We are making our way through the last unofficial week of summer, with Labour Day just around the bend. That means training camps are on the way soon, with rookie camps first, so draft season is nearly upon us. Some may have happened already, but September is when things really start to get rolling.
Unfortunately for us, fantasy hockey data lags far behind other major sports. It is just the nature of having a much smaller fan base. For that reason, I wanted to look at some data that we do have at this early portion of draft season.
Underdog Fantasy is a website I've mentioned before in these Ramblings. They have Best Ball formats for NHL, which is a variation of a season-long league. There are no trades, waivers, or free agency – the team you draft is the team you're stuck with. Only a certain percentage of the roster counts towards final standings and that gives some flexibility to the lineup. What they do have is ADP data for over 1000 entries, which can give us a guide as to where fantasy players stand on certain players at this point in time in a multi-cat format. Let's go through some of these ADPs, what the reasoning would be, and where we might find some value.
The scoring in these leagues is a points format that has the following parameters for skaters:
- Goals – 6 points
- Assists – 4 points
- Power play points – 0.5 points
- Shot on goal – 1 point
- Hit – 0.5 points
- Blocked Shot – 1 point
And for goalies:
- Wins – 6
- Goal Against – (-3)
- Save – 0.6
When it comes to raw points, elite goalies tend to have a lower ceiling than elite skaters. Roman Josi out-pointed Igor Shesterkin using this scoring last year by 90 points, and Connor McDavid out-pointed Igor by around 180 points. Value is relative to position, but raw points do matter to an extent. In that sense, prioritizing goalies isn't really necessary for a top finish.
To that end, let's look at some ADP data for multi-cat points leagues where plus/minus isn't a fact