Patrick Kane

Please remember these rankings are the result of weighing all statistical categories equally, which rotisserie rankings do. Being number one in goal scoring is the same as being number one in penalty minutes. The top 100 favours skaters as they occupy 60 percent of the scoring categories, but dominant goaltenders are recognized.


Also, because the season is only six games old, these are pre-season rankings and are based on an average of the projections of all the major fantasy publications, and not my opinions. The top 100 is a representation of what the fantasy community believes is in store for the coming season.


On November 15th we will delve into the 2010 results and see if players like Ilya Bryzgalov are still dominating, or if band-aid boys like Marian Gaborik have pulled groins once again, like a late night masseuse.


1. Alexander Ovechkin

Ovechkin is to fantasy hockey what Kanye West is to douche bags - number one. No surprise to see him lead the list again as it is almost impossible for any fantasy player to overcome his SOG totals, when coupled with his LW eligibility. Ovechkin is an easy choice for the top of this list.


2. Evgeni Malkin

What can the Big Ugly do for an encore? After winning a scoring title, the Stanley Cup and the Conn Smythe trophy, all Malkin has left to conquer is Ovechkin’s grip as the top roto player in the NHL.  He may have to settle for the starting center on the Pascal Leclaire All-Stars in 2010.


3. Sidney Crosby

Crosby has dropped to the bottom of the big three as his durability continues to be his achilles heel; he has yet to complete a full schedule. With Crosby just reaching the age of 22, the question is whether he has had his breakout season and if he can stay healthy.


4. Ryan Getzlaf

Can Getzlaf ascend to the level of the Big Three in 2010? I say he can, and the biggest fear as a Canadian is not whether he can make the Olympic team, but whether he will pull a Jose Theodore and test positive for Propecia and miss the Vancouver games.


5. Corey Perry

Perry’s monster finish (13 pts (8G, 5A) in his final nine games) and strong playoff has vaulted him to the best RW in fantasy hockey. He is on the verge of six-category production and he acts as a daily reminder that the Canadiens foolishly passed on him, Getzlaf, Parise, Richards and Carter for “Tweedle Dee” Andrei Kostitsyn.


6. Marc Savard

When healthy Savard has been a lock for 60+ assists and a yearly threat to crack 100 points. With the introduction of Julien's system, Savard's PP decline has been offset by his renewed defensive awareness. Savard has turned a -19 into a +23 over the last 2 seasons. At 32 he is beginning his descent as a fantasy performer. However, he is playing for a contract, so it is unlikely his numbers decline in 2010.


7. Tim Thomas

Can Mike Palmateer repeat his career season? After struggling to stick in the league for 15 years he finally found the perfect surroundings for success. Paired with Claude Julien, Thomas' penchant for over pursuit and kicking out monster rebounds has been nullified by a disciplined defense that rarely allows second chance opportunities. A repeat of 2009 is unlikely, but another strong fantasy season awaits in the protection of Julien’s system.


8. Alexander Semin

Same old story for Semin, his production depends on his health. Semin’s numbers from last season projected out to 82 games would have totaled 104 pts (45G/59A), 102 PIMs,  40 PPP and 300+ shots on goal. Over his four-year career he has averaged 64 GP, so he is a high risk/high reward player.


9. Roberto Luongo

With the Olympics in Vancouver and plenty to prove after a mediocre playoff, another monster season awaits Luongo. With backup Andrew Raycroft's primary focus being to model the latest Reebok hats and acting as the team strainer, Luongo will get 70+ starts.


10. Jeff Carter

Nobody represents the conservative nature of forecasting point totals better than Jeff Carter. Entering the 2008-09 season coming off a career best 53-point season, fantasy magazine’s went out on a limb and predicted Carter would finish with 52 pts- 58 pts! Better to miss low and claim ignorance, then to miss high and have you remember it. Carter is one of the elite young goal scorers in the game and another assault on 50 goals is realistic.


11. Joe Thornton

Thornton is the Simon Cowell of the NHL, he has the ability to take limited talent and create a fantasy superstar by placing them in the best position to succeed. It is a yearly fantasy game in which people burn up the waiver wire based on ice-time with the Tin Man. With Heatley now patrolling the wing, is 100 assists out of the question? We could be about to witness Hull and Oates 2.0.


12. Olli Jokinen

After a Peter North like explosion on arrival in Calgary (8G in six games), Jokinen hit the wall producing only five assists in his final 12 games. Jokinen possesses all the tools of an elite offensive center, but has suffered a career freefall over the last couple of seasons. He possesses too many red flags for me, but with Iginla and Sutter around for accountability, Jokinen owners can only hope he overcomes them.


13. Mike Green

Twenty-three year old defensemen are not supposed to produce 31 goal seasons. Green produced the highest goal total for a defenseman since Kevin Hatcher’s 34 goals in 1993 and would have been a six-category contributor if he had not missed 14 games with a shoulder injury.


14. Jarome Iginla

Jarome Iginla is one of the elite fantasy wingers in the game. Although he is consistently great, his production totals vary from year-to-year. Over the last five seasons he has produced a 60, 70, 80, 90 and 100 pt pace. Is he an 80+ PIM player or a 40 PIM player?  Iginla is a rewarding but frustrating player to own.


15. Dion Phaneuf

Mr. Kim Bauer looked like he was on his way to fantasy stardom after his 60 pt, 182 PIM 2008 campaign, but he suffered a fantasy regression dropping 13 pts and 82 PIMs in 2009. I didn’t draft Happy Dion, Happy Dion sucks. The only proper course of action is to get angry and bed Sean Avery’s girlfriend and return to the real man you foreshadowed in 2008!


16. Mike Richards

Plenty of owners are wary of Richards entering 2010 because of off-season surgery to repair torn labrums in both shoulders. If anybody can battle through the pain, it is Mike Richards. Richards still managed to produce 80 pts in 2009 nursing numerous injuries. Richards’ strong two-way play and competitive nature make him one of the most productive rotisserie players in the NHL.


17. Nicklas Backstrom

Backstrom started 2009 slowly with only six points in his first 14 games, but when you are feeding bullets to an AK47, sooner or later they will hit their mark. In his 15th game Backstrom had four points, in game 17, five points, and he finished out his final 68 games at a 99 point pace. As long as Ovechkin is healthy, Backstrom will be an elite fantasy center.


18. Brendan Morrow

I was a draft day trade away from eternally hating Brendan Morrow, but I unloaded him and watched with relief as he tore his knee ligaments after 18 games. A healthy Morrow and no Dave Tippet could see increased scoring in Dallas and a return to fantasy prominence for Morrow.


19. Rick Nash

What type of production would we see from Rick Nash if he played with Marc Savard? 79 points with Manny Malholtra? That is unbelievable; it is like teaming Batman with Captain Planet. Is Derrick Brassard ready to don the yellow unitard and fill the role of Robin? If Brassard can stay healthy, Nash's numbers will finally match his potential.


20. Jonathan Toews

Jonathan Toews blossomed in the second half of 2008-09 and began to show the dominant goal scorer that begat the comparisons to Steve Yzerman. Over his final 29 games, Toews produced 29 points (17G/12A), including an 11 game stretch where he potted 11 goals.


21. Ilya Kovalchuk

Kovalchuk’s numbers over his last 42 games: 53 Pts (32G/21A), +3, 27 PIMs, 17 PPP, 149 SOG.

Projected out over a full season: 103 Pts (62G/41A)), 53 PIMs, 33 PP, 291 SOG.

Can we get this guy a real center?


22. Vincent Lecavalier

After establishing himself as a superstar, Lecavalier suffered a major regression in 2009. Was it the nagging injuries, or the rumours of a move to Montreal? After seeing his house here, my money is on him not wanting to leave Tampa.


23. Pavel Datsyuk

Looking at Pavel Datsyuk I am reminded of the George Best quote, “If I had been born ugly, you would never have heard of Pelé.” Except in Datsyuk’s case, I think of the opposite.


24. Steve Mason

As outrageous as Steve Mason's numbers were in 2009, he is still a work in progress. If he struggles, don't abandon ship like Carey Price owners last season. At this point in his young career he still needs Hitchcock, but as he develops he will enter the top tier of goaltenders on his own merit.


25. Dany Heatley

The best line I heard this summer was, “Dany Heatley asked to be traded, who did he kill this time?” It seems unfair that he quits on the Sens and is rewarded by being paired with the best passing center in the game. BIG numbers await.


26. Jason Spezza

Jason Spezza endured the worst season of his pro career staggering to a 73 pt campaign. After three consecutive seasons where he approached 100 pts, Spezza decided killing his coach was better than making the playoffs. It will be interesting to see how he adjusts to life without Heatley, I expect a return to the 80-90 pt range and pray I never have to hear him laugh again.


27. Scott Hartnell

Scott Hartnell is the fantasy equivalent to the big girl at the bar that is surrounded by 5-6 supermodel friends. After all 6 of the models are off the board and you are disappointed to be left with the big girl, you realize she was only fat in relation to her model friends. Hartnell doesn't dominate any category, but his combined contribution in all six categories landed him a top 30-roto finish in 2009.


28. Shane Doan

I will not rest until Doan finishes his career as a Winnipeg Jet. Does lying on the couch watching hockey count as rest? If so, I lied.


29. Zdeno Chara

Zdeno Chara answered all the questions surrounding his 2008 shoulder injury by scoring 19 goals and winning his first Norris trophy in 2009. Although it took Big Z a while to make a fantasy impact, he has become one of the most consistent producers on the back end. Chara has enjoyed eight straight seasons of 95+ PIMs, four straight seasons of 20+ power play points and six straight seasons of 40+ points.


30. Patrick Kane

After treating the rest of the NHL like a cab driver through Christmas, an ankle injury derailed Patrick Kane's breakout campaign. Heading into the Winter Classic, Kane was in the top 10 in NHL scoring, but his desire to play in the outdoor game instead of resting his ankle cost him and the Hawks as his production dropped from 1.2 PPG to 0.35 PPG (7 points in 20 games). He is a fantasy star right now, be when he matures physically and defensively he will becomes a true NHL superstar.


31. Nathan Horton

Nathan Horton is the poster boy for fantasy frustration, but is an example of how long power forwards can take to round into dominant form. It is amazing to think that Horton is in his 6th NHL season and is still only 24 years old. One wonders if the switch will ever go on, but his tantalizing skill set should buy him another season or two from fantasy owners willing to gamble.


32. Cam Barker

Cam Barker finally began to fulfill his monster potential as he matched Brian Campbell's 2009 production at 1/7th of the cost. Add in 29 PP points in 69 games and it begs the question "What was the point of Brian Campbell again?" His final point total is even more impressive when you take into account that he went scoreless in 10 games to finish the regular season.


33. Henrik Zetterberg

In the last four seasons Zetterberg has made substantial contributions in 5 of the 6 major roto categories. The only thing keeping him from the top 20 is discipline. More PIMs Henrik, fantasy owners don’t care about your Selke.


34. David Backes

Backes is one of those players who are overlooked because he only put up 54 pts, but 30+ goals, 160+ PIMs and 200+ shots can come in handy in a rotisserie format.


35. Henrik Sedin

Henrik is one half of the greatest fantasy twins since CJ Parker jogged ever so slowly across the beaches of Malibu in the early 90s. Henrik and Daniel’s dual durability and production has always been amazing. With Daniel’s injury, it will be interesting to see how Henrik produces on his own.


36. Zach Parise

The name Jacques Lemaire is the last thing a Zach Parise owner wanted to hear.


37. Kevin Bieksa

Bieksa recovered from an injury plagued 2008 to post 40+ points as well as scratch the 100 PIM mark. He has a well-rounded game for fantasy, producing big numbers in four of the six relevant categories. Nothing fancy.


38. Alex Burrows

Alexandre Burrows was on his way to another nondescript season (38pt pace) when he was paired with the Sedin twins. He made the most of the opportunity as the move sparked him to finish the season with 26 points (15G, 11A) in his final 27 games (20 points assisted by the Sedin's). If paired with the Sedin's again, he should be able to match his breakout season, but if not he will revert to his previous form. Always be wary of somebody whose production spikes from the Rob Brown effect.


39. Milan Lucic

Milan Lucic throws every hit with bad intentions and at only 21 years old has begun to terrorize the league like nobody since Todd Bertuzzi in the early 2000s. Lucic almost doubled his 2008 production in 2009 with essentially the same ice time. When his maturity and offensive responsibility coincide, lookout. His upside is scary and leaves me wondering where his ceiling ultimately lies. Can you say Sea Bass!!


40. Chris Pronger

Chris Pronger was born to wear a Flyers jersey. He is mean, nasty and the dirtiest player in the NHL. He is no longer the offensive horse of 2007, but at 35 and PIMs a relevant category, his elbows become as potent a weapon as his slapshot. He is still capable of a five-category impact.


41. Martin Brodeur

Re-united and it feels so good. After watching Clemmensen duplicate Brodeur’s numbers in 2009, I am convinced that Marty’s decline has been masked by the Devils system. With the return of Jacques Lemaire to New Jersey, Brodeur should return to the elite fantasy goaltenders in 2010.


42. Jay Bouwmeester

Overrated. (note: overrated does not mean sucks. It means that he has not earned the reputation he has. Perception has not met reality.) It’s late, I mailed this one in.


43. Bobby Ryan

Ryan is an example how letting a player develop in the minors can be beneficial to their future (not that it was Brian Burke’s plan, but more a casualty of Burke capping himself out). When Ryan finally emerged as an NHL player he exploded for 31 goals in only 64 games and may have won the Calder trophy had he played a full schedule.


44. Scott Niedermayer

How long can Niedermayer continue to produce elite fantasy numbers? Lidstrom put up 80 pts at 36 and Zubov had 71 pts at 36. As long as he is motivated, Niedermayer will remain among the elite.


45. Ryan Malone

Has Ryan Malone ever been drafted for his production, or is it for his proximity to his teammates? With Pittsburgh it was Crosby and Malkin. In Tampa it is no different as owners hope he can draft off Lecavalier, St. Louis and Stamkos.


46. Eric Staal

Welcome back Eric Staal! For the last two seasons I contemplated whether or not 2006 was an aberration. After being reunited with Erik Cole, the resounding answer was NO. Staal dominated down the stretch registering 25 points in his last 17 games and a return to the dominant power forward everybody foresaw 3 seasons ago. It looks like the light bulb has finally gone off.


47. Sheldon Souray

A Dirk Diggler All-Star because I wouldn’t touch him with a ten-foot pole. He has the potential to be a top 10 defenseman, but I believe in risk aversion. Just like poker, over 10 years it might cost me 3-4 seasons, but the other 6-7 years I get to avoid his injury plague.


48. Chris Kunitz

Rob Brown 2.0? One can only hope his career can produce a random 115 pt season, a social run where he dates Alyssa Milano, a marvelous receding mullet and a one punch knockout by a goon like Sylvain Lefebvre. Fingers crossed.


49. Mike Ribeiro

You think if I offered up Janne Niinimaa for Ribeiro in a fantasy pool the deal would get done? Why doesn’t Gary Bettman have veto powers on trades? Do you think if the league had a message board that 25 owners would have called Bob Gainey an idiot and claimed collusion because of his previous relationship with Doug Armstrong? If they don’t, they should.


50. Dan Boyle

Doug Wilson is the GM in your pool who offers up his crap for your best players. Since the lockout he has acquired Joe Thornton, Dany Heatley and Dan Boyle for Wayne Primeau, Marco Sturm, Brad Stuart, Milan Michalek, Jonathan Cheechoo, Matt Carle, Ty Wishart and a 1st, 2nd and 4th round pick. Funny, the douche bag in my league who does this named his team the Sharks.


Here are second top 50, to complete the list of 100 (in order):


1. Sheldon Souray

2. Henrik Lundqvist

3. Chris Kunitz

4. Dan Boyle

5. Mike Ribeiro

6. Johan Franzen

7. Sean Avery

8. Derick Brassard

9. Steve Ott

10. Marian Gaborik

11.  Alex Kovalev

12.  Mike Knuble

13.  David Perron

14.  Marc Andre Fleury

15.  TJ Oshie

16.  John Tavares

17.  Shea Weber

18.  Niklas Backstrom

19.  Tuomo Ruutu

20.  Stephen Weiss

21.  Cam Ward

22.  Daniel Briere

23.  Mikko Koivu

24.  Pavel Kubina

25.  Jason Arnott

26.  Ryane Clowe

27.  Jonas Hiller

28.  Zach Bogosian

29.  Evgeni Nabokov

30.  Patrick Sharp

31.  Bryan McCabe

32.  Slava Kozlov

33.  Mikhail Grabovski

34.  Thomas Vanek

35.  Matthew Lombardi

36.  Niklas Lidstrom

37.  Ales Hemsky

38.  Brad Boyes

39.  Mark Streit

40.  Michael Frolik

41.  Sergei Gonchar

42.  Mike Cammallari

43.  Ryan Miller

44.  Travis Zajac

45.  Joe Pavelski

46.  Paul Stastny

47.  Marian Hossa

48.  Niklas Kronwall

49.  Miikka Kiprusoff

50.  Patrik Elias


Write comment
Comments (20)add comment

tedduf said:

duplicate entries Just FYI. Kunitz, Souray, and Ribeiro all listed twice.
October 18, 2009
Votes: +0

Chris Boyle said:

... The Hockey News projected Jokinen @ 74 pts (35G)
ESPN @ 86 pts (40G)
The Score @ 82 pts (32G)
McKeens @ 71 pts (31G)
Looking at his history when he has produced at that level, Jokinen has always put up large shot totals,
close to 80 PIMs and 25-30 PP points. If he returns to a + player that is a SIX category player, how is that
ridiculous? A ranking can fluctuate drastically on the +/- category alone.

These ranking are based on an average of the projections of SIX mainstream sources, It is a consensus of what the fantasy world projects, hardly lacking in common sense. I didn't pull the numbers out of my ass.

As for Sedin, his projections when revised because of injury dropped him out of the top 100, just like Marian Hossa's projection leaves him at 97 when he is a top 20 player.

October 16, 2009 | url
Votes: +1

alwaysfour20 said:

... Also, where's Daniel Sedin? You've got his bro.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

alwaysfour20 said:

... Ummm.... Jokinen at 13? Ahead of Iginla, Kovalchuk, Heatley? I can understand that you just based this all on projections and Jokinen gets the shots and PIM, but this article could have used a bit more common sense.... I don't know any prognosticators who had him ranked that high.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Hardy Berger said:

Ribero is at #49 and 5th in the 2nd 50 as well interesting list but I would only use last season as a guide for full season leagues, in my h2h weekly 8 team league I grabbed Kopitar in the league 9th round and Morrow slipped to the 10th round. I reached for Gaborick (3) and Hossa (5) and basically punted PIMS which have fallen off since the good old goon 70's. Man Tiger williams would be a fantasy stud in this type of league eh?
October 15, 2009 | url
Votes: +0

kriskooz said:

... after I stopped laughing from the very first line in the Ovechkin overview, I finished the article and have to say, kudos. Great piece and really helpful.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

jason said:

... Very nice list, although I must point out one glaring anomaly. David Perron at #63. That one just doesn't make any sense.
October 15, 2009
Votes: -1

Chris Boyle said:

Kopitar Greg, you are looking at things through hindsight after a quick start. This list was based on pre-season projections as Dobber and I thought it would be better to offer that instead of a 6 game sample.

Last season Kopitar ranked 47th in goals, 56th in assists, dead last in +/- and 400th in PIMs.
Gomez had more shots, a better +/- and double his PIMs. His point differential in regards to Kopitar
was negligible in terms of his roto ranking.

Kopitar's -17 acts as a drag on your team and can cost you the +/- category on his own, add in his lack of PIMs and he was not a great roto player in 2009. If he registers a solid +/- in 2010, then his value rises.

In Rotisserie pools guys like Hartnell and Backes provide value because they lead the PIMs categories and are solid enough in other categories not to wipe you out. They are the equivalent to a premier scorer who has no PIMs.
October 15, 2009 | url
Votes: +1

Carl Nussey said:

... Gomez projected for around +3 and 275 shots, Kopitar around -15 and 200 shots. Gomez also with higher PIM. That makes Gomez clearly more valuable despite a few less goals but a few more assists because that -15 is a killer when the average is approximately zero.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Greg Hambly said:

... Regardless of all categories, someone needs to explain how Scott Gomez is more valuable than Anze Kopitar...just don't get it. You can add Milan Michalek to that list also. I am not factoring in Anze's quick start...just the fact that there are guys listed that are not even in the same ballpark as him.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Jeff Angus said:

... Chris, send it to me and I'll update it. I post the articles on Thurs/Fri/Sat.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Chris Boyle said:

Thanks Alex Just realized after your comment that the second 50 I sent was from the skaters list only.
I have resent the bottom 50 which includes Lundqvist, Fleury, Backstrom, Hiller, Nabokov, Miller and Kiprusoff.
October 15, 2009 | url
Votes: +0

Alex said:

... There is an even bigger omission here. I will give you a clue. This guy has started his career with 30+wins, .917 SV%, 2.31 GAA. HENRIK LUNQVIST!
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Jeff Angus said:

great line "Better to miss low and claim ignorance, then to miss high and have you remember it."
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Carl Nussey said:

... This list is for regular Roto leagues where the categories are Goals, Assists, Shots, Specialty goals, PIM, +/-. Accordingly, getting 90 points is somewhat meaningless as that is only one category of many. Kopitar does not make a list like this because he does not shoot or get PIM and only had 9 Specialty goals last year. Even this year he only has 11 shots and no PIM in the first 5 games so he might barely make the list when it comes out based on results rather than just projections.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Chris Boyle said:

... Like I said in the intro, this list is based on an average of the projections of all the major fantasy publications.
Six in total. If Kopitar is not on it, it is because all the main fantasy prognisticators did not see fit to project him having a big year.

Kopitar's quick start will place him in the November 100 I am sure.
October 15, 2009 | url
Votes: +0

Renegade said:

... Man, I wish this list would have come out in Sept.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

Greg Hambly said:

... Huge miss in Kopitar! Adds insult to injury with guys like Bourque, Michalek, Okposo, and Gomez on the list. Could be a 90 point guy this year.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

MM said:

... Thought about Kopitar as well. Also I thought that because 2 goalies account for 40% of the stats, that there would be more on this list. Just a thought.
October 15, 2009
Votes: +0

John said:

... IMO. One glaring name missising. Where is Kopitar
October 15, 2009
Votes: +1
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