We are now less than a month away from the start of the 2009-10 NHL regular season, and I think it's a great time to start publishing my fantasy preview articles for each NHL team.
When looking at a player and predicting how he will fare offensively this season, there are a many things to consider. Is the player at an age where he will improve or decline? Is he playing with new line mates this year? Did his team acquire some players who may push them down the depth chart?
Those are just a few of the questions needed to be asked and I believe I can accurately predict a player's point totals for the upcoming season. Of course, things like injuries are impossible to predict, so these are best case scenarios.
2009-10 Depth Chart
Thomas Vanek-Derek Roy-Drew Stafford
Clarke MacArthur-Tim Connolly-Jason Pominville
Nathan Gerbe-Paul Gaustad-Jochen Hecht
Dan Paille-Adam Mair-Patrick Kaleta
Andrej Sekera-Toni Lydman
Chris Butler-Craig Rivet
Henrik Tallinder-Steve Montador
Sure Bet: Thomas Vanek
Only 25 years of age, Vanek is a pure goal scorer, as evidenced by the fact that he scored 119 goals in the last three seasons combined. He scored 40 goals last season, despite missing nine games with a broken jaw.
Dark Horse: Tim Connolly
A very talented player, Connolly scored at a point per game pace last season. There is just one problem: injuries. This guy has only played in 100 games over the last three seasons and is always a concern.
2009-10 Scoring Projections
1. Thomas Vanek 80-44-36-80
2. Derek Roy 82-27-48-75
3. Jason Pominville 79-28-45-73
4. Tim Connolly 68-21-44-65
5. Drew Stafford 81-23-35-58
6. Clarke MacArthur 75-19-23-42
7. Dan Paille 77-13-21-34
8. Craig Rivet 79-4-30-34
9. Jochen Hecht 74-10-23-33
10. Andrej Sekera 80-7-24-31
11. Paul Gaustad 75-10-19-29
12. Toni Lydman 81-5-22-27
13. Nathan Gerbe 76-10-13-23
14. Adam Mair 74-5-13-18
15. Henrik Tallinder 77-3-10-13
16. Chris Butler 78-5-7-12
17. Patrick Kaleta 68-3-8-11
18. Steve Montador 79-1-10-11
1. Ryan Miller 39-25-6 .920 SVP 2.47 GAA
2. Patrick Lalime 4-5-3 .903 SVP 2.86 GAA