Lead you to a Fantasy championship

It’s always difficult to trust a rookie when it comes to Fantasy sports. Some play well right away, while others can take years before the game slows down enough for their talent to show. In this column, we will take a look at nine rookies that are worthy of Fantasy consideration. The NHL has an award for the top rookie — the Calder Trophy — and while many of these names may be up for that prize also, we’re going to focus more on those first-year players that can help lead us to a Fantasy championship rather than the Stanley Cup.

Mathew Barzal, New York Islanders: Barzal looked lost in the few games he played for the Islanders last season. Well, what a difference a year makes. Barzal has all the confidence in the world now, and one could argue that not only does he look like the best player on the ice for the Islanders most games, he’s also the main reason the team is tied with Tampa Bay for the most goals in the NHL this season. Barzal can skate like the wind and has given the Islanders a legitimate scoring second line that opposing teams have to worry about.

Clayton Keller, Arizona Coyotes: The good news for Keller is that he already has 11 goals and is on pace to pot about 30 this season. The bad news is that he hasn’t scored since Nov. 6, which spans 14 games. He does have six assists during this span, but Fantasy owners need and want more. The Coyotes don’t have many offensive weapons, and one has to wonder if opposing teams have just decided to take Keller out of the equation with their top pair of defenders and force someone else on Arizona to beat them.

Brock Boeser, Vancouver Canucks: Can Boeser really score 40 goals this season? That’s the pace he’s on, but he won’t reach it; not with a 19.7 shooting percentage. That number will certainly come down, maybe even cut in half. So, Boeser will either have to shoot more often or risk ending up with 25-30 goals. That’s still not a bad total for Fantasy owners.