Complete 2015 Projections

Position: All | All Skaters | C | LW | RW | D | G
     
PROJECTED 2015 SEASON STATS
1. Sidney Crosby, Pit CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics80366810418463821:58259167.1
2015 Projections81426310524383821:32271160.8
2015 Outlook: The captain of the Penguins is the best hockey player in the world, and the top fantasy asset available. What's more, he's feeling great following offseason wrist issues. If you hold the first overall draft selection, you're picking Crosby. - VM
2. Steven Stamkos, TB CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics372515409181320:1512478.9
2015 Projections8247368312423521:45315136.2
2015 Outlook: Second only to Sidney Crosby in our estimation of fantasy value, the elite sniper might be without equal in his ability to rifle the puck in the net. After wetting his rookie feet in 2008-2009, Stamkos has surfed well above the point-per-game mark, while averaging 0.63 goals per regular season contest. Moreover, his full recovery from a broken tibia suffered this past November is progressing well. In early September, Stamkos told his club's website the right leg feels much stronger. "It's amazing week after week how much better it feels and how much closer it's getting to where it was before. I'm excited about that." Us too. VM
3. John Tavares, NYI CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics59244266-6402521:1518899.7
2015 Projections823651875452820:43278126
2015 Outlook: A season-ending knee injury at the Olympics aside, Tavares really stepped into his own in 2013-14. He was averaging better than a point per game when his season ended, with 66 points in 59 games. He was on pace for numbers that truly had him among the top five fantasy players. So that's where he now belongs. Tavares has built chemistry with Kyle Okposo, and the duo will be joined by a yet-to-be-determined winger on the other side. Regardless of how his line is built, Tavares has developed into a true star whose skill is reflected in his fantasy production. Owners should not hesitate to anchor their squad on Tavares' star power. - SA
4. Claude Giroux, Phi CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics822858867463720:26223147.2
2015 Projections812760878413220:35229126.6
2015 Outlook: Though he started slow -- very slow -- last season, Giroux had doubters eating crow by the end of the campaign. After notching a mere six points and a minus-7 rating through 11 October games, Giroux exploded to finish with 86 points in 82 games by the end of the season. He is the elite of the elite playmakers in the NHL and is a fantasy first-rounder. While Giroux lost his wingman with the trade of Scott Hartnell to the Columbus Blue Jackets, life will go on. The Flyers have plenty of candidates to replace Hartnell, including players who have a similar skill set to the power forward. Look for the same fantasy anchor stats from Giroux this season, with maybe just the slightest of concerns for the Flyers' power play without Hartnell. But it's only the slightest of concerns. - SA
5. Nicklas Backstrom, Wsh CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics82186179-20544419:48196122.7
2015 Projections812458827403919:53203121
2015 Outlook: Alex Ovechkin's playmaking buddy isn't a top-five fantasy center -- that company is too elite -- but he's top 10 in leagues that put a premium on power-play production. No player logged more points with the man advantage last season; and you can rely on Backstrom for a hearty bounty of assists, year in and year out. As for last season's limp minus-20, hopefully new coach Barry Trotz helps guide Backstrom in re-fluffing that figure. - VM
6. Evgeni Malkin, Pit C, RWYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics6023497210623020:04191117.2
2015 Projections703147788512919:13283117.1
2015 Outlook: The 28-year-old's trophy case is already teeming with evidence of his on-ice accomplishments. We don't need to sell you on his talent or skill set; the superstar's durability is our only concern. But even though Malkin has played just one close-to-full regular-season slate since 2008-09, he remains a top-five fantasy selection overall. - VM
7. Henrik Zetterberg, Det C, LWYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics4516324819201720:3315180.8
2015 Projections8024547815492920:32237118.9
2015 Outlook: On a per-game basis this past season, Zetterberg was a fantasy stud. As scary as back problems can be, Zetterberg has said he feels great this offseason and is ready to come back strong. He missed almost half of 2013-14 with back issues that ultimately resulted in corrective surgery. When healthy, Hank is absolutely dominant for fantasy owners. His past two seasons, though shortened, have both finished with Zetterberg scoring at better than a point-per-game clip. What is even better for Zetterberg's prospects this season is the emergence of Gustav Nyquist. With a healthy Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen, Nyquist adds the necessary fourth body to give the Red Wings two legitimate scoring lines. However the lines are split up, it's a fair bet that Zetterberg will remain one of the best options in fantasy drafts. The high praise of his health this offseason helps give confidence to drafting him as a No. 1 fantasy forward. - SA
8. Ryan Getzlaf, Ana CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics7731568728312321:17204157.8
2015 Projections8030497922372520:44216123.2
2015 Outlook: Getzlaf approaching 90 points in 2013-14 wasn't a surprise by any means -- he scored 91 in 2008-09, after all -- but fantasy owners were rewarded with a Hart Trophy-nominated season after sticking with Getzlaf through some down seasons. The 31 goals would be the biggest surprise, but that can probably be attributed partially to the lack of another finishing option on the top line with Corey Perry. All those chances were being generated by the duo of Perry and Getzlaf, yet Dustin Penner -- the most frequent left winger on the line -- managed only 13 goals with the Ducks before his trade to the Capitals. If a budding new option for the line connects, Getzlaf's goal totals could dwindle, but that would be made up for with more assists. Forget about the 11-goal, 57-point Getzlaf of three seasons ago. This is an MVP centerman back at his peak and ready to lead your fantasy squad in all offensive departments. - SA
9. Tyler Seguin*, Dal C, RWYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics8037478416182519:21294140
2015 Projections8135458010202619:33301117.5
2015 Outlook: Given his own offense to lead, Seguin did exactly what most folks predicted last season: He became elite. Exploding for 84 points in 80 games, Seguin had great chemistry with Jamie Benn and was a fantasy star in almost every category. Any criticism of his maturity level seems to have disappeared following such a great debut with the Stars. Now, with an All-Star playmaker such as Jason Spezza set to join Seguin on the power play, one has to wonder if he will push the ceiling even higher this season. Certainly having a budding star in Valeri Nichushkin on the other wing can only help, as well. We think Seguin is a first-round fantasy pick this season and probably every season going forward while he is in his prime. - SA
10. Joe Pavelski, SJ C, LW, RWYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics8241387923323119:51225146.2
2015 Projections8235377217302319:30244114.5
2015 Outlook: Before you pencil in Pavelski for another 40-goal season, keep in mind the 30-year-old maintained the highest -- by a wide margin -- shooting percentage of players who registered more than 170 shots. To put Pavelski's 18.2 shooting percentage (on 227 shots) into perspective, the closest player to near that mark, Chris Kunitz of the Pittsburgh Penguins, enjoyed a 16.1 shooting percentage on 221 shots. We're talking about a difference of over two percentage points here. This suggests the Sharks forward relished an exceptional goal-scoring campaign in 2013-14, and is unlikely to repeat. Also, Pavelski has never reached the 40-goal mark before, in his eight-year career. So there's that too. VM
11. Jamie Benn, Dal LW, CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics8134457921641919:09279145.2
2015 Projections763034646542319:23262100.9
2015 Outlook: Benn loved having Tyler Seguin as a linemate. Only the Toronto Maple Leafs' and Boston Bruins' top trios generated more goals at even strength last season than the combination of Benn, Seguin and Valeri Nichushkin. And you can look at Nichushkin's final totals to realize that the Benn-Seguin combination is what really matters. Improvement from Nichushkin can only help, but it doesn't need to happen for Benn to repeat as a star fantasy forward. He should go in your draft as a top-tier No. 2 fantasy forward and would make a nice one-two punch with Seguin in fantasy if the opportunity presented itself.- SA
12. Anze Kopitar, LA CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics8229417034242320:53200137.8
2015 Projections7726386419182320:4123299.8
2015 Outlook: The number of elite seasons already turned in by Kopitar is quite incredible. Considering that he just turned 27 years old, he has to be considered one of the brightest young stars in the game. The consistency for fantasy owners still isn't there 100 percent, but Kopitar only had one "off" month all season in 2013-14, so he's getting close. He has the talent to be putting in more than 80 points per season, but it's hard to be disappointed with 70 points, an elite plus/minus and more than enough shots on goal. It will be interesting to see if Marian Gaborik can push Kopitar back into the stratosphere. The pair finished extremely strong this past regular season, and then dominated the playoffs together. - SA
13. David Backes, StL CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics74273057141191619:33165135.3
2015 Projections7726315715951819:3417596
2015 Outlook: A refreshing fruit salad of a player in the standard league fridge, Backes offers a little bit of everything, ranging from tart to sweet, to please your fantasy hockey palate. A respectable collection of points at even strength and with the man advantage, above-average PIM, healthy plus-minus, decent TOI average -- it's all in there. But, no one ingredient will blow you away (it's still only fruit salad). And that's OK. Look to draft Backes early in the third round in most conventional leagues. VM
14. Taylor Hall*, Edm LW, CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics75275380-15441720:01250109.4
2015 Projections74294978-7462119:55248104.1
2015 Outlook: Say what you want about the other young Oilers players taking a step back in 2013-14, but Hall is a steady rock star for fantasy owners. He proved that he not only has point-per-game ability in the NHL, but he proved he can do it with his teammates all on a downward spiral. To put things in perspective, the top producing line for the Oilers last season was Hall, Jordan Eberle and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. The second top producing trio? Well, that was Hall, Sam Gagner and David Perron. That's right, Hall was on the best and second-best line for his team. Fantasy owners should bank on continued elite scoring from Hall and be aware that he still hasn't peaked for value. With linemates back on track and an overall improved team defense, Hall could push into No. 2 fantasy forward territory this season; he's a lock as a No. 3 fantasy forward. - SA
15. Matt Duchene, Col CYEARGPGAPTS+/-PIMPPPATOISOGPTS
2014 Statistics712347708191718:30217111.6
2015 Projections7326416714252019:0123699.5
2015 Outlook: Technically speaking, Duchene hasn't posted a complete season that would put him as a No. 2 fantasy forward. However, let's not get too technical; this guy is amazing on the ice. Duchene can take over the game when he wants and is in an ideal situation to move into the elite tier of fantasy forwards. He'll pair, once again, with Ryan O'Reilly on a line that will feature a new member for the departed P.A. Parenteau. Because either player can play center, the new linemate could easily be a winger, such as, oh, let's say, legendary scorer Jarome Iginla. But even if Iginla is moved elsewhere, some of the other potential linemates include veteran playmaker Alex Tanguay or power forward Jamie McGinn. The upside of an improved power play helping to fuel Duchene's production makes him even more exciting. He'll be worth the use of a third-round draft choice.- SA