Fantasy Hockey Poll: Future Draft Fallers

Rick Roos

2022-03-23

I'm not actually in any Yahoo leagues, and none of my other leagues have categories perfectly aligned with those scored in standard Yahoo leagues, namely G, A, +/-, PPPts, HIT, SOG, W, SO, SV%, and GAA. Those things having been said, I find Yahoo draft averages to be a very good way to assess a player's value before I conduct my own drafts. For example, it allows me to see who might slip to a later round or could get snatched up early, and to help tier players, particularly goalies. It's also a useful exercise to look back at this stage of a season and see where players were picked where, and that's the area on which we'll focus for this month's poll.

Of course every season some players' on ice performance will not have befitted them having been picked as early a round as they were. The question is, which players will never again be drafted as early as they were for the 2020-21 season. For clarity, I don't mean picked later for just next season, as it's safe to say most if not all of these players indeed will be chosen in a later average round for 2022-23. I'm talking about at any point over the rest of their careers – that is, I'm referring to players who, no matter what, will never again be drafted, on average, as early as they were for 2021-22.

What that means is you should vote for every player (i.e., none, one, some, or all) who you think won't be selected, on average, in any Yahoo draft in any future season earlier than what was their overall average selection for 2021-22. Lastly, you might not see several seemingly obvious names on this list, as I tried to pick players for whom there might be uncertainty, versus guys where it's essentially a foregone conclusion they won't ever be picked, on average, earlier again than they were for 2021-22. Also, I omitted players who are no longer fantasy relevant even in pretty deep leagues.

With all that out of the way, here are the 20 voting choices, in alphabetical order with their 2021-22 average Yahoo draft position in parentheses. Your task is to vote for any of the 20 you believe will never get picked, on average, that early again for any future season.

Tyson Barrie (62nd overall)

As disappointing as Barrie's season has been, let's not forget that poolies were ready to stick a fantasy fork in him after 2019-20, only to see him be reborn in the form of the leading d-man scorer in the entire NHL. Granted, he's now 30 and Evan Bouchard is looming; however, it might be premature to declare Barrie duzno.

MacKenzie Blackwood (114th overall)

I know I raised a few eyebrows when I dug up some negative data and comparables in covering Blackwood in a Goldipucks column right before this season. Yet when he has managed to play this season he's done nothing to disprove my findings. Also, Nico Daws has performed well enough at just age 21 to look like he could end up being the chosen one, although Blackwood is still only 25, so never say never I suppose.

Jordan Binnington (85th overall)

On pace to see his GAA rise and SV% fall for the third straight season, Binnington has essentially lost the St. Louis starting gig. Still,