Eric, Jordan and Marc Staal will all be in the NHL this season. Can the three of them combine for 200 points? I think it’s possible.
In Carolina, many of the so-called pundits are predicting a bit of a rebound from last season’s playoff miss. That’s certainly not unreasonable given the fact the Canes will have a healthy Cory Stillman in the lineup this time around. Stillman was a fixture on Eric’s line when the eldest Staal exploded for 100 points in 2005-06. He will get there again.
In Pittsburgh, coach Michel Therrien unveiled his opening night lines. Jordan will begin on left wing with Sidney Crosby and Petr Sykora, Evgeni Malkin will center Ryan Malone and Mark Recchi, while Erik Christensen will center Gary Roberts and Colby Armstrong. Naturally, Therrien is known to juggle his lines frequently, but the fact of the matter is Jordan did not play with Sid the Kid last season. He is getting a look on that line now. Suddenly, having a 75-point campaign is not really a stretch for the 19-year-old.
Marc Staal has made the New York Rangers. A big defensive defenseman, Marc will never really be a huge asset fantasy-wise. It’s the intangibles that make him a great player – and that just does not translate into big fantasy returns. He may flirt with the 45-point plateau once or twice in his career, but generally speaking he will notch 25 to 35 points. If he does that this year then the brothers will have their 200…
Injuries, from a fantasy league perspective: Ales Kotalik (knee) has not yet been cleared to skate. Offense-minded youngster Clarke MacArthur will take his spot on the roster and Jochen Hecht will take MacArthur’s place on the Jason Pominville/Tim Connolly line. Last season, Hecht was quite productive when Kotalik was on the shelf, so he warrants taking a flyer on in roto leagues…
Farm Report: Devin Setoguchi and Torrey Mitchell have made the Sharks. Both have offensive potential down the road, but only Setoguchi has potential for immediate return. He could produce in that 40- to 50-point range…Mason Raymond bears watching in Vancouver. He made the squad – somewhat of a surprise – and will begin the season on a line with the Sedin twins. You can see the potential there.
Comments? Leave them in the fantasy hockey feedback section .