Cage Match: Digging deep into the numbers on Kyle Palmieri and Mathieu Perreault, and who is the better fantasy hockey own
This week’s battle (pitting Kyle Palmieri against Mathieu Perreault) comes to you courtesy of a thread in the DobberHockey Forums that I made note of while I was running the recent Cage Match Tournaments. Let this be a reminder – I’m always open to ideas for players to include in these matches, so let me know your suggestions in the comments.
Who should you hitch your fantasy wagon to – Palmieri or Perreault? Do either of these former Ducks teammates have 60+ point potential, or might one or both be in danger of seeing their production falter? You’ve come to the right place for answers – Cage Match starts now!
Career Path and Contract Status
Still two weeks shy of his 25th birthday, it seems like Palmieri has been in the NHL forever. And in part, that’s true, as he appeared in NHL action starting the year after he was drafted (26th overall in 2009). After his initial ten game cameo in 2010, Palmieri saw both his games played and production increase over his next three campaigns, followed by his scoring pace dropping slightly from 2012-13 (41 point full season pace) to 2013-14 (36 point full season pace).
Although he had injury woes in 2014-15 that limited him to only 57 games, Palmieri surpassed the point per every other game pace for the first time in his career (29 points). After being dealt to New Jersey in the 2015 offseason, Palmieri’s production has taken a leap, with him having already equaled his career high in points after only 43 games and besting his top single season goal output after only 35 contests.
Perreault, who just turned 28, took a longer road to the NHL, which isn’t entirely surprising given that he was picked 177th overall by the Caps in 2006. But like Palmieri, once Perreault tasted NHL action he improved with each campaign until, in his case, 2012-13. A 2013 offseason change of scenery courtesy of a trade to the Ducks led to Perrault posting a career best 43 points in 69 games while teammates with Palmieri, after which he opted to sign with the Jets. In Winnipeg, he’s played even better – producing at a 54 point full season pace in 2014-15 and on target for a similar output this season.