Ramblings: Going Through Yahoo’s Left Wing Rankings – August 25

Michael Clifford

2017-08-24

A favourite pastime of many fantasy hockey owners (present company included) is always to dissect the rankings of others. The FantasyPros site makes it easy to access the rankings of several people simultaneously while the bigger sites have theirs. Which reminds me, don’t forget to check out the Dobber Shop to grab your copy of Dobber’s Draft Guide and List!

This exercise isn’t only to gauge your personal rankings against another, but to get a handle on where the public might be heading. Don’t forget that the people who create and utilize their own projections are the minority, so getting a peek at where the herd is going is an advantage.

Yesterday I looked through Yahoo’s centre rankings and some names that stood out to me as too high or too low. Today, I will do the same for the left-wing position. Remember that these are Yahoo positions, standard roto categories (goals, assists, shots, plus/minus, penalty minutes, and power-play points), and assuming 12-team leagues.

 

Johnny Gaudreau – 34th overall

It was undoubtedly a down year last year for the uber-talented left winger, but even a “down” year where he missed 10 games and was likely injured for another good portion still brought 61 points. In fact, he is 1 of 14 players with at least 200 points over the last three seasons, and he’s the youngest player on that list.

The concerns are about his goal-scoring and shot-taking. As for the latter, he actually had a higher shot-per-minute rate in 2016-17 than 2015-16, so the decline in shots per game is a function of lost ice time rather than individual performance.  Also, after shooting over 14 percent through his first 160 NHL games, that fell under 10 percent last year (remember that finger fracture, too). In sum, maybe he won’t reach the goal-scoring heights of Max Pacioretty or Brad Marchand, but I don’t see him being Jonathan Huberdeau, either.

A year ago, Gaudreau was often going somewhere in the second round. His performance last year dropped him a round, but I would argue that’s where he should probably slot anyway even if he is a 75-point player again. He won’t be a huge volume shooter and won’t take many penalties so as a (largely) four-category player, he shouldn’t be a second-round pick. Those wanting to take him somewhere around the top-30, though, are probably going to get their value back.

 

Jonathan Huberdeau – 77th overall