Top 10 Playoff Duds

Tom Collins

2020-09-21

Regular season hockey pools aren't usually impacted by poor postseason performances, but smart fantasy general managers can use the playoffs to bolster their roster for next season.

As mentioned last week, selling high after a good postseason run can help your fantasy squad. However, a poor postseason shouldn't impact the fantasy value too much. We're talking small sample sizes for many players. Come draft time in one-year leagues, are you going to care that Evgeni Malkin had only one point in four postseason games? In keeper leagues, are you going to let a three-game sweep of the Rangers devalue Kaapo Kakko's pointless postseason debut? The answer to both should be a definite no.

However, for some players, the postseason was either the start of, or the continuation of, concerns for next season and is something fantasy GMs need to be aware of. Some players who struggled throughout the regular season saw those problems extend into the playoffs despite a four-month break. For others, they were shifted around the lineup in such a way that doesn't bode well for next year.

Below are 10 players whose poor postseason could be a harbinger for next year.

10. Ondrej Kase

Coming into the 2019-20 season, it appeared as if big things were on the way for Kase if he could stay healthy. He couldn't stay in the lineup, and his production dropped off as well. Going to a more talented team in Boston gave some fantasy general managers some hope, but the playoffs may have dashed whatever optimism they had. He had four points (all assists) in 11 postseason games while playing less than 14 minutes per night.

9. Johnny Gaudreau

Gaudreau had a disappointing regular season, and despite seven points in 10 postseason games, many fans consider his postseason a disappointment as well. Plenty of fans are calling for him to be dealt. I wonder how this may affect his play next year, especially if he gets off to a slow start. Imagine the furor if he has only two points in his first 10 games. No one knows yet if fans will be allowed in the buildings next year, but even if not, there would be tremendous pressure on him should this arise. He wouldn't be the first player to struggle while fans call for his head and it will be interesting to see how he handles pressure.

8. Max Pacioretty

Last year, Pacioretty had 11 points in seven postseason games and was considered a stud. This year he had eight points in 16 games and was a disappointment. Mike Clifford had a great breakdown of some of Vegas' power-play issues last week in this Ramblings, basically saying the team was wrong to try to set up Pacioretty in the slot for a one-timer as Pacioretty has a history of not scoring much in that position. It will be interesting to see if Vegas changes up their power-play usage because of it. 

7. Travis Konecny

In 66 regular season games, Konecny scored 24 goals and 61 points while posting 23 power-play points, all of which led the Flyers, so much was expected for Konecny in the postseason