Skip to main content
fantasy

Fantasy forward bargains for 2016-17

Matt Duchene, Vincent Trocheck can provide serious value based on average draft position

by Pete Jensen @NHLJensen / NHL.com Fantasy Insider

Fantasy rankings often differ from average draft positions by a wide margin. Capitalizing on such discrepancies can help you win your league.

NHL.com identified San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton (Yahoo ADP: 142.2; finish: 10th) and Philadelphia Flyers right wing Wayne Simmonds (ADP: 90.7; finish: 11th) as draft bargains entering last season. They were far from the first and certainly won't be the last proven commodities floating around longer than they should in drafts.

FANTASY RANKINGS: TOP 250 | CENTER | LW | RW | D-MAN | GOALIE

DRAFT BARGAINS: FORWARD | D-MAN | GOALIE | BUYER BEWARE

Here are 10 forwards ranked outside NHL.com's top 50 who have become draft bargains based on Yahoo ADP. These players should be around at least a round or two after their NHL.com rank and provide added value the later they fall.

NOTE: Players included on NHL.com's breakout, sleeper, deep sleeper, bounce-back and injury bounce-back lists also are expected to provide value based on ADP but have not been included again on this list.

Ryan Johansen, C, Nashville Predators (NHL.com: 55; ADP: 77.5)

Johansen should be considered a borderline top 50 asset with so much talent around him in Nashville but instead is being drafted on average outside the top 75. He scored 34 points with a plus-10 rating, 11 power-play points and 97 shots on goal in 42 games after being traded from the Columbus Blue Jackets to the Predators. He should be on the first power-play unit with forwards James Neal and Filip Forsberg, as well as defensemen P.K. Subban and Roman Josi. Johansen has three straight seasons of at least 60 points and 20 PPP.

Video: SJS@NSH, Gm6: Johansen beats Jones after great move

Jason Spezza, C, Dallas Stars (NHL.com: 56; ADP: 82.3)

Spezza, 33, may be a veteran, but he also is one of the most consistent scorers in the League with at least 62 points, 22 PPP and 200 SOG in each of the past three seasons. The Stars were the highest-scoring team in the NHL last season, and Spezza was one of their three 30-goal scorers; the others are top 10 fantasy forwards Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin. If Spezza, who should have Patrick Sharp and/or Jiri Hudler on his line, falls past the seventh round of a 12-team draft, he would almost certainly be the best player available.

Ryan O'Reilly, C/LW, Buffalo Sabres (NHL.com: 58; ADP: 91.0)

A look at O'Reilly's production last season and potential linemates should be convincing enough; he led the Sabres in points (60) and PPP (22) despite missing 11 games, and will play with either Kyle Okposo or Sam Reinhart and Tyler Ennis or Evander Kane at even strength. He is the third-highest dual-eligible player in NHL.com's rankings and is on the first power-play unit with Buffalo's top forwards and defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen. If you can land O'Reilly in the sixth or seventh round of a 12-team draft to fill your second left-wing slot, you'll be in great shape.

Tyler Toffoli, C/RW, Los Angeles Kings (NHL.com: 69; ADP: 86.2)

There are questions surrounding the Kings' top six forwards after the departure of Milan Lucic, but Toffoli is guaranteed to flank either Anze Kopitar or Jeff Carter at even strength. He scored an NHL career-high 31 goals last season and led the League with a plus-35 rating; he's plus-84 through 230 career NHL games. With greater power-play usage (2:05 per game last season, 11 PPP), he could score at least 65 points and would be well worth a pick in the seventh or eighth round.

Matt Duchene, C, Colorado Avalanche (NHL.com: 72; ADP: 99.9)

A new system under coach Jared Bednar means a fresh start for Duchene, who led the Avalanche in scoring (59 points in 76 games) last season. Duchene, a safe bet for 55-60 points and 200 or more SOG in anything close to a full season, still has a higher gear; he scored 70 points in 71 games in 2013-14. If you take a center early in your draft and address other positions, there's a great chance you can land Duchene in the 90-100 range as a potential steal.

Video: STL@COL: Duchene redirects puck, notches 30th goal

Milan Lucic, LW, Edmonton Oilers (NHL.com: 79; ADP: 95.0)

If you draft Connor McDavid in the first round, it would be wise to secure Lucic in the sixth or seventh of a 12-team draft. If you're just seeking that rare penalty minutes and hits coverage with 60-point potential, you'll be happy to learn Lucic is slipping to the eighth round in many formats. Forward Patrick Maroon had 14 points in 16 games last season alongside mostly McDavid during his time with the Oilers. If McDavid tops 80 points, Lucic could enter the top 30 overall.

Patric Hornqvist, RW, Pittsburgh Penguins (NHL.com: 95; ADP: 114.0)

Hornqvist is slipping outside the top 100 in many 12-team mock drafts despite scoring nine goals, two on the power play, in the Stanley Cup Playoffs alongside mostly Sidney Crosby at even strength and on the first power-play unit. Even though there has been plenty of line-juggling in Hornqvist's first two regular seasons with the Penguins, he's been rock solid with 51 points, a plus-12 rating or better, 15 PPP and at least 220 SOG in each. Don't be surprised to see him hit 60 points for the first time of his career.

Mike Hoffman, LW, Ottawa Senators (NHL.com: 105; ADP: 140.2)

Hoffman is easily attainable after the 10th round of a 12-team draft. He plays on the opposite wing of steady fantasy producer Mark Stone and will be centered by either newcomer Derick Brassard or injury bounce-back hopeful Kyle Turris. Hoffman ranked 12th in the NHL in 5-on-5 points per 60 minutes last season (minimum 1,000 minutes), according to Puckalytics.com. He improved in five of the six standard categories compared to his rookie season and nearly had 30 goals (29), 30 assists (30) and 250 SOG (242), something only six players did last season.

Vincent Trocheck, C, Florida Panthers (NHL.com: 112; ADP: 160.0)

Even though he has center-only eligibility in Yahoo, there's no reason Trocheck should be dropping like this in drafts. He missed six games because of a late-season injury but was one of eight players with at least 25 goals, 25 assists, a plus-15 rating and 13 PPP. He centered Florida's second line of Jussi Jokinen and Reilly Smith, but all three players are being overlooked in drafts. Trocheck, 23, has been added as a replacement for Team North America in the World Cup of Hockey 2016, and a running start could help him match or even exceed his lofty totals from last season.

Henrik Sedin, C, Vancouver Canucks (NHL.com: 122; ADP: 151.1)

The Canucks have one of the weakest rosters in the League on paper, but their Swedish top line of Henrik, Daniel Sedin and Loui Eriksson should be dangerous. An ADP outside the top 150 is a new low for Henrik, but it's only setting up a potential Thornton-esque fantasy resurgence. He turns 36 on Sept. 26 but covered two categories, assists (44) and PPP (20), at an elite level last season. A return to 65-70 points should not stun anyone, so don't flinch at the opportunity to snag Henrik after the 13th round, especially if you get Daniel in the seventh. They were the NHL's fourth-best point pair last season.

View More