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Fantasy Hockey: Biggest Suprises and Busts so Far: North Division Edition

Is Brady Tkachuk about to take a massive step? If he continues to follow in his brothers shoes he might be. In Part 3 of this Fantasy hockey series, I'm going to look at 1 player that looks like a potential surprise/bust from every Canadian hockey team. Without further adieu, I hope the players on your team are listed as surprises and let's get started.


Should be noted that all ADPs and Rostering % come from ESPN.

Previous Editions:

West Division

East Division

Calgary:

Disappointment: Mark Giordano 97% rostered

A year and a half removed from his Norris trophy year, Mr Young and Fresh still has significant pull in Fantasy circles. With an ADP of 47, there are some big expectations that come along with Giordano this year. However for the first time since Dougie Hamilton was traded away, the Flames captain has lost his powerplay spot. While only 11 of Giordanos 31 points last season came on the powerplay, he scored 21 on the powerplay in 2018-2019. He shouldn't have a bad season by any means, but that norris level ceiling, is certainly out of the question.

Surpise: Rasmus Andersson 21% rostered

Calgary hasn't really had anyone of fantasy relevance in most formats besides Gaudreau, Monahan, Tkachuk, Lindholm and Giordano for the past few years. Rasmus Andersson may have made his way into that category so far this year. The reason being? He has taken Giordanos spot on the first powerplay unit that is stacked with the Flames best offensive talents. So far Andersson has mustered an ES assist, a PP assist and an empty net goal. Throw him on your watch list, or pick him up if you need a budget upgrade on D


Edmonton:

Disappointment: Jesse Puljujarvi 31% rostered

There were really limited expectations for Jesse, so the dissapointing part more has to do with his usage than his performance. Listed are some of the forwards on the Oilers who have seen more ice time than Puljujarvi: Josh Archibald, Dominik Kahun, Alex Chiasson, Kyle Turris, and Zack Kassian. Disregarding the usage of Neal and Chiasson on the first powerplay, my issue here is the Oilers insistance on running Josh Archibald or Zack Kassian on a line with McDavid. If you want your struggling 4th overall pick to resurrect his career, put him in a place to do so. If I was an Oiler fan it would be infuriating, I am sure it is for Puljujarvi owners as well.


Surprise: Mikko Koskinen 74% rostered

Despite a .905% SV and 3.21 GAA, Koskinen has started all 6 games from the Edmonton Oilers. With Smith on the LTIR and Stuart Skinner the only other deployable option for Edmonton. Koskinen is going to start a ridiculous amount of games this season. Even if he lets in 3-4 goals a night, Draisaitl and McDavid will certainly have nights where they score more than that. When those players get hot, Koskinen will provide a solid floor for fantasy owners.


Montreal:

Disappointment: Carey Price 97% rostered

Price is doing Price things. He had an outing with a .971% Save percentage against McDavid and the Oilers, sandwiched between two abysmal performances against the 2-4 Canucks. Montreal has serious playoff hopes this year and appear to be favouring a tandem between Price and fellow Habs netminder Jake Allen. Drafting Price around his ADP of 70 isn't necessarily horrible, but the presence of a reliable backup is going to be wildly frusturating. Carey Price owners basically have the complete opposite of a problem compared to Mikko Koskinen owners.

Surprise: Nick Suzuki 82% Rostered

Those who bought in to the Nick Suzuki bubble hype have got to be celebrating. The budding superstar has started the season on a 5 game point streak and is seeing first line and first powerplay minutes,. It seems Montreals decision to move on from the #1 center Max Domi experiment was the right one.

Ottawa:

Disappointment: Evgenii Dadonov 79% rostered

Dadonovs success last season came with riding the coat tails of Barkov and Huberdeau. The early signs of Dadonov in Ottawa are by no means bad. But he is not the number one offensive priority in Ottawa and while his minutes on special teams have been promising, he is not seeing ice time with Ottawas top line of Tkachuk-Batherson-Norris. This could change.

Surprise: Brady Tkachuk 98% rostered

With an ADP of 98, Brady had some big expectations entering this season.

When you compare Brady with his brother, they both took very similar jumps in there D1 and D2 seasons. Matthew in his first two seasons scored at .63 and .72 ppg paces. Brady on the otherhand scored at a .63ppg in his first two seasons albeit on much worse Ottawa Senators teams. While what did Matthew do in his D+3 year? 34 goals and 77 points in 80 games. Brady so far this season has visibly looked more impactful on the ice. With 4 points and 19 shots in the teams first 5 games, Brady could be looking to make a jump to that point per game stratosphere this year

Toronto:

Disappointment: Frederik Anderson 96% rostered

DON'T PANIC. Freddy will be fine, I think. Despite an .898 SV% and 2.81 GAA through his first 5 starts, Anderson has picked up 3 wins. The stats aren't pretty but he is providing a decent floor. North division goalies Matt Murray, Carey Price, Braden Holtby, and Mikko Koskinen all have allowed more goals per game than Freddy. While he may not be the vezina goaltender the Leafs fans make him out to be, Freddy has a very safe floor as an above-average goaltender on a good team. He's going to be fine he just might not give you that 5th goalie off the board upside you were looking for when you drafted him.


Surprise: John Tavares 99% rostered

After only 58 points last year John Tavares has so far calmed down the Leafs fan base. His contract is big but it is not the end of the world. The guy has 7 points in 6 games despit no longer playing with Mitch Marner. He's a great hockey player and has proved a lot of people who were worried about his longevity wrong.


Vancouver:

Disappointment: Jim Benning

Loui Eriksson cap hit: 6,000,000

Tyler Myers cap hit: 6,000,000

Brandon Sutter cap hit: 4,375,000


Jacob Markstrom cap hit: 6,000,000

Tyler Toffoli cap hit: 4,275,000


Alright anyways, besides Holtby having a below average start to his Canuck career, Pettersson has 2 points and 16 shots through 7 games. Both in fantasy and for the struggling Canucks, thats really not good enough.

Surprise: Quinn Hughes 96% rostered

So I guess some people aren't all that smart, but Alexander Edler has a higher ADP than Quinn Hughes on Yahoo. I guess some people were scared of a sophmore slump, buuut Quinn Hughes is basically the embodiment of the Vancouver Canucks. The top dogs (besides Petey) have been on a tear, everyone else has been holding them back.

Winnipeg:

Disappointment: Patrik Laine 98% rostered

Patty Laine may not have loved playing in Winnipeg, but Fantasy owners will definitely miss having him recieve passes from Blake Wheeler and Mark Schiefele. While Laine is sure to have a big role in Columbus, the Jackets play a very defensive minded style of hockey due to being starved off Offensive talent. We will see what happens but if you have Laine and have Columbus fans in your league, now is your chance to maximize on his value.


Surprise: Nikolaj Ehlers 78% rostered

Ehlers is in a fantastic position to succeed with Laine out of the picture. In the qualifying round against the Calgary Flames last summer, Ehlers really stepped up his game (in a small sample size) when Laine got hurt. Ehlers has gotten off to a great start this season with 4 points and once he starts seeing a healthy dose of minutes with Pierre Luc-Dubois, he could really blow his ADP of 186 out of the water. He's probably not available, but if he is....


Thanks for reading, and let me know what other surprises/disappointments are on the horizon in the Canadian division!


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