As part of NHL.com's 31 in 31 series, the fantasy hockey staff identifies relevant players from each team for 2018-19. Today, we look at Philadelphia Flyers players, listed in order of rank in NHL.com's top 250. For more fantasy coverage, visit NHL.com/Fantasy.
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Claude Giroux, C/LW (NHL.com rank: 15) -- The 30-year-old had NHL career-highs in goals (34), assists (68) and points (102), and finished second in the NHL in points behind Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (108). He finished 10th overall in Yahoo, and his ceiling is just as high this season. Giroux, who primarily plays left wing, will keep his dual position eligibility (C/LW), which adds to his value. Though it may feel like a reach to pick him in the top 10, Giroux has the potential to finish there for a second straight season.
Video: Claude Giroux comes in at No. 7 on the list
Jakub Voracek, RW (47) -- The 29-year-old had an NHL career-high 85 points (20 goals, 65 assists) and finished 14th overall in Yahoo. Voracek's production was impressive considering he played away from Giroux for most of the season. Voracek led Philadelphia in shots on goal (228), and his 35 power-play points were second behind Giroux's 36. His consistency has been a concern in past seasons, but he likely will keep his first power-play role with Giroux, providing fantasy owners with insurance. Voracek should return value if selected around the top 50.
Video: Jakub Voracek takes the No. 16 spot on the list
Wayne Simmonds, RW - INJ. (72)* -- The 29-year-old had 46 points (24 goals, 22 assists) and a Flyers-worst minus-16 rating last season. The inconsistencies could have been explained by multiple injuries, but it was his second straight season with a poor plus/minus (minus-18 in 2016-17). He played on the third line at even strength and on the first power-play unit with Giroux and Voracek. With the addition of left wing James van Riemsdyk, Simmonds' spot on the top power play is not guaranteed. However, he has added value in hits leagues (1.8 per game in NHL career) and should be selected within the top 100. It's worth noting he potentially could become an unrestricted free agent after this season and may have added motivation in a contract year.
Shayne Gostisbehere, D (73) -- The 25-year-old had an NHL career-high 65 points (13 goals, 52 assists) in 78 games last season. He finished first among NHL defensemen with 33 PPP and fourth in power-play ice time (281:18). His usage should stay the same this season, making him a candidate to be among the first 10 defensemen selected in season-long drafts.
Video: Shayne Gostisbehere lands at No. 17 on the list
Sean Couturier, C - INJ. (76) -- The 25-year-old burst on the fantasy landscape with NHL career-highs in goals (31), assists (45), points (76), SOG (227) and PPP (14), leading to the 27th overall ranking in Yahoo. He carried that into the Stanley Cup Playoffs with nine points (five goals, four assists) in five games, impressive considering he played Games 5 and 6 of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Pittsburgh Penguins with a torn MCL. Though it would be a reach to project Couturier will match his numbers from last season, he likely could be in the 60-65 point range if he remains the No. 1 center on a line with Giroux. Couturier (lower body) does come with injury concern but could return serious value if he falls in drafts.
Ivan Provorov, D - INJ. (101)** -- The 21-year-old scored 17 goals last season, tied for the NHL lead among defensemen with Dougie Hamilton of the Calgary Flames and Victor Hedman of the Tampa Bay Lightning. It was Provorov's second straight season with 24 assists, and he should continue to produce offense this season. He led the Flyers with an average of 24:09 of ice time and will play on the first defense pair with Gostisbehere at even strength. Provorov is expected to play on the second power-play unit, but there is opportunity for him to improve on the five PPP he had last season with the addition of van Riemsdyk, who had 11 power-play goals in 2017-18.
James van Riemsdyk, LW (103) -- The 29-year-old led the Toronto Maple Leafs in goals (36) despite playing 14:54 per game (17th on Toronto; minimum 20 games). Part of the reason for his NHL career high in goals can be attributed to a shooting percentage of 14.5 percent. His shooting percentage should regress closer to his 11.5 percent career average, but van Riemsdyk has had at least 238 SOG in four of the past five seasons, providing insurance for category coverage. It's too early to speculate about what his role at even strength will be, but it's proven he can score 30-plus goals in any role and should be selected around the top 100.
Video: James van Riemsdyk speaks after signing with Flyers
Other players with fantasy upside in late rounds or off waiver wire: Travis Konecny, LW/RW** (157); Nolan Patrick, C (175); Brian Elliott or Michal Neuvirth, G*; Oskar Lindblom, LW; Carter Hart or Alex Lyon, G
*Potential 2019 unrestricted free agent
**Potential 2019 restricted free agent
INJ. - Injury concern entering 2018-19