Fantasy Hockey Poll: If Only…

Rick Roos


Fantasy hockey enthusiasts realize that opportunity often matters more than pure talent when it comes to being a successful NHL scorer. This begs the question – how many of today's players could shine if only they were given a true chance to do so? Sadly, in the majority of cases, we can never know. But we can imagine what could happen if they did get such an opportunity.


This is where today's poll comes in. I've listed 20 players whom I think could be very productive fantasy performers if only they were deployed in such a way as to help them succeed. In certain cases they've had tastes of favorable deployment and briefly shined, only to be relegated back to unfavorable playing situations, whereas in others they've never had even a chance. Still, other players are getting okay deployment, but have been saddled with poor linemates or are stuck on low scoring teams. It's up to you to vote for the ones you think would do well if only somehow they were given an extended opportunity. The key is you don't have to believe they necessarily will shine, only that they could if given a true chance to do so.


Which players should you vote for? For forwards, it's if you think they could produce 70+ points if given ample top six and PP Time with good linemates, and for d-men, it's if you believe they could hit the 50 point mark with favorable deployment. In other words, you want to pick guys who could hypothetically do the same thing the likes of Sean Couturier, Tony DeAngelo, Bryan Rust, Shea Theodore, Tomas Tatar, and Ryan Strome have done, namely go from mediocre producer to upper-tier scorer once they had a true, prolonged chance to strut their stuff.


How did I decide which 20 players to include as voting choices? None could have played fewer than 200 NHL games and I didn't include anyone who is over age 30, to limit the choices to those who fall into an ideal range of experience. Also, I didn't include any d-men who'