The Buffalo Sabres
are off to their best start since 2008-09, and Thomas Vanek
's strong start is a huge reason why.
After his second two-goal performance of the season in Buffalo's 3-0 win over the Florida Panthers
on Thursday night, Vanek has shown a knack for thriving in front of the net -- and his fantasy owners have rejoiced on a nightly basis as a result.
The 27-year-old sniper is far from unrecognized as a standout goal-scorer in his career, but the past two seasons have seen his fantasy stock take a slight hit.
After 40-plus goal seasons in 2006-07 and 2008-09, the Austrian-born left wing has averaged 30 goals over the past two seasons, with average PIM totals and plus-minus outings.
Vanek is now anchoring the Sabres offensively with 10 points through 6 games (6G, 4A) , only trailing surging Toronto Maple Leafs
' forward Phil Kessel
(12 pts) for the League lead. Vanek also sports a plus-5 rating and 8 PIMs so far this season.