With no relevant games on in the next few days, the All-Star game is all we really have to talk about, but since everyone gets quickly bored with the festivities, let’s look at some all-stars of our own.
The first All-Star team for cap leagues:
David Pastrnak (RW) – Boston Bruins
Cap Hit: $6,666,666
The NHL goals leader is being paid only $666,666 more than Milan Lucic (sorry Flames fans). Compared to the two names chasing him in the Rocket Richard Trophy race, who are making over $20 million combined, Pastrnak is on one of the best contracts in the league, and still has three years left after this season. That being said, his underlying numbers are a little higher than his career averages. Nothing is overly out of line though, and he is seeing almost a minute more of ice time per game, with half a minute of that being on the powerplay. If the ice time keeps up, that should counter any small statistical corrections over the rest of the year. The 100+ point and 60-goal paces are real.
Nathan MacKinnon (C) – Nashville Predators
Cap Hit: $6,300,000
MacKinnon isn’t scoring quite as much as Connor McDavid, but he is being paid about half as much, as a result, becomes the most valuable centre in cap leagues to this point in the season. With line mates Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog both having missed time, MacKinnon kept clicking just the same. As it turns out, MacKinnon scores at a higher rate without either of Landeskog or Rantanen on his wing. Is it too bold to say he leads the league in scoring by the end of the year? It shouldn’t be.
Jonathan Huberdeau (LW) – Chicago Blackhawks
Cap Hit: $5,900,000
Huberdeau doesn’t get the same love as the other two forwards on the list, but he’s just as deserving. With 65 points thus far, and doing it with eerily similar deployment to previous years, it’s only a couple of high percentages that are all that different. However, if we knock Huby’s overall shooting percentage and his team’s five on five shooting percentage down to normal levels, it would put him right around last year’s pace. A 90-point player for under $6 million is rare. A 90-point player pacing for 110 points, with an additional three years on his contract, is something very special.
Anthony DeAngelo (D) – New York Rangers
Cap Hit: $925,000
DeAngelo had a couple hiccups early in the season when he was losing powerplay time to both Jacob Trouba and Adam Fox, however of late he has been making the most of his opportunities. Capped off with five points in an early January game, DeAngelo is going to be cashing in after betting on himself with a one-year contract at a rookie price. For now, he is one of the best bargains in the fantasy game, though some owners may be hoping for his peripherals to rebound a little to the rates they were at a season ago.
Roman Josi (D) – Nashville Predators
Cap Hit: $4,000,000
All it took for Josi to get some Norris consideration was to pace for over a point-per-game going into the all-star break. Unfortunately for him, he picked the wrong season, as John Carlson is pushing to be the first defenceman to hit triple digits in 30 years. However, for the purposes of our list today, Josi is worth almost twice as much as Carlson, as Josi is getting paid half the amount that Carlson is. His extension for over $9 million per season means that he won’t be on this list next year, but Josi has certainly earned the distinction this year.
Tristan Jarry (G) – Pittsburgh Penguins
Cap Hit: $675,000
There are a few worthy names for this spot, but only one of the best bargain goalie contracts got a real-life All-Star appearance, and it is that kind of season at a price below the league minimum contract that it takes to be the final name on the list today. Jarry is due for a big raise next season, and he complicates things in Pittsburgh moving forward, but for the time being, him and Matt Murray will be able to backstop the Penguins to another respectable finish in a very competitive Metropolitan division.
If you have questions, comments, or article requests, you can find me on Twitter @alexdmaclean.
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