DFO Fantastic Mailbag: March 24

Nick Alberga: While he almost came out of nowhere this season, it has to be Ullmark, right? I knew he was good; I didn’t know he was that good. If you had asked this question in September, for example, the answer would have easily been Juuse Saros. All other things being equal, it’s hard not to stop someone from winning a Vezina trophy.

As for your other question, give me Jeff Skinner. It’s hard to ignore the attachment to Buffalo’s top six, namely Tage Thompson.

Brock Seguin: Saros, 100%. The skater is a little more difficult, but I lean Kempe. He is four years younger than Skinner and is probably the most reliable goalscorer. Skinner has had a terrific year, but expecting him to repeat career highs in SH% on ice (13.6%) and SH% personal (15.4%) is unrealistic.

Matt Larkins: Linus Ullmark has been just too good this season not keep. Yes, he has constant competition from Jeremy Swayman, but Ullmark will likely win the Vezina Trophy. We must keep the Vézina winner! Adrian Kempe’s cocktail of goals, shots and hits makes him an underrated fantasy asset, but as long as Jeff Skinner keeps rolling on Buffalo’s front line with Tage Thompson and Alex Tuch, the ceiling is right. much higher, so I’m leaning towards Skinner. Amazingly, he is still only 30 as he completes his 13e NHL season.

Is Devon Levi an obvious choice right now for a goalie league?

Nick Alberga: Unequivocally, yes. Just be aware that it may take time for him to put everything in place. For some youngsters it kicks in almost instantly, for others it takes time and they don’t end up becoming major fantasy pieces until their mid-twenties. There’s no doubt that this kid is high profile; we’ll see if he can live up to it. Thank you, Sam Reinhart.

Brock Seguin: Yes. His NCAA numbers are stunning, and it doesn’t look like he has much competition for starts heading into 2023-24. Craig Anderson will likely be retired, and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has had his moments, but he has a 3.62 GAA and .890 SV%, so he looks like Buffalo’s replacement next season.

Matt Larkins: For sure. He is one of the most dominant college goaltenders in recent memory. To me, it’s pretty telling that they’re rolling him with the NHL club despite having three other goalies on the roster. They clearly hold Levi in ​​high regard. Craig Anderson could retire after this season, and although Eric Comrie and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen have had their good times, they have both been dominated by the 41-year-old. The job is therefore to be taken at Levi’s, even if it is only in 2023-24 or 2024-25.

Nick Alberga: The answer is yes. Assuming it’s a non-custodial, there are probably much better options available to you on the waiver wire right now. Don’t think twice. Power is really good, it will just take him time to be a consistent producer at the NHL level. And it’s good.

Brock Seguin: If you’re in a draft league at this point in the season, you have to be ruthless with your roster decisions. Depending on who’s available on the wire, yeah, I wouldn’t hesitate to drop it. He has two tough matchups on Friday/Saturday, then just three games next week. However, if it’s a goalie league, you have to hold it back.

Matt Larkins: He’s never been a particularly good player for me this season anyway. Owen Power’s real-life prospects are very exciting, but big blue players like him can take years to get on the attacking side. His statistical profile does not move the needle in fantasy at the moment. He’ll finish with 30-35 points and be below average in other categories, so you can drop him unless it’s a goalie league.

Nick Alberga: I should start by saying that the prospects are far from my level of expertise. That said, some guys to potentially target: NSH Luke Evangelista, VAN Aatu Raty, CHI Lukas Reichel and MIN Marco Rossi are four guys I would watch. Plus, there are college guys about to turn pro/turned pro: ARI Logan Cooley, TOR Matthew Knies, BUF Devon Levi etc.

Brock Seguin: Devon Levi. He’ll probably be the Sabers’ number one goaltender next season, so he’ll probably be the top fantasy rookie not named Conor Bedard next season. It’s usually hard for rookies to make a splash, but if you’re the No. 1 goalie on your team, you’ll be very valuable.

Matt Larkins: Can I cheat and name an NCAA player who will win half a dozen games in a few weeks? If so, Logan Cooley would be my answer. I expect him to turn pro after the University of Minnesota season ends and play a handful of games for Arizona before the end of this season. I could see him going over 60 points as a rookie next season. Guys who have played NHL games before? I would be watching Ridly Greig from Ottawa closely. He will retain his Calder eligibility unless he plays all of Ottawa’s remaining games. I like its statistical versatility for banger formats.

Nick Alberga: Yes. With Pyotr Kochetkov as good as he is, I doubt the Canes will be in a rush to bring Raanta back. Easily deposit here.

Brock Seguin: Yes. You need to be aggressive with your roster moves at this point in the year. Don’t hang on to a guy who isn’t playing, you need to maximize your games played to give yourself the best chance of winning in the fantasy playoffs.

Matt Larkins: I would, especially if you’re in a playoff dogfight. With Frederik Andersen healthy and Pyotr Kochetkov outperforming them both this season, the Canes have little reason to rush Antti Raanta. They can give him as much healing time as he needs. From what I understand, he’s back on the ice this week, but the Canes haven’t hinted he’s set to return.

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