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Fantasy Hockey Implications of Mark Stone Injury

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This was not the news the Vegas Golden Knights needed. In an already injury-plagued season, forward Mark Stone underwent his second back surgery in a calendar year. His return to the lineup is undetermined.

Fantasy Hockey Implications Of Mark Stone’s Injury

Stone had been a fairly productive fantasy hockey option this season. He’s been a driving force for Vegas and his absence has already been felt. In missing the past eight games, Vegas has a lone victory. They have scored three or more goals in a game just twice time during that stretch. That does not scream confidence in replacing Stone with another Vegas player. But that production must be replaced if you are to get through his absence. Yahoo and ESPN fantasy hockey leagues have him rostered by 82% and 85% of owners, respectively. For those four in five of you, here are some suggestions.

Potential Golden Knights Replacements

Two options inside of Vegas may be the best place to look for deeper leagues. Both William Carrier and Phil Kessel have played additional minutes since Stone first missed time. Carrier has recently returned from an injury himself. In his past four games, he has four points. In total, Carrier has 12 goals and 18 points in 45 games. That is already his career high in goals with many more to play. Carrier also adds something that Stone also leaves your fantasy hockey team short on: throwing the body for banger categories. While we are at it, here is your fun fact for him. Of Carrier’s 12 goals, five of them are of the game-winning variety. The Golden Knights have 26 regulation or overtime wins. For those of you who get bonus points for those goals, a nearly 20% click for the team is worth consideration.

Kessel seems to provide the least value here. Yes, his ice time is up, but not nearly as much as Carrier’s. But one thing Kessel provides that Carrier does not is power play production. Carrier has begun to see some time on the power play. Kessel however is a staple, averaging 1.5 minutes per game and sits eighth on the squad in power-play points. If your league offers a bonus for power-play points, there is added value here. Is it enough value though? That depends on your league. Carrier seems to be the safer all-around option, but we believe there is better value outside the Vegas roster.

Victor Olofsson should be available

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In the last 30 days, only four players have lit the lamp ten or more times. Olofsson is one of them. Two of those goals were on the power play and three of them were game-winners. He is hot right now and his upcoming schedule shows the potential for instant value (some of you will choose to ride the carousel based on matchups). Upcoming games after the break include three against bottom-third defensive units and two bottom-six penalty kill teams. Olofsson’s ownership stands at the mid-20s for both Yahoo and ESPN. This is most definitely for deeper leagues of course, but even in light leagues, this may be worth looking at just as a surprise pickup.

Consider Anze Kopitar In Smaller Leagues

It is easy for fantasy content to suggest replacing a steady producer with a player we know is not available. Yes, really tough decision to suggest picking up Tage Thompson. What a genius move. But Kopitar is only rostered by 78% of Yahoo fantasy hockey owners. He has been on fire lately, and it may be because he is more rested. His ice time has declined a little bit over the last five games or so. During that stretch, Kopitar has four goals, four assists, and two power-play goals. This was not against weaker opponents either. His best game was against the Carolina Hurricanes, who, you know, are good. If this trend continues, then this becomes a very good replacement for Stone…if of course, he is available.

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