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With Sid uncertain, Stamkos takes top center spot

by Matt Cubeta
Beginning today, will release fantasy rankings for each position by day, starting with centers and finishing with goalie rankings on Friday, Sept. 2. We will release the top-175 overall fantasy hockey rankings on Tuesday, Sept. 6. Positions are based on where we project these players to start the season -- they may change when the season begins. Regardless of what kind of league you're in, has you covered for fantasy hockey all year long.

Centers reign supreme in fantasy rankings each season, and 2011-12 is no exception. Easily, one could expect to see five middlemen taken off the draft board in the first round of most leagues. Fortunately, if you've seen your favorite choices go, there are plenty more to choose from as the draft progresses, including some sleepers later on.

But as you're planning your fantasy team, you're likely asking yourself the big question: Will he or won't he? That question, of course, applies to Pittsburgh Penguins superstar Sidney Crosby, who missed the second half of last season with a concussion and is not yet a guarantee to start the season. If the symptoms are gone and he's ready for the season-opener in Vancouver on Oct. 6, Sid is the top fantasy player. If not -- and he hasn't been cleared for contact yet -- No. 87 is a gamble, but one worth taking given his 66-point outing in just 41 games last season.

Crosby's status can quickly change, however. And though you might be uncertain about where to select him, you can rest assured whichever center you do take in his stead will be a fitting choice.

From Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos -- a bona fide superstar who gives Crosby, Alex Ovechkin and Daniel Sedin a run for their money in terms of the best overall fantasy player -- to Logan Couture, who emerged as one of the more dangerous players on the ice, night in night out, this year's crop of centers will help make your fantasy team a contender.

Let the games begin: Fantasy league formats and strategies

Top 175 | Top 50 Breakdown | Left Wings | Right Wings | Defensemen | Goalies

1. Steven Stamkos
2. Henrik Sedin
3. Pavel Datsyuk
4. Evgeni Malkin
5. Sidney Crosby
6. Henrik Zetterberg
7. Ryan Getzlaf
8. Brad Richards
9. Jonathan Toews
10. Ryan Kesler
11. Anze Kopitar
12. Eric Staal
13. Nicklas Backstrom
14. Jeff Carter
15. Claude Giroux
16. David Backes
17. Patrick Sharp
18. Mike Richards
19. Matt Duchene
20. Danny Briere
21. Joe Thornton
22. John Tavares
23. Vincent Lecavalier
24. Logan Couture
25. Jason Spezza
26. Mikko Koivu
27. David Krejci
28. Paul Stastny
29. Jeff Skinner
30. Mike Ribeiro

Just Missed: Tomas Plekanec, Derek Roy, Patrice Bergeron, Travis Zajac, Tim Connolly, T.J. Oshie, Mikhail Grabovski, Stephen Weiss, Jordan Staal, Derek Stepan

Contact Matt Cubeta at

On a weekly basis during the regular season, will answer the most compelling fantasy hockey questions from you, the fans.

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