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 continue with the Atlantic Division. Plenty of stud players for fantasy poolsters to familiarize themselves with, so lets keep it going with the Boston Bruins.
The Elite Suite – Solidifying his place as one of the top goaltenders in all of hockey, Tuukka Rask took home hardware to prove it in the form of the 2013-14 Vezina trophy. With a no doubt 35 win season and eye popping peripherals in front of the big bad Bruins expected this season, Rask figures to be just starting his stay in the Elite Suite.
Dependable Joe – When you’re able to stand out on the 2014 Canadian Olympic team like Patrice Bergeron did, you know he’s a special player who plays winning hockey. Resting Bruins fans assured of all the little things taken care of, Bergeron is a safe 20 goal, 60 point performer with top of the league +/- and faceoff prowess year after year. Dynamic duo status for Milan Lucic and David Krejci hasn’t been bountied about town, but people in Boston know how important this combination is. With rotating right wingers over the years, Lucic continues to get you fantasy gold goals and PIMs, while Krejci is apt to be top 10 in assists on a consistent basis. You really can’t go wrong with the big man, Zdeno Chara, on your fantasy roster as he serves the proverbial glue role. A good bet for 15 goals and 40 points from the blueline, Zdeno often mucks it up with PIM production as well. Many of those points come on the powerplay, while still being a plus player, so go after Chara if you can get him.
Risky Plays – The sophomore slump has been known to bite, and after missing the first week of training camp, Torey Krug is a prime candidate. Also, consider that Dougie Hamilton is sure to be used in more offensive situations this season, so Krug’s opportunity to create may diminish. His contract dispute counterpart, Reilly Smith, was on an impressive pace during the first half of the season but saw his production drop off in the second half. Unless he finds a balance and can back up that 51 point total, he may drop to a third line role and become less valuable in fantasy hockey.
Sleeper Seeker – This guy was underrated in Dallas for years, but Loui Eriksson has struggled mightily the past couple seasons and was often seen on the team’s third line. With the timeless Jarome Iginla gone, Eriksson can slide in next to Lucic-Krejci and quite possibly reclaim 30 goal, 70 point glory. A classic buy low player with a potentially fruitful role. The youngster Dougie Hamilton is of stud Canadian D man ilk, and will begin the transition to one day take over this team’s blueline from Zdeno. With all kinds of puck poise from the blueline, Dougie is sure to improve on last year’s numbers. Brad Marchand’s game took time to get going last season, which downgraded him in the eyes of fantasy poolsters. When you look at the tale of the tape though, you see Marchand had a second career 25 goal season with good periphery numbers, so expect the same this time around.
Rookies Ready to Break the Ice – Ryan Spooner didn’t have exceptional offensive numbers in junior, but upon reaching the pro ranks of the AHL, he put up an impressive near point per game pace. Another young player eager for a spot is Moscow, Russia born Alexander Khokhlachev who produced during the regular season and playoffs for the Providence Bruins. With the Bruins cap strapped, young players like Khokhlachev and Spooner will be given more of a shot with the big club in Beantown.
Keep Eyes Peeled – The Swedish league veteran, Carl Soderberg, transitioned well into the NHL with 16 goals and 48 points last season. He is somewhat limited in his third line role, but could take a step forward now that he is fully acclimated to the North American game. His offensive numbers aren’t great in his short career, but the former 2009 first rounder, Jordan Caron, could take a right wing role in the top 6 if Eriksson or Smith falters.
For Hockeyland Canada,