tampa Bay Lightning since the city won the inaugural title of Kraft Hockeyville USA in May.

They didn't have to wait long to have something to cheer about with the hometown Penguins scoring on the first shift in their 4-2 win.

Sergei Plotnikov's backhand shot beat Lightning goalie Kristers Gudlevskis 14 seconds into the first period to give the Penguins a 1-0 lead. Evgeni Malkin and Patric Hornqvist, Plotnikov's linemates, assisted on the goal, which sent the crowd crammed in the small arena into a frenzy.

The crowd was mostly pro-Penguins; Johnstown is 90 miles from Pittsburgh and most of the residents are Penguins fans. Members from each team before the game said they expected it to feel like a playoff atmosphere, and it did all night in the sold-out arena with 4,000 screaming fans waving rally towels and cheering "Let's go Pens" most of the game.

Commissioner: No timetable for NHL expansion

Tuesday, 09.29.2015 / 7:12 PM / News

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

NEW YORK -- The NHL continues to explore the possibility of expansion but no firm timetable has been set for the process, Commissioner Gary Bettman said Tuesday at the fall Board of Governors meeting.

Earlier Tuesday, the Board's executive committee heard presentations from representatives from the Quebec and Las Vegas markets. The Quebec presentation was headed by members of Quebecor, the company making the Quebec bid. Businessman Bill Foley led the presentation by the Vegas Wants Hockey group.

The presentations, made at the NHL office here, each lasted more than an hour, according to Commissioner Bettman. They were the latest step by the League to determine if expansion is a viable option.

Commissioner Bettman said no deadline has been established for a decision.

"We are in the process of gathering information," Commissioner Bettman said. "There have been no deliberations as to whether or not we want to expand, how many teams, or where. There's much work to be done."

Penguins' Bennett, Lightning's Killorn visit school

Tuesday, 09.29.2015 / 5:25 PM / 2015 Kraft Hockeyville

Kristen Nelson - Staff Writer

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. -- Students at Westmont Hilltop Middle School couldn't really focus on what their teachers were going over in class on Tuesday. They couldn't keep their minds off the visitors scheduled for the end of the school day.

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Beau Bennett and Tampa Bay Lightning center Alex Killorn visited the school as part of the Kraft Hockeyville USA celebration prior to the preseason game between their teams at the Cambria County War Memorial Arena (7 p.m. ET, NBCSN).

The students piled into the gym, which was covered in signs made by students for the Penguins, and started chants well before anyone arrived.

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