Fantasy Hockey

Robinson's Fantasy Rundown: 2022-23 Breakout candidates on the blue line

Last week we broke out the crystal ball and tried to project a handful of potential breakout candidates for the 2022-23 campaign. As discussed in that piece, there are three things that I look for when assessing the likelihood of a sizeable pop in production.

  1. Opportunity: Will there be more offensive minutes, better linemates, and increased roles for this player?
  2. Readiness: Is the player ready to take on those minutes, and find the success needed to hold that spot? In that case, experience is usually the best indicator, but not always a necessity. We’re seeing younger and younger players find instant success in the greatest league in the world… so long as they have that crucial first point locked down.
  3. Quality of team: You almost always need to be surrounded by skillful players for your numbers to pop. Sure, there are some stars on an island that can make it happen, but those players are well-established and you’re not likely to extract surplus value landing them at the draft or via trade. There are fewer offensive spots to go around on the blue line. In most cases, it’s just the one top power play spot, and then two on the second unit. If you’re on that second unit, you hope it’s on a team that prefers a 60/40 split rather than an 80/20 like some of the big boy squads. We want to see a high percentage of offensive zone starts and a healthy dose of man-advantage time to even consider a breakout possibility. With that in mind, here are a few candidates, as well as a few more who will take a step forward next season but are not quite ready to go off.

Now that we've established our indicators for future success, let's look at some of the players who qualify.

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Fantasy Hockey Anaheim Ducks Buffalo Sabres Colorado Avalanche Dallas Stars Edmonton Oilers Minnesota Wild AHL NHL Calen Addison Evan Bouchard Bowen Byram Rasmus Dahlin Jamie Drysdale Miro Heiskanen
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