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In the interest of helping your fantasy teams be the best they can be, I've taken a deep dive and looked at who's excelling so far this season. I have paid special attention to people who are rostered in around 50% of leagues or less, in hopes of bringing some guys who are flying under the radar to your attention.
· Boone Jenner (Columbus Blue Jackets)
The Columbus captain is quietly leading the team in goals with eight and sits second in points with 14. While Jenner tends to be fairly well known in the leagues that count hits and faceoff wins, he is only rostered in 46% of leagues on Yahoo. Now that he has locked down the Jackets top line center spot and is a fixture on their first power play, he's worth rostering in most formats despite recent injuries to the Blue Jackets core.
· Jordan Eberle (Seattle Kraken)
This one might be the most short-term of any of the players on this list, but Eberle is on a heater and it needs to be known. Eberle has tallied points in four of his last five games. Putting up seven overall including four goals, while registering 14 shots on goal in that span. Overall he's second to Andre Burakovsky in Kraken points with 15 in 19 games. He seems to have secured a spot on the second line alongside impressive rookie Matty Beniers, who is the real deal, and currently leads NHL rookies with 14 points. Eberle is currently only rostered in 7% of Yahoo leagues which is definitely too low as long as he stays hot.
· Ryan O'Reilly (St Louis Blues)
O'Reilly got off to an abysmal start registering one goal and no assists in his first 10 games. However in his last nine games he has seven points including four goals. On top of that he puts up solid hits, blocks, shots and elite face off numbers if your league counts those. Overall O’Reilly is currently rostered in a modest 43% of leagues on Yahoo, which seems light for a guy who's around a top hundred player over the last two weeks.
· Trevor Moore (Los Angeles Kings)
Moore has been a hot pickup recently going from the mid 30s% to 49% but that's still not high enough. After his breakout season last year he still was not on many people's radars, but now with six goals and 16 this season he should be. Moore has solidified his spot on the Kings' second even-strength line and second man-advantage unit. Moore is averaging over 18 minutes per night, while possessing dual wing eligibility; he needs to be owned in more leagues.
· Jakob Chychrun (Arizona Coyotes)
Chychrun made his season debut Monday against the Nashville Predators, despite going pointless; he showed he has a clear top role getting 23 minutes of ice time. He last played in March prior to wrist and ankle surgeries, but he seems to be back better than before. Last year Chychrun piled up 7 goals, 21 points, 141 shots, 66 blocks and 51 hits in 47 games. It didn't take him long to get on the scoresheet this year as he helped the Coyotes upset the Hurricanes, getting an assist and taking a whopping eight shots which led the Coyotes. Despite some people stashing him on injured reserve early in the year he is still available in 50% of leagues on Yahoo.
· Cam Fowler (Anaheim Ducks)
Fowler recently reclaimed the quarterback job on the first power-play unit from newcomer John Klingberg, and immediately set about proving it was the right choice by putting up eight points in his last five games. On top of this Fowler has played at least 23:54 minutes of ice time in every game the last 2 weeks, and that kind of volume all but guarantees production. While he may not be the greatest in banger leagues he definitely has significant value in standard leagues, especially given he is shooting a ton and Anaheim has the most off nights of any team this season.
· Mike Matheson (Montreal Canadiens)
Matheson returned from injury three games ago and immediately looked in midseason form, he is going to play a major role for the Canadiens this year. He scored a goal in his first game back and played on the first power-play, exposing him to top 75 forwards Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield. On top of that, the preseason darling led the Canadiens defense in ice time, in his debut with 23:57. Furthermore, Matheson has got three shots to the net in all three games so far. Currently rostered in only 18% of leagues on Yahoo he's definitely worth a look, especially in deeper leagues.
John Gibson (Anaheim Ducks)
Gibson may be struggling so far this season, but he's been showing signs of improvement. Gibby has a firm grip on the starting role in Anaheim, setting him up to play a ton. It may not always be the prettiest, but in leagues that give good points for saves Gibson will be returning good value all season; given he's a bell-cow for the Ducks. It seems inevitable that his numbers will even out as the season wears on and it appears to be starting now. Furthermore, don't forget what I said above about Anaheim’s off nights, it's always good to maximize guys playing when the game slate is light.
Karel Vejmelka (Arizona Coyotes)
Vejmelka registered his second shutout of the season on Wednesday, blanking the formidable Hurricanes on 36 shots. While the Coyotes played solid defense in front of him (at times), he often faces a very high-volume. For example, in the first period against the Canes the Yotes were outshot 14 to 1. He's easily been better than expected this season, now sporting a 6-5-1 record with a 2.98 GAA and a .916 save percentage. This is definitely a guy that should be owned in more than 37% of leagues on Yahoo