Assist-Heavy Domi and Bailey, Prospects Tournaments
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Prospects tournaments are in full swing right now, and several big-name prospects have been lighting it up.
Second overall pick Andrei Svechnikov assisted on two goals in the Hurricanes’ prospects 4-1 win over the Blues’ prospects. Both Svechnikov and last season’s first-round pick Martin Necas should be able to make the Hurricanes’ opening-night roster. According to Tom Gulitti of NHL.com, Necas has an opportunity to begin the season on one of the top two lines, while Svechnikov probably won’t start the season there. The reason given is that Necas is a year ahead of Svechnikov in his development.
One of these Canes’ prospects is 67 percent owned in Yahoo leagues, while the other is just 5 percent owned. Can you guess which is which? Something to think about as you’re drafting in the later rounds. I’m not saying that Necas will be the better player in 2018-19, just simply that there’s a better chance than you might think.
A Vancouver/Winnipeg NHL matchup during the 2018-19 season will no doubt favor Winnipeg. But for the prospects? How about an 8-2 win for the Canucks’ prospects. Swedish duo Elias Pettersson and Jonathan Dahlen combined to score three goals and three assists. Here’s one of Pettersson’s goals:
— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) September 8, 2018
Pettersson and Dahlen are familiar with each other from the Timra system in Sweden. I’ll expand on a question that I had on Twitter as to whether Dahlen will make the Canucks as Pettersson’s linemate. It probably won’t happen this season, considering that the Canucks already have enough forwards for six forward lines. Dahlen’s chances would have been much better had the Canucks not signed Jay Beagle AND Antoine Roussel AND Tim Schaller. But based on his chemistry with Pettersson, Dahlen has real potential to be a top-6 forward in Van City as early as 2019-20.
Rasmus Dahlin scored two goals and added an assist in the Sabres’ prospects 6-4 win over the Devils’ prospects. I’m going to bet the under on 40 points for Dahlin simply because 18-year-old defensemen do not have a history of taking the league by storm. But I know that there will be some that will disagree with me.
Jordan Greenway has recorded points in both of his prospects games over the weekend. If you want size, he’s got plenty of it (6’6”, 226 lbs.). He’s a strong bet to make the Wild this season after entering the lineup late in the season. He played in all five of the Wild’s playoff games as well, scoring a goal and adding an assist. Keeper owners might require a bit of patience with him, though. Not only might he have a tough time cracking the top-6, power forwards also tend to take a while to blossom.
There was considerable angst amongst Montreal fans (again) when Marc Bergevin traded Alex Galchenyuk for Max Domi. One reason that Habs fans might be down on Domi is the fact that he has now gone back-to-back seasons without reaching the 10-goal mark. Granted, he missed 23 games in one of those seasons. But he played a full 82 in 2017-18, so there shouldn’t have been any excuses.
If Domi is going to have that magical breakout fourth season right on time, he’s going to need to shoot the puck more. Domi has never taken more than 156 shots in a season. With just 150 taken last season, Domi was 197th in that category. Montreal had more than its share of deficiencies, but shot taking wasn’t necessarily one of them (10th with 32.8 SOG/GP). So it’s possible that Domi could bring a playmaking element that was missing for an offense than finished 29th overall in goals scored. That could help his assist totals more than his goals, though.
It’s possible that Domi and Jonathan Drouin could be exactly what each other needs. But unless Domi can’t find a way to take more shots, there won’t be a whole lot of room to grow. He was much more of a playmaker than goal scorer in junior, so we could be looking at another assist-heavy 50-point season.
How much will John Tavares’ departure hurt Josh Bailey – a little, or a lot? You may recall that at the new year Bailey was tied for second in league scoring with 49 points in just 38 games. After that Bailey’s pace fell off considerably to just 21 points in 37 games. (Hopefully you were able to sell high at the midseason point.)
All in all, a total of 53 of Bailey’s 71 points were scored while Tavares was on the ice, including 28 of those on the power play with JT. The second-half downturn in production had nothing to do with less icetime with Tavares, as both Tavares and Anders Lee were both of Bailey’s most frequent linemates in each quarter. Tavares’ production was also down during the second half, from 50 points in his first 42 games to 33 points in his last 39 games.
Even after the slump, Bailey ended 33rd in league scoring. However, there were a couple of items that dropped his fantasy value further in multicategory leagues. One, his 18 goals was the lowest number among all players who scored at least 70 points. In fact, that goal total was a career high for the usually assist-heavy Bailey. As well, his minus-20 was also the lowest total (tied with Patrick Kane) among the same group of players. Now that Tavares is gone, there’s a chance that this number may not improve much, if at all.
Obviously Bailey owners will have to hold out hope that he lines up with new first-liner Mathew Barzal, even though Jordan Eberle had some success on that line last season. The Yahoo rankers probably aren’t optimistic, as Bailey is currently ranked 182. ESPN is perhaps a little more optimistic, placing him at 123. An optimistic projection for Bailey might be about 60 points, but it’s also important to remember that his value likely sags in multicategory leagues for the reasons mentioned above.
From one Islander to another, if you haven’t heard, Josh Ho-Sang will be changing his jersey number from 66 to 26. I personally wasn’t bothered by it, considering that he doesn’t play for the Pittsburgh Penguins. But it sounds like old school Lou has already implemented his team rules, which include a disdain for high jersey numbers and facial hair, both of which seem to be more popular nowadays.
Is this the season that Ho-Sang finally sticks around full time? The Isles will need some young players to pick up the slack in scoring with JT gone, and Ho-Sang is one option. Over the past two seasons in which he has played roughly 20 games each, Ho-Sang has recorded 0.51 P/GP, which is seventh on the team. That’s a better pace than all of Brock Nelson, Ryan Pulock, Anthony Beauvillier, and Andrew Ladd over the same stretch.
Ho-Sang might be the kind of player that Lamoriello doesn’t want any part of, but he’s still the kind of player that the Islanders need to give a long look. Hopefully he doesn’t do anything to hurt his cause.
For more fantasy hockey information, you can follow me on Twitter @Ian_Gooding.
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