Dobber’s 2014-15 Pre-Season Calder Picks – Part 1

MD

2014-09-12

FilipForsberg

Dobber counts down his Top 20 candidates for the 2014-15 Calder Trophy

Every year in my Fantasy Hockey Guide I present readers with a list of 40 to 50 possibilities for the NHL’s rookie-of-the-year trophy with mixed results. And by “mixed” I mean terrible. It’s fairly easy to nail one of the top three, but each year there are two or three surprises that pop up due to circumstance – and a player taking advantage of thatopportunity given. So while listing 50 players (as I did in this year’s Guide) seems excessive, it really is the only way to capture all the rookies who end up making an impact.

Last year, everyone had Nathan MacKinnon on their lists. And if those lists grew to the Top 20, then Tyler Johnson probably appeared on most. But you would have to expand to a Top 50 or more to even dream of putting Ondrej Palat on there.

Here are players 20 through 11. You’ll need to buy the Fantasy Guide to see the Top 50 in its entirety (but there are better reasons to buy it than that – such as ‘the desire to win’).

 

20. Scott Kosmachuk, Winnipeg – A spot is winnable, but it was more winnable prior to the Jets signing TJ Galiardi. Kosmachuk is coming off of a 101-point season with Guelph of the Ontario League and is probably not NHL ready. He needs to add strength and bulk (185 pounds). But the Jets need offense and this is one roster that actually has several spots that could be won if a prospect made a strong case in training camp. Let me put it this way – if Kosmachuk has a good enough camp to win a roster spot, he’ll be in the Calder mix. It’s just that Step 1 will be tough to achieve. Read Kosmachuk’s fantasy profile here.

19. Johnny Gaudreau, Calgary – Gaudreau’s odds were much better before the team signed Devin Setoguchi. Gaudreau is possibly the most offensively talented player in Calgary’s prospect pipeline, and that includes Sam Bennett. He is coming off a Hobey Baker win (top college player in the country) thanks to a ridiculous 80 points in 40 games and in his only NHL game last season he scored. If he was 6-0, 190 pounds he’d be a shoe-in. But he’s 5-9, 160 soaking w