Mock Draft Analysis: Part 5

09/11/2010 12:46 AM -  Steven Ives

After being a first-round pick in many fantasy drafts last season, Ryan Getzlaf could be a sneaky pick this season.

This article will be divided into six parts. In each part, I will provide my analysis of two teams that participated in the 12-team fantasyhockey.com Mock Draft that was completed recently. For full mock draft rankings, be sure to purchase a copy of the 2010-11 fantasyhockey.com Draft Guide.

For Part 5, I will critique teams picked by fantasyhockey.com regular Dan Offerdahl and former fantasyhockey.com intern Steven Bigg.

DAN’S TEAM:

C: Nicklas Backstrom (1)
C: Joe Thornton (2)
LW: TJ Oshie (8)
LW: James Neal (9)
RW: Jiri Hudler (6)
RW: Chris Stewart (7)
D: Chris Pronger (3)
D: John-Michael Liles (14)
D: Jason Demers (15)
D: Ryan Suter (16)
G: Niklas Backstrom (4)
G: Jaroslav Halak (5)
BN: James van Riemsdyk (10)
BN: Matt Duchene (11)
BN: Jonathan Bernier (12)
BN: Tim Connolly (13) 

WHAT WENT RIGHT: One of the most unheralded picks in the league was Chris Stewart in the 7th round. This rising star has 40-goal 80-point potential this year, with 100 PiM potential to boot. He started last season getting minimal ice time, but quickly earned a position on the top line in Colorado with another rising star Matt Duchene and tore up the NHL the second half of the year. Which brings us to Dan’s shrewd 11th round pick, Matt Duchene. This kid is an unbelievable talent, on par with John Tavares in every way, and far more talented than Taylor Hall who was drafted five rounds prior. He is (along with Tavares) the top candiate in the NHL for a breakthrough year, and I would not be surprised if he amasses 90 points this year and makes Dan’s second round pick Joe Thornton expendable. Jason Demers was a great flier to take in the 15th — if San Jose doesn’t deal for another offensive D-man, he will get a ton of time on the power play and could get near 50 points with a fine +/- rating. One of the top sleepers on the blueline. Dan wasn’t done there taking two more great sleepers in Van Riemsdyk (10th), a John Leclair clone with better skating who should top 30 goals and 60 points with a season under his belt, and Jonathan Bernier (12th), by far the top goaltending prospect in the NHL and possible trade bait to a one of the many teams (Philly? Tampa?), which would kill to build a team around him.

WHAT WENT WRONG: Taking Backstrom in the 1st round was a great pick, but at a position as deep as center taking two of them in the first two rounds is dangerous. Why take Thornton instead of another needed (and thinner) position there when Dan could have had equivalent talents in Mike Richards (3rd), Eric Staal (4th), Ryan Getzlaf (5th) — or, in my estimation, a farsuperior talent in Pavel Datsyuk (4th)? Hudler in the 6th was a HUGE reach. Why not wait unti the 12th round and take… Hudler? No doubt he would have been available at least into the 10th round. Lastly, while Nicklas Backstrom was a great pick at center in the 1st, Niklas Backstrom at goalie was a reach in the fourth. Minnesota may have more problems scoring than any team in the league aside from Florida, and 30 wins is a stretch of the imagination even if Backstrom starts 70 games. In the fourth round, a 25 win goaltender, even with a solid GAA and SV%, sounds like a stretch.

STEVEN BIGG’S TEAM

C: Anze Kopitar (2)
C: Ryan Getzlaf (5)
LW: Daniel Sedin (1)
LW: Patrick Sharp (7)
RW: Jarome Iginla (3)
RW: Dustin Penner (12)
D: Nicklas Lidstrom (6)
D: Christian Ehrhoff (8)
D: Alexander Edler (11)
D: Kimmo Timonen (14)
G: Miikka Kiprusoff (4)
G: Steve Mason (9)
BN: Tomas Plekanec (10)
BN: Antti Niemi (13)
BN: Ryan Smyth (15)
BN: Shane Doan (16) 

WHAT WENT RIGHT: Daniel Sedin fourth overall is a gutsy pick but I liked it. 45 goals, 95 points, and a +30 is reasonable on a stacked Canucks team that has the best 1-2 center punch (Henrik, Kesler) in the NHL this side of Pittsburgh and the sorely underrated Alex Burrows doing all the dirty work on Daniel’s other wing. Getzlaf in the 5th round was an absolute steal — no reason he can’t bounce back into the 90 point range while approaching 100 PiM. I had Getzlaf ranked ahead of several Cs drafted ahead of him, notably Thornton (2), Jeff Carter (3) and Paul Stastny (4). Sharp (7) was a great pick — I expect him to play a lot with Hossa, though I expect Troy Brouwer to play on the top line with Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. On the power play, however, Sharp is on the top unit, making 70 points - not an unreasonable expectation. Lidstrom will no longer score 70+ points, but in the 6th round he’s a steal and Ehrhoff in the 8th was a fantastic value pick. Niemi (13) may well turn out to be the best steal-pick in the entire draft, as he is now with the Sharks but was without a team at the time of the draft.

WHAT WENT WRONG: Mr. Bigg is clearly a Calgary fan, and may have, as a result, reached a bit for Iginla (3) and Kiprusoff (4). Iginla is still a nice lock for 35 goals and 70 points, but he no longer gets PiM and still lacks a #1 center to feed him the puck, although he does add a great deal of character to Mr.Bigg’s fantasy team’s locker room. Kipper is solid in net, but I don’t think he’s the elite fantasy option he once was now that Calgary is a playoff bubble team, and with Mason as his #2 netminder, Steve will need Niemi to emerge as a starter in order to compete with many teams in our league that are quite strong between the pipes. I would not be surprised if this squad competed for our league title, as Steve did an excellent job drafting.

Do you have a question about your fantasy hockey team? Email Ian at ian@fantasyhockey.com, and he’ll add it to the Fantasy Mailbag. Or follow fantasyhockey.com on Twitter for up-to-the-minute updates, general hockey discussion, and any fantasy hockey questions that you have. You can also become a fan on Facebook.


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