October Fantasy Hockey Rankings continue with Left Wings.
1. Alexander Ovechkin,
2. Daniel Sedin,
3. Taylor Hall...! (just kidding)
See below for complete rankings.
Left Wing Rankings -->> Top 30
Note: Left Wings are ranked for their expected performance from this point to the end of the 2011-2012 season using standard scoring leagues categories: Goals, Assists, Power Play Points, Shots on Goal, Plus/Minus, Penalty Minutes, and Average Time on Ice. Last year's final ranking, based on actual end-of-year performance data, is indicated in parentheses.
1. Alex Ovechkin, LW, Washington Capitals (2): You've seen the pictures of Fat Ovi. He enjoys the off-season. No worries. Had an off-year last season and still finished 2nd at his position. Washington is going to re-open their attack, Green is back, Brouwer was added. AO is the way to go.
2. Daniel Sedin, LW, Vancouver Canucks (1): Huge goal and STG production. Safe and solid pick. Will be motivated after being so close to finally winning a Cup.
3. Zach Parise, LW, New Jersey Devils (104): Played only 13 games last season. Knee is full-go. Starts the year with Elias as his centre.
4. Ilya Kovalchuk, LW, New Jersey Devils (26): Lethal scorer. Loves to shoot. Was Mr. Clutch last season. Loss of Zajac hurts the Devils in the early going, but Kovy will still get his.
5. Rick Nash, LW/RW, Columbus Blue Jackets (15): Finally! A true 1st line centre in Jeff Carter to work with Nash.
6. Bobby Ryan, LW, Anaheim Ducks (7): Multi-cat power forward can do it all. Slightly disappointing season last year, so look for a bit of improvement on what was nevertheless Top 10 production.
7. Patrick Sharp, LW/C, Chicago Blackhawks (8): Hossa on his line affords Sharp more freedom to create and shoot. Sounds like he'll be ready to go for the opener.
8. Alexander Semin, LW, Washington Capitals (10): Sniper. If he can stay healthy, he'll finish even higher.
9. Henrik Zetterberg, LW/C, Detroit Red Wings (4): Could score more if did not have substantial defensive responsibilities. Shoots a lot.
10. Taylor Hall, LW, Edmonton Oilers (48): Breakout! Missed nearly 20 games last season and still scored 22 goals. 30+ this season along with 250+ SOG.
11. Milan Lucic, LW, Boston Bruins (5): Power forward extraordinaire. Just don't expect him to shoot over 17% again this season.
12. Ryan Kesler, LW, Vancouver Canucks (3): Hip surgery increases risk and uncertainty so lowers his ranking. If he can come back 100% he can move up. (I know he's a C, not a LW -- but he's listed as LW, so take advantage).
13. Thomas Vanek, LW, Buffalo Sabres (11): Goal-scorer extraordinaire who seems even streakier than most. Will carry less of the load in Buffalo this year.
14. Michael Cammalleri, LW, Montreal Canadiens (24): Missed 15 games last season. Nice SOG totals. Look for him to move back up the LW rankings in 2011.
15. James Neal, LW, Pittsburgh Penguins (22): Starts the season on Malkin's wing and Pittsburgh's #1 line.
16. Brenden Morrow, LW, Dallas Stars (16): Power forward will score, rough up the opposition, and frequent the sin bin.
17. Patrick Marleau, LW, San Jose Sharks (9): Slated to play on a line with Thornton and Pavelski. Can fill the net, and likes to shoot which also helps.
18. Patrik Elias, LW/C, New Jersey Devils (20): Looks like he'll center Parise's line. Consistent contributor will be given prime opportunities. Sign me up.
19. James van Reimsdyk, LW, Philadelphia Flyers (45): After prolific playoff, and Richards and Carter were dealt away, JvR finds himself elevated to the #1 line playing with Giroux.
20. Jamie Benn, LW, Dallas Stars (32): Dallas fans absolutely love this guy. With Richards gone, more opportunites will fall to Benn. He's quite capable.
21. Evander Kane, LW, Winnipeg Jets (42): Steadily improving. 43 points last year. Look for 55+ this year and some PIMs too. If his linemates were better (or his team, overall) he would be more attractive.
22. Ryane Clowe, LW, San Jose Sharks (12): Averaging nearly 60 points and over 100 PIMs the past two season, Clowe is one of the top power forwards at the LW position.
23. Brandon Dubinsky, LW, New York Rangers (16): Hard-working with above average skill. Will benefit from the defensive attention that the Brad Richards line will draw although may see fewer opportunities than last season.
24. Andrew Ladd, LW, Winnipeg Jets (21): Weak second half is somewhat of a concern, but Winnipeg's Captain will look to impress and has the talent to do so.
25. Chris Kunitz, LW, Pittsburgh Penguins (19): Piled up the points last year during Crosby's streak, but will start the year on a line with Staal and Kennedy. That, plus durability concerns has the Kunikazee down a few notches.
26. Max Pacioretty, LW, Montreal Canadiens (71): 14 goals (fully 1/2 on the PP) in just 37 games before the Chara trainwreck into the stanchion ended his season. Re-injury risk or he could be higher.
27. Ryan Malone, LW, Tampa Bay Lightning (46): Only played 54 games last season. Bugsy is reportedly as healthy as he's been in several years and will line up with Vinny Lecavalier to start the season.
28. Scott Hartnell, LW, Philadelphia Flyers (14): Retained his Top 6 position on the Flyers. Good source for PIMs, too.
29. Antoine Vermette, LW, Columbus Blue Jackets (31): CLS upgraded their forward corps, and Vermette is firmly entrenched at 2C. That bodes well for his point production.
30. David Booth, LW, Florida Panthers (62): Florida added depth throughout their Top 9 Forward corps, and Booth is now an extra year removed from the crushing Richards check. And he gets boatloads of SOGs.
On the Bubble: Ville Leino, Dustin Penner, Clarke MacArthur, Tuomo Ruutu, and Simon Gagne.
**Re: position designations...If a player is listed with dual eligibility of W/C, he will be ranked among the wings.
If he is listed as a LW/RW he will be ranked at the position where he sees/has seen the most ice time.