Fantasy Hockey Center Rankings for 2015-16
We have already posted our Fantasy Hockey goaltender rankings and now it’s time to start with what may be the most important position outside of goaltender in the NHL, center. These rankings will be geared towards standard 5x5 leagues, so if you’re in a league that has a category like faceoff wins, that really won’t be reflected on this list. When it comes to drafting centers, while it’s certainly true that the first four players in your draft could be at this position, after that, it’s best to wait and load up on wings. Center is deep and you will be able to find one later in your draft. As always, check your league’s settings to see what position each player is listed at. A center on one site, might not be on another.
Here are our Top 50 centers entering training camp.
- Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins: Do I really need to explain why?
[caption id="attachment_97892" align="alignright" width="374"] Tyler Seguin has elevated his game with the Dallas Stars. Photo Credit: Sarah A.[/caption]
- Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning: Stamkos and ownership are still discussing a new contract but that shouldn’t keep you away from drafting him. The team would also like him to move to wing, whereas Stamkos wants to stay at center. Fantasy owners should prefer wing, where he wouldn’t have as many defensive responsibilities.
- John Tavares, New York Islanders: What kind of numbers would he put up if the Isles ever surrounded him with a top wing or two?
- Tyler Seguin, Dallas Stars: Announced himself as one of the best players in the game last season, and now Patrick Sharp may join his line along with Jamie Benn. The Bruins get just a little sick each time he scores a goal.
- Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins: Could be a bounce back season for Malkin now that he and several other wingers are healthy and Phil Kessel is on board. The power play just may be unstoppable.
- Claude Giroux, Philadelphia Flyers: We might still be waiting for that monster season; will this be the year?
- Ryan Getzlaf, Anaheim Ducks: One of the best two-way centers in the game; just stay healthy please.
- Jonathan Toews, Chicago Blackhawks: Many general managers would select Toews among the top two or three players overall if they were starting an NHL team.
- Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks: His value could change if his legal troubles were to go away.
- Joe Pavelski, San Jose Sharks: One of the best unknown players in the NHL.
- Logan Couture, San Jose Sharks: Couture is part of the next wave of offensive stars for the Sharks.
- Ryan Johansen, Columbus Blue Jackets: I can’t say enough about how much I like all of the off-season moves the Blue Jackets have made. They are going to score a ton of goals this season.
- Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles Kings: Should rebound this season with Marian Gaborik Milan Lucic on his line.
- Tyler Johnson, Tampa Bay Lightning: Was last year just a fluke or a sign of things to come.
- Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado Avalanche: I’ll chalk up last season to a sophomore slump. Would like to see him on a line with Matt Duchene, though.
- Taylor Hall, Edmonton Oilers: One of these years that Oilers top line will hit it big. Here’s to thinking the addition of McDavid will push them over the top.
- Filip Forsberg, Nashville Predators: To think the Capitals traded him for Martin Erat. Ouch.
- Nicklas Backstrom, Washington Capitals: Would be higher on this list if we knew for sure that he would be healthy in October.
- Henrik Zetterberg, Detroit Red Wings: Not too much talent is surrounding this aging star.
- Patrick Sharp, Dallas Stars: Sharp seemed to be in decline, perhaps playing on a line with Ja. Benn and Seguin will be a breath of fresh air for him.
- Eric Staal, Carolina Hurricanes: He may be ranked too low, but I just don’t see where he will get his help from.
- Conor McDavid, Edmonton Oilers: This year’s top overall pick is going to be a superstar, but probably not this season. Dynasty and Keeper leagues should have him ranked much higher.
- Jeff Carter, Los Angeles Kings: Would like him better if he played on the top line.
- Patrick Marleau, San Jose Sharks: You could do worse than selecting Marleau, he will score.
- Henrik Sedin, Vancouver Canucks: He just doesn’t score enough. There will be plenty of assists though.
- Matt Duchene, Colorado Avalanche: I’m expecting the entire team to rebound this year.
- Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins: The team is in a rebuilding year.
- Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings: Already hurt, may not be ready to start the season, and even if he is it will just be a matter of time until he gets hurt again. Love him, but he’s not an 80-game player anymore.
- David Backes, St. Louis Blues: A safe pick later in your draft.
- Joe Thornton, San Jose Sharks: Another pivot who passes too much.
- J. Oshie, Washington Capitals: Will probably be drafted sooner than he should because he will likely play on a line with Alexander Ovechkin.
- Jason Spezza, Dallas Stars: Would like him more if Sharp plays on the second line.
- Kyle Turris, Ottawa Senators:
- Sean Monahan, Calgary Flames:
- Derek Stepan, New York Rangers:
- Bryan Little, Winnipeg Jets: Another unknown player that can help you late.
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Edmonton Oilers: Just a matter of time until he loses the top center spot to McDavid.
- Tomas Plekanac, Montreal Canadiens:
- Evgeny Kuznetsov, Washington Capitals:
- Ryan O’Reilly, Buffalo Sabres: I’m sure Buffalo is thrilled that it took him all of two weeks to get a DWI after being acquired.
- Paul Stastny, St. Louis Blues: Had a tough first season in St. Louis but should be better this year, sleeper.
- Brandon Dubinsky, Columbus Blue Jackets.
- Ryan Strome, New York Islanders: His value increases dramatically should he end up on the top line with Tavares.
- David Krejci, Boston Bruins:
- Mike Ribeiro, Nashville Predators:
- Mikko Koivu, Minnesota Wild:
- Alex Galchenyuk, Montreal Canadiens:
- Craig Smith, Nashville Predators:
- Mikael Granlund, Minnesota Wild:
- Valtteri Filppula, Tampa Bay Lightning:
You can feel free to follow me on Twitter, @georgekurtz
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