Goldipucks and the Three Skaters: Farabee, Guentzel & O’Reilly

Rick Roos


Welcome back to Goldipucks and the Three Skaters, a play on words of the Goldilocks and the Three Bears story. Here though, instead of there being three bowls of porridge, I cover three skaters and declare one too hot (i.e., doing unsustainably better than he should), another too cold (i.e., doing unsustainably worse), and a third “just right” (i.e., producing where he should be). In addition, I also assign each a rating of 1-10, indicating just how hot (rated 7-10, where 10 is the most unsustainably hot), or how cold (rated 1-4, where 1 is the most unsustainably cold), or how “just right” (rated 4-7, where 5.5 is the most “just right”) he is.

With the tentative end of the season just over a month away, it's more important than ever to figure out what lies ahead for your players, whether it's to gear up for fantasy playoffs, to think about keepers, or to make trades. While I can't cover everyone, hopefully this will help you reach the right decisions with respect to three players, who this month are Joel Farabee, Ryan O'Reilly, and Jake Guentzel. To see if your finger is on the fantasy pulse, take a moment to guess which of the three you believe is too hot, who's too cold, and who's just right, then read on to learn if you scored a hat trick with your guesses.

Joel Farabee (stats for him and the other two players are current through April 3rd games)

Prior to this season Farabee had fared well after being drafted 14th overall in 2018, playing point per game hockey in college in 2018-19 then spending nearly all of 2019-20 in the NHL, where he posted a respectable 21 points in 52 games. Given the forward depth on the Flyers however, and Alain Vigneault not being known as a particularly offense-friendly coach, expectations were modest for Farabee going into 2020-21. Instead, Farabee posted four points in the first game of the season and since then has kept up a strong scoring pace. Is this a case of short-term unsustainably strong play? Just the opposite, as what we're seeing is likely him just scratching the surface.

Much has been made of Farabee's high Shooting Percentage, but the reality is he just might be a very accurate shooter. For one, he's tied for second most posts hit with five, meaning he was inches from a handful of additional goals and an even higher SH%. Also, comparing his SH% and SOG rate for 2020-21 (his age 21 campaign and second in the NHL) to those of other wingers who also had 0.75+ points per game in their age 21 season occurring in their second NHL campaign, the plus side is that they're similar to those of Alex DeBrincat but not so encouragingly comparable to those of Jordan Eber