When it comes to drafting a fantasy hockey team, there is no greater joy than the moment you call a name and hear 3 other GM's groan, "I forgot about that guy!". These players will be overlooked by your average GM for a plethora of reasons. Mostly, because they're not as smart as you. Some of these guys had below average seasons last year, due to injury, etc. Others are traditionally undervalued. These guys will slide a round or two beyond where they should. Don't miss out on them.
- Brassard started the 2008 season on fire, before being derailed by a season ending injury. Many managers may have forgetten about him completely. Assuming he's back to health, this could be a major breakout season for Brassard. Pull him out in a late round and you'll get your money's worth.
- With the sudden collapse of the Senators last season, followed by the Dany Heatley saga, most GM's will take it out on guys like Spezza. Don't be surprised to see him sliding into the later rounds. If that happens, snag him up. His goal totals have remained in the mid-30's. Only his assists slipped a bit last year. Expect Spezza to get back to at least a point-a-game pace in 2009.
- Statsny may well be the forgotten man at your draft table this fall. Don't be part of the crowd. His downturn in points over the last 2 seasons is all about injuries. Assuming he's fully recovered, you can expect a major rebound this season.
- 9 goals in 47 games as a rookie isn't too shabby. If he can stay in the lineup for the whole season, he just may be dark horse worth nabbing in a late round.
- Foster has a great points per game average over his career. The problem has been injuries. He seemed to show that he's fully recovered in the handful of games he played at the end of last season. Most GMs will ignore Foster completely. Save him for a late round pick and cash in big time.
- Don't give up on Wade Redden just yet. Most GMs will have written him off at this point due to the disappointing season he had in 2008. He's still a talented player. Probably the best the Rangers have to offer when Gaborik is out. Expect a return to the 10 goal territory for Redden.
- Visnovsky totaled only 31 points points last season, but he did so in only 50 games. Many GMs will overlook him after his injuries last season, and an average performance in 07; however, remember he scored close to 20 goals in the 2 seasons before that. Expect him to pop in 15 or so this season and get back to prominance as a top fantasy defenseman.
- Whitney struggled after returning from injury half way through the season. Don't let that fool you into passing on him at your draft table. Whitney was on track to be one of the top fantasy defensemen last year before the hurt came. With a new start in Anaheim next season, Whitney should get back to form, particularly with Pronger clearing the way for more ice time.
- It will be easy to forget and overlook Leclaire going into this season. He got off to a slow start, was injuried most of last season, then was moved to a falling Senators squad. But remember, he was a rising star in 2008, and Ottawa isn't blowing up their team. The Senators could easily bounce back to the playoffs this year, and Leclaire could certainly get back to the top 10 in the process.
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