As part of NHL.com's 30 in 30 series, our fantasy hockey staff is breaking down each team's fantasy landscape. From most valuable assets to underrated options, impact prospects and more, this guide should help fantasy owners prioritize players for drafts.
Starting at the top: Ryan Suter, D
Suter quietly had a very good season, tying his NHL career high with eight goals and setting career highs with 43 assists and 51 points. He was third on the Wild in points and finished tied for ninth in the League among defensemen. Suter played in all 82 games, had a career high 188 shots, and made a big improvement on his power-play totals from 2014-15; he had three power-play goals and 21 power-play points, up from one goal and 11 points the previous season. Drafted on average in the 10th to 11th round, he finished in the top 100 (No. 79) in Yahoo's performance-based rankings last season and was the 12th-ranked defenseman. Suter hasn't had fewer than 37 points in a full NHL season since 2007-08 and makes a case for being a top 10 defenseman.
Undervalued: Charlie Coyle, C/RW
In his third season, Coyle had an NHL career high 42 points (21 goals, 21 assists) but finished outside the top 200. He made the most of his 140 shots with a shooting percentage of 15.0. Although Coyle took fewer penalties (16 PIM compared to at least 28 in each of his first three seasons), he had four game-winning goals and six power-play points (compared to three the prior season). He was second on the Wild in goals and sixth in points. Coyle could be a bargain in the final rounds because he is a good secondary scorer and likely will be on the second power-play unit. He has improved his point total in each of his four seasons, and it wouldn't be a surprise to see him crack 50 points for the first time.
Overvalued: Zach Parise, LW
Parise led the Wild in goals (25) for the second straight season and was second in points (53) but missed all six games of the Stanley Cup Playoffs with a back injury after missing three weeks earlier in the season with a knee injury. At 32, his health is a concern; he has missed 35 games in the past three seasons and his average ice time per game has decreased in his four seasons in Minnesota (from 20:40 in 2012-13 to 19:18 last season). Parise was drafted on average in the second/third round last season, which may be a stretch this season. An eight-time 20-goal scorer and six-time 30-goal scorer, he should top 20 goals if healthy, but his overall points and power-play points could take a dip. Parise will play for Team USA in the World Cup of Hockey 2016 if his back injury has healed, but in doing so, could risk reaggravating it prior to the season.
Sleeper: Eric Staal, C/LW
Staal had a subpar season with the Carolina Hurricanes with 33 points (10 goals, 23 assists) in 63 games before he was traded to the New York Rangers on Feb. 28, where he never quite fit in (three goals, three assists in 20 games). He agreed to terms on a three-year contract with the Wild on July 1 and will try to prove he still can play at an elite level after having scored at least 20 goals in his previous nine full NHL seasons. Staal, 31, should help an offense that ranked tied for 18th (2.60 goals per game) and a power play that ranked 15th (18.5 percent) last season. It wouldn't be surprising to eventually see him on the top power-play unit and pass 20 points with the man-advantage.
Bounce-back: Jason Pominville, RW
Pominville had a forgettable season with an NHL career low 11 goals, and his 36 points were the fewest in a full season since he had 30 as a rookie (2005-06). But the 33-year old had 60 points (30 goals, 30 assists) two seasons ago, including 17 power-play points. Pominville has missed 17 games in the past 10 seasons (seven in 2015-16), so durability isn't a question. The issue is not knowing where he'll play. He could be on the top line with Staal and Parise, or could wind up on the second (with Mikael Granlund and Mikko Koivu) or third (with Nino Niederreiter and Erik Haula). Pominville obviously merits more attention if he plays on the top line, but he's capable of offensive and power-play production as well as a good shots on goal total. Pominville had 187 last season and at least 200 in each of the previous eight full seasons.
Impact prospect: Alex Tuch, RW
Tuch, 20, signed with the Wild on April 13 after scoring 34 points (18 goals, 16 assists) in 40 games with Boston College. Selected with the No. 18 pick of the 2014 NHL Draft, Tuch has size (6-foot-4, 222 pounds) and could be on Minnesota's roster to open the season. Tuch can provide offense, having scored 62 points (32 goals, 30 assists) in 77 games over two seasons with Boston College, and could add a physical element the Wild lack; he had 33 penalty minutes last season. If he doesn't impress enough in training camp to make the roster, he'll be sent to Iowa of the American Hockey League and likely be the first one called up if Minnesota struggles or sustains an injury. He could be worth a pick in the last rounds of a draft, or at least to keep an eye on in the opening weeks of the season.
Devan Dubnyk started 66 games last season (tied for second in the League). He won 32 games (10th), had five shutouts (tied for fifth), a 2.33 goals-against average and .918 save percentage. Dubnyk obviously wasn't going to put up the same numbers he did in 2014-15 after he was traded to the Wild -- 27-9-2 with a 1.78 GAA, .936 SV% and five shutouts and was a Vezina Trophy finalist -- but finished as a top 10 goalie in Yahoo's performance-based rankings last season (ninth). It wouldn't be surprising if Dubnyk is a top five goalie this season. As a result, he's worth targeting in the second or third round. Backup Darcy Kuemper was 6-7-5 with a 2.43 GAA and a .915 SV% in 16 starts last season and isn't worth drafting. He becomes relevant only if Dubnyk is injured.