The Nashville Predators
assigned defenseman Ryan Ellis
to the American Hockey League's Milwaukee Admirals on Monday. This comes as a bit of a surprise as the former first round pick of the 2009 Draft figured to be in the mix for a spot on the Preds' blueline this season.
Though the Predators demoted Ryan Ellis
to the AHL on Monday the talented defenseman could be back in the NHL making an impact sooner than later. (Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The news of his demotion is surely a blow to fantasy owners who drafted Ellis or were targeting him in their upcoming drafts. At just 20 years-old and with plenty of offensive potential -- he posted 24 goals and 101 points in just 58 games in the OHL last season -- Ellis was targeted as prime sleeper candidate at the defenseman position heading into this year's campaign.
Of course Ellis' demotion to the AHL changes that a bit. At this point you might want to consider passing on Ellis in your upcoming fantasy draft. If you already drafted him in a deeper league, Ellis may be worth stashing away to see if his stay in Milwaukee may be only a brief one. Otherwise you probably want to consider sending Ellis back to the waiver wire.
Though he may not be relevant fantasy-wise right, now don't let Ellis slip off your radar. Despite his small frame, Ellis is a big talent and when he is promoted back to Nashville he could be a solid option at a thin position. With his scoring capabilities it may be tough for an offensively challenged team like the Predators to keep Ellis in the minors for very long. Expect his return to come quickly and, when it does, Ellis could eventually see some time on the power play and his scrappy style could contribute some PIMS.
As a result, though Ellis' demotion is disappointing news to fantasy owners, there may be a silver lining. When the season rolls on and injuries inevitably start to pile up Ellis could be returning to the NHL just in time to help solidify your blueline.