How Adam Larsson has stepped up his play in 2015 and what it means for the future.
The young career of Adam Larsson has been a frustrating one both for Devils' fans and for fantasy owners. From a fantasy perspective, the results after four NHL campaigns have been poor to say the least. The former fourth-overall selection has frequently been a healthy scratch and as recently as last year played more games in the minors than he did with his NHL club.
Larsson is a classic case that shows the risk of over-committing to prospects in fantasy circles. Even in the top five there is a lot of risk in assessing their value. Not only are you trying to assess the player's true potential, but also the development time. Some shallower leagues require immediate production from all players while other leagues give you a limited window to stash rookies on a farm roster. In both instances, a prospect that develops slower than expected can turn into a disastrous investment.
Comparables at the Draft
While there is risk that comes with any investment into prospects are not proven at the NHL level, there is a track record of success from other rearguards coming out of the draft. By comparing Larsson to other players drafted in his class (2011) as well as younger players selected in 2012 and 2013, we can see why fantasy owners are clearly frustrated if they invested heavily into an 18-year-old Larsson.