Colorado Avalanche Fantasy: Draft Ideas


Colorado Avalanche draft picks for your fantasy play.

The NHL regular season is almost upon us, and we know what that means — it’s time to pick your fantasy draft. Now, if you’re anything like me, you want your turn to come around and you say, “Colorado Avalanche.” Essentially, I want to draft my whole team.

That’s not possible, of course, so here’s the next best thing — Colorado Avalanche players that calls “draft relevant.” There may not be any real surprises on this list — except that none of them go before the second round.

Gabriel Landeskog, #47

If you can pick only one Avalanche player, our captain is a good bet. Granted, he had that horrible slump last season. However, he made a strong comeback and finished second on the team for goals and tied for first for overall points.

Gabriel Landeskog’s average stat line for the past two seasons has been 25 goals, 38 assists, plus-10, 75 penalty minutes, 14 power-play points and 218 shots on goal. You could make something happen with that — just don’t get nervous if he has another slump. Landeskog himself says goals come in bunches for him, and he produced points and shots on goal during that time last year.

Matt Duchene, #51

Center Matt Duchene could go electric this season. Heaven knows he has the talent in him. If you got points for beautiful goals, Duchene would be top-10.

Unfortunately, Duchene is a streaky player. Even in his best seasons he goes through slumps. In his golden 2013-14 season, when he earned 70 points in 71 games, he went through stretches when he couldn’t buy a goal. And then there was last season…

I predict this could be Duchene’s breakout season when he scores 30+ goals for the first time in his career. I can’t say I’d draft him before Landeskog at this point, but I’d definitely put him in the second position.

Nathan MacKinnon, third round

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In Avs Nation, we don’t like to use the term “sophomore slump” to describe Nathan MacKinnon’s second season. However, he certainly hit a bump in the road.

MacKinnon is star material, though. His winning the Calder Trophy for rookie of the year was no fluke — 24 goals and 63 points with excellent peripherals. And last season wasn’t exactly a debacle. Sure, he only achieved 14 goals and 38 points in 64 games, but when he was on, he was on. He got his first NHL hat trick — and engaged in his first NHL fight. suggests drafting MacKinnon is the third round, though he’s ranked #53. He’d be my third Avs selection for sure.

Tyson Barrie, #104

If you like to gamble, pick up Tyson Barrie before even Nathan MacKinnon. The offensive defenseman bested MacKinnon in points with 53, though he had a full 80 games to achieve this. He only had 12 goals, but that just points to his being a assisting machine.

Barrie is entering only his third semi-full season in the NHL. He’s been working on his defensive game, and it shows in his +5 rating. That may not seem impressive until you realize how many players finished in the minus category last season.

Semyon Varlamov, #85

Semyon Varlamov is ranked #14 among goalies. Yes, you have your Henrik Lundqvists and your Carey Prices. But if you want an Avs-centric fantasy team, you’ve got to go for Semyon Varlamov.

Erik Johnson, #228

You want me in your fantasy league because you know I’d pick my favorite player first — Erik Johnson.

That said, there’s a reason defenseman Erik Johnson is a good pick — maybe even before Tyson Barrie. Last season Johnson was on pace to blow his career numbers out of the water. He earned 12 goals in just 41 games at a time when no one on the team was finding it easy to score goals. Couple with his assist production, Johnson could have easily cleared 45 points.

Erik Johnson is also a lot more defensively responsible than Tyson Barrie. Even though he gets the toughest assignments, he earned a +2 rating. Again, this was during the period of the season when almost all Avs players were in the minus category.

Nikita Zadorov

Do you like to gamble? If so, why not give Nikita Zadorov a try? I most certainly wouldn’t pick him before Barrie or Johnson. However, he’s a big boy in a big boy’s game, and he’ll rack up some penalty minutes.

Zadorov might just surprise on the points production as well, especially if he stays paired with Tyson Barrie. posits he might manage 40 points in the upcoming season. I think that’s a bit of a stretch, but 35 might be within the realm of possibility.

Which Colorado Avalanche players are must-haves for your fantasy draft?

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