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Fantasy Summary

He is not rosterable in any format that doesn’t count PIMs and hits.


Observations

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September 2020 – The 6-5, 235-pound behemoth made great strides in his fourth pro campaign. Playing all his games in the NHL for the second straight season, the 26-year-old had modest totals of three goals and four points but his big-league 32 appearances, 93 hits and 78 PIMs were career highs. He offers a physical presence without dramatic defensive shortcomings. With two more schedules on his contract at an affordable $1-million AAV, Johnston could replace 31-year-old UFA Matt Martin on the team’s vaunted “fourth line.” Mark Allan

September 2020 – The physical winger registered two hits and a 10-minute misconduct in the series-opening debacle in which the weary Islanders were embarrassed 8-2 by the Lightning. Johnston managed to have a break-even plus/minus, helped by only 8:34 on the ice and the fact Tampa struck for four PP scores. He sat out a bitterly disappointing 2-1 loss as Andrew Ladd had his first post-season appearance since 2016. Mark Allan

September 2020 – Johnston had a relatively quiet outing in a Game Two 4-3 OT loss. He had just 13 shifts and 9:17 of ice time, tied with Matt Martin for the team low. Johnston’s four hits were only one below Martin’s team-leading five, but well short of Johnston’s game-high 10 in the 4-0 series-opening NYI win. The most notable moment for the physical winger was when he was flattened by a high, hard hit by Matt Niskanen. Barry Trotz sat Johnston for a 3-1 victory that gave the Isles a 2-1 series lead, indicating he inserted Derick Brassard to get a different skill set. Johnston is not listed as injured, but the reality is that he has not made the grade to full-time starter. Mark Allan

August 2020 – He didn’t get an assist on the Islanders’ second goal in a 4-0 victory over the Flyers, but Johnston’s behind-the-net forecheck was crucial to the score. Johnston had a game-high 10 hits in a team-low 11:13 on the ice as the Isles outhit Philly 34-29. The 6-3, 235-pound winger has fully made the transition from bottom-six brute to a human torpedo who’s faster and more agile than you’d expect. While his fantasy value remains selectively low, expect him to continue between J.G. Pageau and Leo Komarov. Mark Allan

August 2020 – Johnston got 17 short shifts totaling 10:02 in a series-clinching 4-0 triumph over Washington. In his first appearance in the 2020 post-season, the imposing LW registered a shot on goal, a blocked shot and, most importantly, four hits. The team-first Isles outhit the dispirited Capitals 46-34. You’d never take Johnston in any pool that didn’t count PIMs and hits, but he’s got two more seasons at an affordable $1 million AAV and is gaining the confidence of coaches. Mark Allan

August 2020 – Barry Trotz didn’t insert the 6-5, 235-pounder into the first three outings against the Capitals, and one-man Brute Squad Tom Wilson, and the Isles rolled up a commanding 3-0 lead in the series. It’s unlikely Johnston will see action barring a spate of injuries or a series so physical Trotz feels his physical, veteran roster needs some extra beef. Mark Allan

July 30 – While it’s a small (9:26 TOI) sample size, Johnston’s turn on the left side of J.P. Pageau and Derick Brassard in a 2-1 exhibition win over the Rangers might warrant a change of role for the hulking left winger. His third-line work produced an assist and a game-high seven hits. Faster than you’d expect and every bit as physical as you would anticipate, Johnson seems determined to be upgraded from enforcer to grinder. Johnston still merits lukewarm consideration only in pools that count hits and PIMs, but he might be evolving as a player. Mark Allan

July 2020 – The 6-5, 235-pound enforcer was one of 17 forwards named to the Islanders’ post-season roster as the team opted for size, physicality and NHL experience instead of youth and skill. Johnston’s odds of getting playing time are slim and his chances of registering points even slimmer. Mark Allan

July 2020 – Tough guy Johnston is in Group One at training camp with fellow LWs Anders Lee and Andrew Ladd. Group One blanked Group Two 2-0 in the first scrimmage of training camp. Mark Allan

March 2020 – Who says enforcers are a thing of the past in the NHL? The hulking Johnston has skated 32 times for the Islanders this season, with predictable results. Besides three goals and an assist in occasional fourth-line duty, the 6-5, 236-pound one-man Brute Squad has 78 PIMs and 93 hits in an average of 7:58 minutes on the ice. The 26-year-old has two more seasons at an AAV of $1 million, so it’s conceivable he might hang around the big time awhile longer. Choosing him for your fantasy roster? Inconceivable. Mark Allan

March 2019 – Johnston has spent more time in the press box this season than the ice, as he has been pushed out of fourth line duties by the return of Matt Martin. In 13 games, he is only averaging 7:55 of time on ice with one goal and three assists. There is a reason Johnston is significantly low-owned in fantasy leagues. There is no need to give him any consideration for the foreseeable future unless your league values hits and penalty minutes. However, he will need to find a place in the lineup before he can start putting up points in those categories. Nate Duffett

November 2017 – The Islanders signed Ross Johnston after his Charlottetown Islanders (QMJHL) season ended in 2015. Now in his third season with Bridgeport (AHL), Johnston is trying to carve out a niche that makes him more useful on an organizational depth chart. Johnston notched 15 points and 135 penalty minutes in 62 AHL games last season and is off to a decent start here in 2017-18. With seven points and 53 PIMs in 18 games, Johnston is trying to put his power-forward pants on as opposed to just being the team’s bouncer. As a 6-5, 225 pound left winger and a willing combatant, it can be tough to ignore the 23-year-old undrafted free agent. Michael Farkas

Attributes
Fantasy Upside 2.5
NHL Certainty 7.5
Country CAN
Position LW
Roster Type NHL
Shoot/Glove Left
Date of Birth February 18, 1994
Height 6‘5”
Weight 235 lbs
Drafted No

Stats

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2007-2008 Sherwood Falcons Bantam AAAPEI U1524 11 1021 50|Playoffs12 8 715 20 
 2008-2009 Sherwood Falcons Bantam AAAPEI U1528 12 1325 68|Playoffs8 4 26 10 
 2009-2010 Charlottetown Knights U18NBPEIMU18HL24 2 911 68|Playoffs4 0 00
 2010-2011 Charlottetown Knights U18NBPEIMU18HL34 20 3757 109|Playoffs5 5 38 20 
  Summerside Western CapitalsMJAHL2 2 13 4|        
  Charlottetown Knights U18Gatineau Kiwanis4 1 34 2|        
 2011-2012 Summerside Western CapitalsMJAHL23 12 1729 55|        
  Moncton WildcatsQMJHL38 2 57 55|Playoffs2 0 00
 2012-2013 Moncton WildcatsQMJHL53 12 1527 96|Playoffs3 0 00
 2013-2014 Victoriaville TigresQMJHL60 10 1525 139|Playoffs5 0 33
 2014-2015 Charlottetown IslandersQMJHL44 18 1432 124|Playoffs10 4 711 28 
  Bridgeport Sound TigersAHL2 0 00 0|        
 2015-2016 New York IslandersNHL1 0 00 4|        
  Bridgeport Sound TigersAHL39 1 34 79|        
  Kansas City MavericksECHL13 4 711 23|Playoffs5 3 14 10 
 2016-2017 Bridgeport Sound TigersAHL62 8 715 135|        
 2017-2018 New York IslandersNHL24 3 36 62|        
  Bridgeport Sound TigersAHL38 3 811 113|        
 2018-2019 New York IslandersNHL17 1 34 23|        
 2019-2020 New York IslandersNHL32 3 14 78|Playoffs5 0 00 12 
 2020-2021 New York IslandersNHL- - -- -|        

Highlights