After a great 2016-17, Nazem Kadri's fantasy stock has plummeted this season.
Ever since finishing last in the league two years ago and getting the first overall pick, the Toronto Maple Leafs have turned a corner and have become a strong playoff team. After qualifying for the postseason for the first time since 2013, the Maple Leafs are once again on track to be playing hockey in late April, currently sitting in third place in the Atlantic Division. However, they’ve been doing this without as much help from one of their forwards, Nazem Kadri. On pace to fail to replicate his fantastic season last year, Kadri’s offensive decline has been hurting the Leafs and the fantasy teams who drafted him.
Drafted seventh overall by the Leafs all the way back in 2009, Nazem Kadri has always shown plenty of offensive potential. After a year that saw him tally 44 points in 48 games as a 22 year old, many thought Kadri would only keep improving and become one of the most dangerous offensive forces in the game. Yet it would take Kadri a while to get back to those heights, as in the following season he only scored 50 points and in the next he only registered 39 points in 73 games.
Last year though Kadri finally broke out, tallying new career highs in goals and points. With his 31 goals and 61 points, Kadri was a valuable asset to all fantasy teams that were lucky enough to draft him. His 231 shots on goal were the 26th most by any player in the league while Fantasy Hockey Geek ranked him as the 36th most valuable skater in the NHL (in an average 12-team Yahoo league measuring G, A, PPP, SOG, and Hits).
But this year, things have taken a different turn. Through 45 games, Kadri has not even come close to providing the value he recorded last year. Using our Fantasy Hockey Geek tool we can see that Kadri hasn’t stacked up well against the rest of the players in the league this season (using an average 12-team Yahoo league measuring G, A, PPP, SOG, and Hits).