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Fantasy top 100 forward rankings for 2017-18

NHL.com lists most valuable standard-league assets for rest of season

by Pete Jensen @NHLJensen / NHL.com Senior Fantasy Editor

Each week during the regular season, NHL.com has you covered with an overview of the fantasy forward landscape. With production trends, injury news and top 100 rankings based on performance and upside in standard Yahoo leagues, fantasy owners should use this information as a basis for roster decision-making.

 

MORE FANTASY RANKINGS: Top 50 defensemen | Top 25 goalies

 

TRENDING UP

Rickard Rakell, C/LW, ANA: Long-term injuries to centers Ryan Getzlaf (face) and Ryan Kesler (hip) have shaken up the Anaheim Ducks' forward group; their top line is now Rakell at left wing with center Derek Grant and right wing Corey Perry. Rakell had a rough patch with back-to-back minus-3 games to begin November but has responded with at least a point in three of his next four games, totaling six points (one goal, five assists), including a game when he had three power-play assists against the Vancouver Canucks on Nov. 9. Despite a dip in shooting percentage (12.8) compared to last season (18.6), Rakell ranks among the top 100 overall fantasy players in Yahoo (84th) with much-improved category coverage (six goals, eight assists, five power-play points, 47 shots on goal in 17 games).

Mitchell Marner, C/RW, TOR: The depth-line assignments appear to be history for Marner, who is back with left wing James van Riemsdyk and center Tyler Bozak, and rewarding his patient fantasy owners. Marner has seven points (one goal, six assists), a plus-6 rating, one PPP and 11 SOG over his past five games, and is averaging 15:58 per game in the span (14:55 over first 14 games). The Maple Leafs are on a four-game winning streak and have gone 3-0-0 without injured top-line center Auston Matthews (upper body) largely because Marner finally has turned around his season.

Pavel Buchnevich, LW/RW, NYR (53 percent owned): The New York Rangers' scoring depth likely will continue to be an issue moving forward, but their top line of Mika Zibanejad (eight), Chris Kreider (five) and Buchnevich (eight) is responsible for 35 percent of their goals this season (21 of 60). The offseason addition of defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk has led to the Rangers having two of the top seven power-play point pairs in the NHL; the Buchnevich-Zibanejad and Zibanejad-Shattenkirk pairs each has a point on six team power-play goals (tied for fifth in NHL). The Rangers rank third in the League on the power play (25.8 percent) and have won six straight games.

Video: TOR@BOS: Marner picks the top corner with a wrister

 

TRENDING DOWN

Jack Eichel, C, BUF: The Buffalo Sabres center has no goals on 28 SOG with three assists and a minus-4 rating over his past eight games after a hot start alongside Evander Kane and Jason Pominville. Forward Sam Reinhart (C/LW/RW, 24 percent owned in Yahoo) skated with Eichel and Kane at practice Monday; Reinhart was Eichel's most-frequent linemate during the center's second-half surge last season. Reinhart, who has played mostly on the third line and has five points (two goals, three assists; two PPP) in 17 games, has a chance to help Eichel break out of his scoring drought. But an upper-body injury to Rasmus Ristolainen, Buffalo's top defenseman, has been another blow to an underachieving power play (14.0 percent, third-worst in NHL).

Wayne Simmonds, RW, PHI: The Philadelphia Flyers wing started the season with nine points (six goals, three assists), four PPP and 22 SOG over his first eight games, but he has no goals, two assists, no PPP and 14 SOG in nine games since. His even-strength linemates over this drought have been Valtteri Filppula and either Travis Konecny or Jordan Weal, and that certainly hasn't helped his fantasy value. With the Flyers' top line of Claude Giroux, Sean Couturier and Jakub Voracek being one of the most-productive in the NHL, those who have Simmonds in fantasy can only hope the eventual return of injured rookie center Nolan Patrick (upper body) sparks the right wing's production. Simmonds still has a spot on the first power-play unit, but Philadelphia is 3-for-26 with the man-advantage since Oct. 24.

Mikael Granlund, C/RW, MIN (75 percent owned): The Minnesota Wild's top line of Eric Staal, Nino Niederreiter and Jason Zucker (LW/RW, 56 percent owned) has been extremely productive since Niederreiter returned from an ankle injury Oct. 31. But things haven't gone nearly as well for Granlund since returning from his groin injury Oct. 24; he has five points (one goal, four assists) in 10 games and hasn't had much success alongside Mikko Koivu and Tyler Ennis of late. He's still playing on the first power-play unit with Niederreiter, Koivu and defensemen Ryan Suter and Jared Spurgeon, but he has one PPP in 11 games this season. Fantasy owners should remain patient considering Granlund had 69 points (26 goals, 43 assists) and 20 PPP in 81 games playing mostly alongside Koivu last season.

Video: BUF@BOS: Eichel taps home rebound past Khudobin

 

YAHOO POSITION ELIGIBILITY UPDATES

Bobby Ryan, OTT: Added LW; now LW/RW

J.T. Miller, NYR: Added C; now C/LW/RW

Alexander Steen, STL: Added RW; now C/LW/RW

Leo Komarov, TOR: Added RW; now C/LW/RW

Alex Iafallo, LAK: Added LW; now C/LW

Artturi Lehkonen, MTL; Added RW; now LW/RW

 

 

TOP 100 FORWARD RANKINGS

Standard Yahoo categories include goals, assists, plus/minus, PIMs, PPP and SOG for skaters. ... Value has been quantified based on factors including but not limited to past production, line combinations, power-play usage, injury history, age, sleeper, bounce-back or breakout potential, anticipated regression, contract status, Yahoo ADP and overall upside for the rest of the season. ... Any players with day-to-day injury concerns (DTD) are noted. NEW - INJ. indicates a player who has returned from injury and rejoined the rankings.

1. Connor McDavid, C, EDM (SAME)
2. Nikita Kucherov, RW, TBL (+1)
3. Steven Stamkos, C, TBL (+1)
4. Auston Matthews, C, TOR (DTD)
5. Alex Ovechkin, LW, WSH (+1)
6. Vladimir Tarasenko, RW, STL (+3)
7. Jamie Benn, C/LW, DAL (SAME)
8. Tyler Seguin, C/RW, DAL (SAME)
9. Mark Scheifele, C, WPG (+1)
10. Sidney Crosby, C, PIT (-5)
11. Patrick Kane, RW, CHI (+1)
12. Phil Kessel, RW, PIT (+1)
13. Evgeni Malkin, C, PIT (+1)
14. Patrik Laine, RW, WPG (+1)
15. Blake Wheeler, RW, WPG (+2)
16. John Tavares, C, NYI (-5)
17. Brad Marchand, LW, BOS (DTD)
18. William Nylander, C/RW, TOR (DTD)
19. Anze Kopitar, C, LAK (+1)
20. Johnny Gaudreau, LW, CGY (+1)
21. Filip Forsberg, LW, NSH (+1)
22. Claude Giroux, C/LW, PHI (+3)
23. Leon Draisaitl, C/RW, EDM (-4)
24. Evgeny Kuznetsov, C, WSH (+2)
25. David Pastrnak, RW, BOS (+3)
26. Mike Hoffman, LW/RW, OTT (+3)
27. Jaden Schwartz, LW, STL (+3)
28. Sean Monahan, C, CGY (+4)
29. Brayden Schenn, C/LW, STL (+8)
30. Jakub Voracek, RW, PHI (+3)
31. Nicklas Backstrom, C, WSH (-8)
32. Jack Eichel, C, BUF (-8)
33. Alexander Radulov, RW, DAL (+1)
34. Taylor Hall, LW, NJD (+1)
35. Patrice Bergeron, C, BOS (+1)
36. Mark Stone, RW, OTT (+4)
37. Joe Pavelski, C/RW, SJS (-6)
38. Wayne Simmonds, RW, PHI (-11)
39. Evander Kane, LW, BUF (SAME)
40. Max Pacioretty, LW, MTL (+3)
41. Vladislav Namestnikov, C/LW, TBL (+8)
42. Aleksander Barkov, C, FLA (SAME)
43. Jonathan Huberdeau, LW, FLA (DTD)
44. Tyler Toffoli, C/RW, LAK (SAME)
45. Artemi Panarin, C/LW, CBJ (-7)
46. Anders Lee, LW, NYI (SAME)
47. Mika Zibanejad, C, NYR (+4)
48. Brayden Point, C/RW, TBL (-3)
49. Logan Couture, C/LW, SJS (+6)
50. Sean Couturier, C, PHI (+7)
51. Clayton Keller, C/LW/RW, ARI (-4)
52. James Neal, LW/RW, VGK (-2)
53. Anthony Mantha, LW/RW, DET (+1)
54. Nazem Kadri, C, TOR (+2)
55. Nikolaj Ehlers, LW, WPG (-7)
56. Nathan MacKinnon, C, COL (+5)
57. Ryan Johansen, C, NSH (+2)
58. Kyle Turris, C, NSH (+4)
59. Rickard Rakell, C/LW, ANA (+8)
60. Mitchell Marner, C/RW, TOR (+9)
61. James van Riemsdyk, LW, TOR (+9)
62. Matt Duchene, C/RW, OTT (+1)
63. Jonathan Toews, C, CHI (-10)
64. Jeff Skinner, LW, CAR (-11)
65. Jonathan Drouin, C/LW/RW, MTL (-1)
66. Dustin Brown, LW/RW, LAK (+8)
67. Viktor Arvidsson, LW/RW, NSH (+5)
68. Brandon Saad, LW, CHI (-10)
69. Jake Guentzel, C/LW, PIT (-1)
70. Brock Boeser, RW, VAN (-5)
71. Dylan Larkin, C/RW, DET (+4)
72. Cam Atkinson, RW, CBJ (NEW - INJ.)
73. Mikael Granlund, C/RW, MIN (-13)
74. Derick Brassard, C, OTT (+4)
75. Evgenii Dadonov, RW, FLA (-2)
76. Corey Perry, RW, ANA (+5)
77. Vincent Trocheck, C, FLA (+5)
78. T.J. Oshie, RW, WSH (-7)
79. Nino Niederreiter, LW/RW, MIN (SAME)
80. Patrick Maroon, LW, EDM (SAME)
81. Patrick Marleau, C/LW, TOR (+4)
82. Pavel Buchnevich, LW/RW, NYR (+14)
83. Josh Bailey, LW/RW, NYI (-17)
84. Mikko Rantanen, LW/RW, COL (-7)
85. Eric Staal, C, MIN (+2)
86. Matthew Tkachuk, LW, CGY (+2)
87. Mathew Barzal, C, NYI (-1)
88. Sebastian Aho, LW/RW, CAR (-12)
89. Jordan Eberle, C/RW, NYI (+4)
90. Brendan Gallagher, RW, MTL (-1)
91. Gabriel Landeskog, LW, COL (-1)
92. Ryan O'Reilly, C, BUF (-9)
93. Kyle Connor, LW, WPG (+6)
94. Jason Zucker, LW/RW, MIN (NEW)
95. Patric Hornqvist, RW, PIT (SAME)
96. Bobby Ryan, LW/RW, OTT (NEW - INJ.)
97. Kyle Palmieri, RW, NJD (NEW - INJ.)
98. Jonathan Marchessault, C/LW, VGK (-1)
99. Ondrej Palat, LW, TBL (-1)
100. Bo Horvat, C, VAN (NEW)

 

Dropped out: Nick Foligno, C/LW/RW, CBJ; Max Domi, LW, ARI; Alex Galchenyuk, C/LW, MTL; Henrik Zetterberg, C/LW, DET; Josh Anderson, RW, CBJ

Just missed: Nico Hischier, C, NJD; Teuvo Teravainen, C/LW/RW, CAR; Chris Kreider, LW, NYR; Jakob Silfverberg, RW, ANA; Sven Baertschi, LW, VAN; Paul Stastny, C, STL; Alexander Kerfoot, C/RW, COL; Jesper Bratt, LW/RW, NJD; J.T. Miller, C/LW/RW, NYR; Yanni Gourde, C/RW, TBL; Alex DeBrincat, RW, CHI; David Perron, LW/RW, VGK; Tomas Hertl, C/LW, SJS; Alex Killorn, LW, TBL; Micheal Ferland, LW/RW, CGY

Key injuries: Ryan Getzlaf, C, ANA; Jeff Carter, C, LAK; David Krejci, C, BOS; Andre Burakovsky, LW/RW, WSH; Marcus Johansson, LW, NJD; Zach Parise, LW, MIN; Patrick Eaves, RW, ANA; Charlie Coyle, C/RW, MIN; Ryan Kesler, C, ANA

 

READ: Last week's Top 100 forward rankings

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