Fantasy hockey rankings 2021-22: Best NHL sleepers, breakouts and busts from proven computer simulation

The 2021-22 NHL season will begin on Oct. 12, meaning that time is running out to prepare for your upcoming 2021-22 Fantasy hockey drafts. After the coronavirus shortened last season to 56 games, the NHL has gone back to 82 games. With NHL players also returning to the 2022 Winter Olympics, depth will be crucial in Fantasy hockey. That means identifying potential 2021-22 Fantasy hockey sleepers and 2021-22 Fantasy hockey breakouts available in the middle and late rounds will be key.

It will also mean that you have to avoid potential 2021-22 Fantasy hockey busts near the top of the draft. Predicting production out of goalies is always particularly challenging, but a reliable set of 2021-22 Fantasy hockey rankings can help you figure out where to target guys like Andrei Vasilevskiy, Connor Hellebuyck and Semyon Varlamov. Before setting your 2021 Fantasy hockey draft strategy, check out the Fantasy hockey rankings 2021-22 from the proven computer model at SportsLine.

Last year, the model predicted Andre Burakovsky would have a top-100 season despite the fact that he was going undrafted, and the Avalanche winger produced 19 goals and 25 assists in 53 games. It also predicted Penguins goalie Tristan Jarry wouldn’t live up to his top-70 Fantasy hockey ADP and he saw his GAA drop from 2.43 to 2.75 and his save percentage fall from .921 to .909 season over season.

The model was created by Mike McClure, a predictive data engineer and professional daily Fantasy player with almost $2 million in career winnings. He’s used his prediction model to simulate the entire 2021-22 NHL schedule 10,000 times and identify the top Fantasy hockey sleepers, breakouts and busts. Head to SportsLine now to see them.

McClure’s model takes factors such as player history, schedule, injuries and matchups into account to create the most unbiased 2021-22 Fantasy hockey rankings possible. Now the model has zeroed in on the 2021-22 NHL season, ranked every player, and found the top sleepers, breakouts and busts. See every pick here.

Top 2021-22 Fantasy hockey picks

One of the 2021-22 Fantasy hockey busts SportsLine has identified: Jakob Chychrun. The 23-year-old Arizona Coyotes defenseman led all NHL defenders in scoring last season with 18 goals. Arizona primarily addressed attacking needs on its roster in the offseason, and Chychrun will bear the brunt of the load on defense this season. Last year he was logging more minutes on the ice than ever, and in 2021-22, the Coyotes are thinner and more inexperienced on defense than other teams.

Chychrun was likely due for a bit of goal-scoring regression already, but Arizona is going to have to keep him upright and active this season. If Chychrun goes down, the Coyotes would have a concerning scenario on their blue line. He played every game in 2020-21, but the NHL moved back to 82 games this year. Chychrun’s current Fantasy hockey ADP is falling in the sixth round, but SportsLine’s model projects that his true 2021-22 value places him as an early ninth-rounder.

Another surprise: Golden Knights wing Max Pacioretty in one of the top 2021-22 Fantasy hockey sleepers. The 32-year-old American has 226 goals and 222 assists during his first 10 seasons in the NHL, and he produced more than a point per game last season with 24 goals and 27 assists in 48 contests.

Pacioretty has a clearly defined role in Las Vegas and has played just under 18 minutes per night in each of the last two seasons. He plays a pivotal role on the power play (31 power play points the last two years) and is still a force at even strength (72 even strength points). That’s a big reason why the model ranks him as a top 30 option despite the fact that his current 2021-22 Fantasy hockey ADP is 78.

How to find proven 2021-22 Fantasy hockey rankings

The model has also made a surprising call on new Blackhawks goalie and last year’s Vezina winner Marc-Andre Fleury, and it features a stunner in the top 10 you won’t want to miss. You can only see the latest Fantasy hockey rankings 2021-22 here.

So what’s the exact value of every NHL player in the 2021-22 Fantasy hockey rankings? And what surprising player cracked the top 10? Visit SportsLine now to get Fantasy hockey rankings, all from a DFS pro who has won almost $2 million in his career and has simulated the entire NHL season 10,000 times, and find out.

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