Fantasy Hockey Poll: Peaking In The Over-30 Club

Rick Roos

2020-05-20

When it comes to owning forwards in fantasy, most would agree that banking on them peaking after age 30 is usually a bad bet. But some defy the odds and produce their best season(s) once they've blown out 30 birthday candles. Let's use this poll to determine which current forwards you think are more likely to produce their best season at or beyond age 30. 

You'll notice that some of the voting choices aren't 30 as yet, which is deliberate. For them, I decided their career trajectory is one where, despite not being 30 yet, they're more likely than not to produce their statistically best season on or after turning 30.

To make things easier, when I mean "best season" I'm talking about points, and, specifically, an 82 game scoring pace, not sheer point total. And for forwards who are already age 30+, they would need to do better than their current best campaign. Lastly, I didn't include anyone who's yet to score at a 50+ point full season scoring pace (including this season), to focus on more fantasy relevant players and since otherwise, it would be too easy to envision them doing better than what they've already done.

And now – drumroll please – here are the 20 voting choices, who are listed in alphabetical order. For each, I posted his current age as well as his best full-season scoring pace thus far, and the season in which it occurred.

 

Cam Atkinson (Age = 30; Best Full Season Scoring Pace = 71 points in 2018-19)

Although his scoring pace for 2019-20 was his worst in five seasons and he's not getting any younger, he did miss time due to injury. And while the team won't have the same firepower in 2020-21 that it did when Atkinson marked his career-best two seasons ago, chances are they'll need to lean on him a lot and he has the skill to establish a late-career high watermark. 

 

Mikael Backlund (Age = 31; Best Full Season Scoring Pace = 53 points in 2019-20)

Not only was Backlund on his way to a career-best in 2019-20, but it was also his third season of the last four in which he had a 50+ point scoring pace, despite second-line ES and PP minutes. And while better deployment is unlikely to come his way, Calgary is improving as a squad, which could pad Backlund's scoring enough for him to surpass his pace from this season. 

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