Friday, September 20, 2013
Rich Dillon continues his series focused on each organization’s noteworthy prospects.
It’s time to get back to the NYNTK series, and today’s focus is on the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Marco Dano – With possibly the highest ceiling of any Jacket prospect, Dano is the prototypical high-risk, high-reward fantasy prospect. He is highly skilled but I question how well his game will translate to the pro level. Dano has a small frame and plays smaller. He had a great WJC, posting nine points in six games, so the ability is certainly there. My advice is to nab him if you have a deep keeper list and can get him without using a high pick.
Alex Wennberg – A quick, elusive skater, Wennberg looks like he will be a productive fantasy player. He is heady and sees the ice very well, and is an excellent playmaker. Wennberg looks like he could be a 60-point center in his prime.
Ryan Murray – Murray, Columbus’ 1st-round pick in 2012, had a rough season last year but is still a top prospect. Murray is a smooth skater, sharp passer with good offensive instincts. He will likely crack the NHL roster and may be a 35-40 point player down the road.
Boone Jenner – Jenner is generally underrated in the fantasy world, but he’s looking a lot more like a top six forward than his projected third-line center role. The two-way pivot has good size and skating ability, and no real weakness to his game really. His offensive game is coming on. Keep a close eye on him this year to see if his offense continues to progress.
Jonathan Audy-Marchessault – All the 5’9 winger does is produce, despite seemingly everyone wanting to write him off because of his size. He’s put up 64 and 67 point seasons his first two AHL seasons, following a 95 point effort in his final junior season. The offensively-challenged Blue Jackets appear to be willing to give Audy-Marchessault a shot and he could surprise.
Mike Reilly – The 20-year-old defenseman is a current Minnesota Golden Gopher and also played for the U.S. in the WJC. Reilly is a fantastic skater with elite acceleration and speed and is very good at using that speed to create offense. He will need to bulk up and improve his defensive reads to play in the NHL, but should accumulate points if he does.
Josh Anderson – A 4th-round pick (95th overall) in 2012, Anderson has been over-shadowed by more well-known teammates in London, but don’t sleep on him. He works and competes very hard, and his skills have been slowly improving. Watch him this year to see how he performs with an increased role.
Kerby Rychel – Will he be a grinder or scorer in the NHL? I say the answer is yes. Both. He has scored 40 goals twice in juniors, so his hands can do more than punch. Rychel reminds me a bit of Dustin Brown and I expect that type of career. Will have value in all formats, but obviously more in those that count hits and penalty minutes.
Oscar Dansk – He’s the future starter on an up and coming team. Dansk is a sound technical tender even if his junior numbers don’t reflect it. He played on a bad defensive team and accounted himself well. You could do worse for goalie prospects.
Seth Ambroz – Ambroz is huge with a football player’s build, but yet is a decent skater. He uses his size willingly, creating space for linemates and creating havoc in front of the net. Ambroz plays solid defense, but I don’t see him being a scoring forward at the pro level.
As always, thanks for reading.