NHL Starting Goalies 2016-17 Fantasy Sleepers
It’s hockey season baby! Not sure about you, but it was, as usual, a very long off-season for me. I hardly participate in fantasy hockey. It interferes with my NHL handicapping skills; however, it’s always fun looking over underestimated goaltenders. After all, a lot of my hockey predictions start with the goaltenders along with the defense in front. Anyways, no more of my handicapping secrets, here are my NHL Starting Goalies 2016-17 Fantasy Sleepers.
Philadelphia Flyers Starting Goalies
Michal Neuvirth & Steve Mason of the Philadelphia Flyers. The Flyers goalies, Neuvirth and Mason, are severely underestimated as a pair in fake drafts. If you pick a “world class” goalie early and afterward have two late-round picks near one another, consider them as a couple and trust Mason skips back and/or Neuvirth extends his electrifying rejuvenated game.
Unfortunately for my Flyers, they are tied for the third-most consecutive back to back games in the NHL. Which proves my point on why these two goaltenders need to be considered. Philly will alternate goalies as they did last year. Neuvirth had a .924 SV% along with 3 shutouts in the regular season. Even more stellar, a .981 (one SO) in three playoff games.
Buffalo Sabres Starting Goalie
Robin Lehner, injuries restricted him to a mere 21 games last season. He ended up with a lower leg injury and is not taking part in the World Cup of Hockey 2016 for Team Sweden. He had a legit .924 save percentage last season. The Sabres seem to be on the right track rebuilding their team, and Lehner is in, my opinion, a top 15 goaltender. Keep an eye on Lehner as I expect him to not get drafted. He will be a great pick up in the right spots.
Tampa Bay Lightning Back-up Goalie
Andrei Vasilevskiy. The Lightning are prone to keep Vasilevskiy and Ben Bishop (who’s entering the last year of his contract). Which to me screams “Vasilevskiy should be between the pipes for 30 games this season. Ben Bishop has missed time in each of the previous two playoffs due to injuries.
Not many hockey fans noticed, but Vasilevskiy has a .920 playoff save percentage in 12 games.
There’s an NHL development draft approaching, so expect to see the Lightning trading Bishop sooner or later. Yes, I just said that about my American-born goaltender. Vasilevskiy is a starting netminder in the NHL, and he will be the goaltending future in Tampa Bay.
Keep your eye on Vas, he may not get drafted. However will be a great pick up as the season goes on. If you find the right time and play him in the right spot. Once you do that, roll with him. Give it a month to see how much playing time the Bolts give Vas.
Patrik Laine – Winnipeg Jets
A side note not goaltending related. Make sure you have Patrik Laine on your fantasy team before the draft ends. He’s going to be the next pure goal scorer. Standing 6’4″ 201 pounds. I give him 2-3 years rounding out to about 230 pounds and a full force for the Jets.
He will most likely NOT get drafted. However, stir up a little trash talk with your buddies by drafting the 18 year old. Just to prove them wrong when Laine scores 20 goals this upcoming season 😉
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