Maybe nothing ruins your fantasy season more than injuries. We’re not just talking about your chance for a championship, although that’s the main goal. Too many injuries can also suck all of the fun out of your season.
After all, for underperforming players, you can always hold out hope that they will bounce back to their normal selves. You can watch their games and see signs of optimism. But when your fantasy team’s IR is longer than an old phone book, you almost want to give up on the season.
Below are 10 players whose injuries screwed your season.
A few ground rules before we start. Timing will play a factor. Missing a month of action in October isn’t the same as missing the past month of action during fantasy playoffs.
Also, we’re not including players that you knew were injured going into the season. So no Carey Price, Jack Eichel, Evgeni Malkin, etc.
Finally, every year when I write this column, I figure there must be someone out there who has seven or so, or maybe even 10 of these players. Odds are likely that person is in a keeper league, but if you do have many of these players and it screwed over your fantasy season, I’d like to hear about it. You can hit me up on Twitter here.
10. Erik Karlsson
If you were banking on a bounce-back season from Karlsson, you may have been a little disappointed. When it comes to points, we saw a big improvement as he went from a point-per-game mark of 0.42 a year ago to 0.70 this year. However, his per game rate for power-play points, shots, hits and blocked shots were still low. If someone isn’t producing at his usual standards, you hope it can be offset slightly by playing more games. However, that doesn’t seem to be possible for Karlsson anymore. It looked encouraging early as he only missed six games due to covid and two games due to an upper-body injury by the middle of January. He then missed almost two months of action after left forearm surgery. He came back for about six weeks, but has now missed the last six games with a lower-body injury.
9. Sean Couturier
You wouldn’t have been the only one who went into the season fooled into thinking that the Flyers were due for a big year. Not only was Couturier a disappointment when in the lineup (an 82-game pace of 48 points after four straight in the 70s), but he only played 29 games. Sure, he’s a Band-Aid boy trainee, but this was ridiculous. He hasn’t seen action since December 18 when back surgery knocked him out for the rest of the season. Many of you may have already dropped him by then, but any hope of a return to normality was quickly squished.
8. Patrik Laine
There may have been some skepticism once Laine went to Columbus, but the change in scenery proved to be beneficial for the 24-year-old. In 56 games this year, Laine was on pace for his first-ever 80-point campaign. He also was on pace for 38 goals, the second-highest of his career. However, he missed 19 games in the middle of the season