Greetings readers, welcome to Fantasy Hockey, What’s the Point Man? Honestly, what is the point man? The point man is the player who plays the point on the powerplay, near the blueline. They in many ways run the power play by acting as an outlet for forwards on the half walls, by setting up for seeing eye shots, and by being the last line of defense should the penalty kill counter. The point man could also be considered the player with the most goals and assists. Soldiers, politicians, and even entrepreneurs could play the part of a point man as well. But, What is the Point Man? The point is to dominate your foes at fantasy hockey to win cash and pain inflicting bragging rights. Here is where you can find the scoop to help you get to the top.
As part of Hockeyland Canada’s season preview, each division will be examined one team at a time to identify players to pick and players to avoid. There are six categories of players covered and it’ll begin with the Metropolitan Division. Tons of talent and intriguing players to kick things off right, lets get going with the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The Elite Suite – After a Vezina trophy winning campaign in the shortened 2012-13 season, Sergei Bobrovsky overcame a slow start to show once agin he is an elite netminder in this league. Officer Bobrovsky led his team into the playoffs last season for the second time in franchise history, and with a young growing team in front of him, Bobrovsky will continue to shine in Columbus.
Dependable Joe – A rugged player with offensive ability, Scott Hartnell is a great source of goals and PIM in fantasy hockey. Some people got carried away after his 37 goal campaign, but a 20 goal and 50 point season is a fair play for Hartnell. Heads turned when Columbus forked over big bucks to James Wisniewski back in 2011, and last season, Wisniewski proved why it was a sound investment for GM Jarmo Kekalainen as he put up top 10 numbers among defenseman. With no threat to his role, expect Wisniewski to prove last season wasn’t an aberration. Brandon Dubinsky’s upside is limited offensively but he is a consistent contributor and plays an integral role on his team in all areas of the ice.
Risky Plays – Watching Jeff Carter take his game to the next level in the Stanley Cup playoffs must hurt for the Blue Jackets, but Jack Johnson has played a big role for them since being acquired from Los Angeles. Unfortunately for poolsters, Johnson doesn’t show up in the boxscore nearly enough for the amount of minutes he eats up. Contract negotiations have gotten very heated between Ryan Johansen and the Blue Jackets brain trust. Although his upside is sky high, the risk of missing time and overvaluations based on a surprising 33 goal campaign make the ROI for Johansen owners dicey.
Sleeper Seeker – With an emphasis on drafting and developing, its no wonder that Columbus sleepers are young players in Boone Jenner and Ryan Murray. Jenner put up a respectable 29 points in his rookie year and after a slow start, was particularly effective down the stretch. Look to see Boone carry that over to this season as he continues to grow into a long time NHLer. Likely to be under the radar for many years due to his quiet, efficient game, Murray came into the NHL last season and showed he belongs. All young defenseman take time to get comfortable before they start taking risks offensively and impacting the game on the scoresheet. A player with pedigree like Murray’s should start putting pucks in the net sooner rather than later.
Rookies Ready to Break the Ice – The contract impasse with Ryan Johansen could open the door for another young player to step up, and with top prospect Alexander Wennberg making the move overseas, he will be given that shot. Long been on prospect lists, its time Tim Erixon gets a chance to show what he can do in the NHL. Close to a point per game from the back end for the Springfield Falcons of the AHL, Erixon has done all that he can do in the minors.
Keep Eyes Peeled – NHL bloodlines bode well for Kerby Rychel’s career, but make no mistake, Kerby has higher offensive upside than papa Warren. He’s likely to start in the AHL, but could take advantage if an opening arises. Achieving the 20 goal plateau in the NHL is no small feat, Cam Atkinson has produced at every level and could take another leap this season.
For Hockeyland Canada,