With so much great hockey happening lately it has been close to impossible to keep up and bring everything you need to know for your fantasy hockey prospect updates. The NHL is gearing up for another Cup Final, the AHL is having a great playoff again, the CHL is all complete and now it is the Memorial Cup and internationally the U18 are in the books and now the World Championship are in full swing.
So, where to begin?
In the true sense of Rambling this weeks edition from yours truly will be will be all over the map.
So lets begin at the World Championshipand some draft eligible prospects in the spotlight. The Kappo Kakko vs Jack Hughes battle for the number one overall ranking is very interesting. From the start of the season it was Jack Hughes by a mile, and while he has not played his way out of that position, Kappo Kakko has really brought his game to the same level. Kakko has been solid all season long playing for TPS in the Liiga, has dominated internationally with Finland at the WJC and is outplaying Jack Hughes at the World Championship, a tournament comprised of several NHL star players. So does this put Kakko ahead of Hughes? Maybe, maybe not. It all depends on the context. In terms of real hockey and NHL value, I think Hughes has more upside offensively, will sell more jerseys and tickets and is a center. Kakko is more NHL ready now, is physically bigger, and has no holes in his game or red flags. No bad choice either way if you ask me. In terms of fantasy, there are two underlying factors here. One; Hughes has more offensive upside. Two; Kakko could have a bigger short-term impact. Now if you ask me who I rank higher? My answer is it depends on the context. Fantasy vs NHL and if it is fantasy, what are your league settings (scoring categories, keeper rules etc). For me personally I believe I would pick the player I think has the higher offensive upside, and I believe that to be Hughes.
Also in the WJC, draft eligible Moritz Seider first made some noise during the WJC where he lead Germany back into the main pool with the big boys, and is following that international performance up with some more strong play at the WC. Seider is playing top minutes in the DEL (Top German league), which is impressive for an 18-year-old. His play has improved significantly in the past two years and he has drawn comparisons to Sharks Marc-Edouard Vlasic for his solid two-way play. He may be an underrated player heading into the draft and may have some untapped offensive potential. He carries a little extra value in Roto leagues as the 6-4 German can play a physical game as well. Don’t expect Seider to play in the NHL next year, but the Owen Sound Attack owns his CHL rights, and he would have AHL eligibility as well. Moving to North America may be a good move for his development
Outside of draft eligible players at the WC (Which are rare) some noteable prospect performancs are coming from