You can choose as many stats as you want for fantasy pools, but I’ve found that there are six categories that consistently come up and they include: goals, assists, plus/minus, penalty minutes, power play points and shots on goal. Shooting the puck is important because points are allocated for shots on goal and goals. If you get lots of both you’re going to be on the power play and get power play points. Penalty minutes also count, so ideally you’re looking for someone that can score goals and get penalty minutes. You’re essentially looking for a power forward along the lines of Rick Nash or Jarome Iginla. Today we’ll take a look at a few of Dobber’s top ranked power forward prospects and examine their potential for multi-stat pools.
Last week I wanted to end every column with a series on underrated prospects. It caused some confusion with readers and takes away from the general theme of the column so I have stopped doing it.
Max Pacioretty, Montreal, LW, 6’2, 205 pounds – 22nd overall in 2007
One thing about power forwards is that they develop slowly and Pacioretty is no exception. He’ll turn 23 a month into next
season and although he was producing last season, injuries are an occupational hazard for power forwards. Pacioretty
suffered a severe concussion and a non-displaced fractured fourth cervical vertebra in his neck after being hit into a
glass partition between the benches by Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara. By all accounts “Patches” is healthy again and
ready to play. He got married this summer (usually a good thing for players) and worked out with notoriously hard worker
Martin St. Louis.
Pacioretty is blessed with speed which is rare for a power forward. He has the potential to be a point-per-game power forward at some point in his career. He led the Canadiens in scoring over his last 20 games with 11 goals and six assists so he was emerging as a go-to guy already. Based on his production last season Pacioretty should be good for 25 goals and 45 points to go along with 70 PIMs. Look for him to miss a few games to injury but he should get 225 shots and about 15 power play points. His plus/minus has never been great so I’d expect it to be anywhere from even to +5.
Luke Adam, Buffalo, C, 6’2, 210 pounds – 44th overall in 2008
Adam surprised a lot of people with his AHL production last season. A relatively weak skater, most had him pegged as a good
third or fourth line NHL centre, playing a sound, responsible defensive game. Prior to last season’s point per game AHL
output, Adam had only one standout year. In his final season of junior he scored 49 goals in 56 games partly due to his
ability to out-muscle people in the front of the net. He wasn’t supposed to be able to do the same thing in the pros and
yet he won AHL Rookie-of-the-Year with 29 goals and 62 points in 57 games. Now he’s in a position where Buffalo need big
forwards and he’ll get an opportunity to play third line minutes and test the top-six waters to see what he can do in the NHL. He’s not worth drafting this season, even in a multi-stat league, but he’s going to be a valuable second tier power forward in as little as one season.
Shawn Matthias, Florida, C, 6’4, 225 pounds – 47th overall in 2007
Unlike Pacioretty, it feels like Shawn Matthias has been a prospect forever. Matthias has been on my radar for years, but
has yet to break through. Matthias, however, is a real monster and if he can improve his skating sufficiently, he could
produce second line power forward numbers. Although he has good hockey sense and size, M