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2 years agoWith the 21st pick in the 2018 NHL draft, the San Jose Sharks selected Canadian native Ryan Merkley. This 17-year-old defender has extraordinary puck play and is a power-play specialist. He put up 100 points in his last two OHL seasons but comes with an attitude issue. This is no worry to San Jose, as they "are looking for difference makers." If he can make significant improvements, he should eventually find his way onto the Sharks roster.--Anthony VattimoSource: Fear the Fin
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2 years agoWith the 13th pick in the NHL draft, the Dallas Stars selected center Ty Dellandrea. The Canadian native is only 17 years old but scored 59 points (27 goals, 32 assists) in 67 games for the Flint Firebirds, a team who struggled this past season. With a new coach coming in for the Dallas Stars, we can expect to see Dellandrea -- an aggressive scorer and playmaker -- in a season or two.--Anthony VattimoSource: SB Nation
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2 years agoThe New York Rangers selected Russian native right winger Vitali Kravtsov as the ninth overall pick. The 18-year-old is a towering 6-foot-4 lefty shooter who has a lot of hockey sense and skill. He played in the Kontinental Hockey League during his last two seasons and found some success. Kravtsov is a season or two away from playing in the NHL, as he is still under contract in the KHL. Look for him to make an impact for the Rangers in future seasons.--Anthony VattimoSource: The Hockey Writers
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2 years agoNew York Islanders forward Mathew Barzal captured the Calder Trophy as the NHL's top rookie on Wednesday night. Barzal ran away with the trophy this year, leading all first-year players with 85 points (22 goals, 63 assists) while separating himself from the rest of the pack by more than 20 points. Taken with the 16th overall pick in the 2015 draft, Barzal has emerged as one of the league's most dynamic skaters and possesses excellent skills with the puck. With the potential departure of the Islanders top center in John Tavares, Barzal could elevate to a top-line role next season. As a result, the young center could be a candidate to build off such a remarkable season in 2018-2019 and should climb in upcoming fantasy drafts.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoNew Jersey Devils winger Taylor Hall became the first player in his team's franchise history to win the Hart Trophy as the league's most valuable player on Wednesday. Hall narrowly edged out Nathan MacKinnon for the trophy, earning 164 first-place votes and 1,264 total voting points. Hall, who finished the year with 93 points (39 goals and 54 assists), helped lead a young Devils team to the playoffs for the first time since the 2011-2012 season. From a fantasy perspective, Hall was easily one of last season's best draft bargains, having been taken at 92nd overall, on average, in drafts. Hall will surely be taken at a premium price this time around as the former 2010 first overall pick will look to replicate such an individually successful season.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoTampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman took home his first Norris trophy, awarded to the league's top blue liner, at the NHL Awards on Wednesday. Hedman posted 63 points (17 goals and 46 assists), a plus-32 rating, 26 power-play points and 216 shots on goal last season, helping lead his team on a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals. At 27 years old, the Swedish-born defenseman has certainly emerged as a top-flight fantasy player over the years and should be a lock to be a top-25 overall draft pick next season.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoLos Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar has won the Selke Trophy, which represents the best defensive forward, for the second time in the past three seasons. He led all NHL forwards in total ice time, average ice time per game (22:05), and short-handed ice time (2:10 per game). He took third in the NHL for total face-offs (1,816) and face-off wins (983), setting career highs in both categories. Kopitar posted 92 points (35 goals, 57 assists) and ended the seasons at plus-21. He had a breakout year, putting up his best numbers yet. Look for more exciting things to come from Kopitar in the upcoming season.--Anthony VattimoSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoDaniel and Henrik Sedin were awarded the King Clancy Trophy, an award that exemplifies leadership on and off the ice. These co-captains retired after 17 seasons with the Vancouver Canucks and did nothing but great things for the organization. They donated $1.5 million to the BC Children's Hospital Foundation in 2010 and have helped Canucks for Kids raise $42 million since 2000. They shared the game of hockey with thousands of children and have been fantastic role models for over a decade. This hockey duo will not be forgotten.--Anthony VattimoSource: NHL
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2 years agoThe Ottawa Senators made a big trade, acquiring Mikkel Boedker, Julius Bergman and a sixth-round draft pick in 2020 for Mike Hoffman, Cody Donaghey and a fifth-round draft pick in 2020. Boedker had high praise for when he was with the Arizona Coyotes and his short tenure with the Colorado Avalanche as a top-six forward in the NHL. However, he has lost value with two very disappointing seasons on the San Jose Sharks. With the Sharks, he only put up 63 points in 155 games, leaving his $4 million salary as a burden to the team. With the Senators lack of forward depth, he could very well get a chance to play in the top six with forwards such as Matt Duchene and Mark Stone. However, he will have to prove his value on the Senators and should not be picked in redraft formats.--Caden Inaba - RotoBallerSource: Ottawa Senators on Twitter
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2 years agoFormer Ottawa Senator winger Mike Hoffman, who was traded from Ottawa to San Jose early Tuesday morning, has now been flipped just three hours later to Florida (along with a 2018 seventh-round pick) in exchange for a fourth and fifth-round draft pick in the 2018 draft and a 2019 second-round pick. Hoffman's name has been circulating media outlets over the past few weeks due to Melinda Karlsson, Erik Karlsson's wife, filing for an order of protection against the winger's longtime girlfriend. Hoffman, who posted 56 points in 82 games with the Senators last season, could be a nice fit playing alongside one of the Panther's top two centers in Aleksander Barkov or Vincent Trocheck in 2018-2019.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoFormer Ottawa Senators winger Mike Hoffman was dealt to the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday morning. In addition to Hoffman, the Senators sent prospect Cody Donaghey and a 2020 fifth-round pick in exchange for Mikkel Boedkker, Julius Bergman and a 2020 sixth-round pick. Hoffman has proven to be one the more consistent goal scorers in the game today, posting at least 20 goals or more in each of his first four NHL seasons. Despite playing on one of the league's worst teams last season, Hoffman registered 22 goals, 34 assists, 21 powerplay points and 257 shots on goal. Joining a forward corps in San Jose that includes Joe Pavelski, Joe Thornton, Evander Kane and Logan Couture, Hoffman might very well surpass last season's point totals in 2018-2019.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: Sportsnet
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2 years agoToronto Maple Leafs prospect Andreas Johnsson grabbed AHL Playoff MVP honors, as the Toronto Marlies captured the AHL's Calder Cup on Thursday night. Johnsson, who played nine regular season and six playoff games with the Leafs this season, was outstanding for the team's AHL affiliate throughout the team's quest to the championship. Johnsson posted an impressive 24 points (10 goals and 14 assists) in 16 playoff games. Selected in the seventh round of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, Johnsson is looking like he could be a significant draft bargain for the Leafs organization. Expected to make the full-time jump to the NHL next season, the 23-year-old could soon become quite relevant in dynasty or deep redraft leagues in 2018-2019.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: Toronto Star
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2 years agoChicago Blackhawks right-winger John Hayden reached a two-year agreement to stick around in Chicago on Friday. Hayden bounced back in forth between the Blackhawks and the team's AHL affiliate in Rockford, showcasing his high energy style of play and his penchant to occasionally find the scoresheet. In his 47 games as a rookie in Chicago, the former Yale University product posted four goals and nine assists to go along with 54 penalty minutes. Hayden will look to not only make the team out of training camp next season, but to also gain more trust with the coaching staff and increase his time-on-ice.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoChicago Blackhawks forward Vinnie Hinostroza agreed to a two-year contract in order to stick with his hometown team on Friday. After being selected in the sixth round of the 2011 NHL draft, Hinostroza has demonstrated that he has the skill to play at the NHL level. Over the past two seasons, the 24-year-old has registered 13 goals and 26 assists in 99 games in a Hawks uniform. Hinostroza will aim to stick with the big club on a permanent basis next season.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com
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2 years agoFormer Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Peter Budaj was traded to the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for Andy Andreoff on Wednesday. This will mark Budaj's second stint in LA, as the netminder played 54 games for the Kings from 2015-2017. Budaj missed significant time due to an ankle injury last season, appearing in just eight NHL games for the Lightning while posting three wins, a 3.76 goals-against average and an .876 save percentage. The former second-round pick in the 2001 draft will likely compete for the King's backup goaltender role with Jack Campbell.--Chase Davis - RotoBallerSource: NHL.com

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