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      2023 Fantasy Hockey Team Previews: Columbus Blue Jackets

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      The 2023 DailyFaceoff Fantasy Hockey Projections has projected stats for over 650 skaters and goalies.

      The Fantasy Hockey Team Previews have all the projections for that team and mini-bios for all the Re-Draft and Dynasty relevant skaters and goalies. We will release the previews from September 5th through September 14th.

      In addition to the Fantasy Hockey Previews, Daily Faceoff is previewing all 32 NHL teams for 2022-23, with a new in-depth breakdown dropping every weekday! Click here to find every preview in one place.


      Skaters

      Johnny Gaudreau

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      82.033.154.987.97.019.18.224.7233.614.2%18.90.911.811.3

      In one of the more shocking twists of the 2022 offseason, Gaudreau signed a seven-year, $68.25 million contract with the Blue Jackets after a career-high 115-point season in Calgary. Reaching both the 40-goal and 100-plus point plateaus for the first time in his career, Gaudreau was a fantasy god in 2021-22, ranking third in league scoring, third in assists, 15th in goals, first in plus/minus (+64), sixth in game-winning goals (9), and 17th in shots (262). Gaudreau has ranked eighth in both assists and points in the last five years. Gaudreau had great chemistry with Elias Lindholm and Matthew Tkachuk, playing nearly 1200 5v5 minutes together in the previous three seasons. The Blue Jackets do not have a centre of Lindholm’s quality, so expecting Gaudreau to repeat his 100-point season in year-one is a tough ask. Nevertheless, he should be a safe late-second/early-third-round pick that goes over a point-per-game. 

      Patrick Laine 

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      78.631.635.967.5-13.233.78.618.7220.014.4%1915.926.467.5

      Laine, unfortunately, finished 2021-22 prematurely after posting a point-per-game for the first time in his six-year career. Although neither his 26 goals nor 30 assists were career highs, he still finished 42nd in Points/GP (1.00) and 19th in GWG (7). In addition, his career rate of 3.01 shots per game proves he is no stranger to getting pucks towards the net. With two of the league’s best passers alongside him in Voracek and Gaudreau, Laine is an intriguing fantasy selection with a high goal ceiling. He hasn’t reached the 30-goal mark since 2019, but as long as he’s healthy, it should be a formality for him in 2023. 

      Jakub Voracek

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      79.89.951.761.6-7.735.22.119.1150.36.6%17.27.327.827.4

      Voracek led all Blue Jackets players in points in 2021-22. That is an impressive feat considering he only scored six goals. With 15 goals in his previous 132 games over the last two seasons, Voracek’s days of lighting the lamp seem long behind him. Nonetheless, only 12 other players have more assists than Voracek in the previous five seasons (245), making him an elite source of assist production. Look for the 33-year-old to provide similar mid-60s point production with limited goal-scoring upside as he outlets the Blue Jackets’ top powerplay this season.

      Gustav Nyquist 

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      81.016.931.548.3-6.927.03.79.2134.912.5%17.215.140.941.6

      Nyquist enjoyed somewhat of a career resurgence in 2021-22 as his 53 points were the most since 2014-15. Complemented by 18 goals, his highest total in five seasons, Nyquist provided elite shorthanded production as his four shorthanded goals were good for third-best in the NHL. At 33 years old, Nyquist has enjoyed eight 40-plus point seasons while never surpassing the 54-point plateau. Nyquist should flirt with 50 points again, making him a better streaming play than draft day option. 

      Zach Werenski 

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      71.914.834.148.9-9.322.53.715.6211.57.0%25.30.091.543.8

      The Blue Jackets’ top defenseman enjoyed a fine 2021-22 season as his career-high 48 points were good for 21st among defensemen. His impressive 0.71 Points/GP had him even higher (18th), while his 11 goals positioned him 16th as his season was cut short to just 68 games. A model of consistency, Werenski has the fifth most goals of any defenseman since 2017-18 (65) and the 21st most points during that span (190). He enters 2022-23 a lock to lead the Columbus blueline in 5v5 and PP usage. He’s a safe No.2 fantasy defenseman with career-best upside if the addition of Gaudreau goes swimmingly. 

      Jack Roslovic 

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      79.320.025.945.9-3.116.05.410.5135.514.8%15.4332.427.961.0

      For the first time in his five-year career, Roslovic obtained a 20/20 season in 2021-22. Finishing sixth in team scoring, Roslovic proved a dependent second-line centre while providing minuscule shooting numbers (131 SOG). Roslovic enters the season as a potential centre for one or both of Gaudreau and Laine. If he lands that role out of training camp, he could carry some upside with a last-round pick. 

      Boone Jenner

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      74.621.421.542.9-11.825.76.28.9182.511.7%19.2724.776.3109.7

      Jenner was on pace to smash his previous career-high in points, but injuries limited him to just 59 games. In 2022-23, Jenner could be Gaudreau’s new centre, which would help him maintain last year’s 32-goal pace. He gets added value in leagues that count hits and/or faceoff wins. He’s the only player that profiles for 30 goals, 100-plus hits and 700-plus FOW.

      Kent Johnson 

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      72.610.724.835.5-3.920.31.96.8104.610.3%14.20.016.152.7

      Fresh off an incredibly successful World Junior Championship, Johnson enters 2022-23 as one of the flashier and high-upside prospects in the NHL. A two-year standout at Michigan, Johnson closed out his collegiate career with 64 pts (17G / 47A) in 58 games. Johnson enjoyed a short nine-game introduction to the NHL at the end of 2021-22, where he posted his first three career assists. Johnson’s early outlook is capped by the fact the 2021 No.5 overall pick failed to record double-digit goals in either of his two NCAA seasons, a trend which will likely continue as he advances to the NHL. Johnson is an intriguing dynasty selection that figures to provide a decent volume of assists with meagre goal totals.

      Cole Sillinger

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      79.717.920.338.3-9.838.52.96.7160.911.1%14.6390.046.0105.5

      It was a bit of a surprise when the 18-year-old made the team out of training camp but made an immediate impact with eight points (4G / 4A) in his first 13 games. Overall, he had an impressive rookie season, as his 16 goals ranked him ninth among all first-year players, and his 31 points was good for 15th. However, in 2022-23, he’ll likely be limited to third-line minutes behind Boone Jenner and Roslovic, which makes him a dynasty-only option. 

      Kirill Marchenko

      GPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      68.716.513.830.3-7.717.94.77.9147.911.2%13.70.025.0124.4

      Marchenko was a second-round pick (No.49 overall) in 2018 and comes to the NHL after three seasons in the KHL. Last year, he had 12 goals and eight assists (20 points) in 39 games while playing just 11:59 ATOI with St. Petersburg SKA. Marchenko oozes with offensive ability but will have to beat out a stable veteran wingers for a top-6 role. Marchenko is someone worth monitoring as the season gets underway.

      Goalies

      Elvis Merzlikins 

      GSWLT/OSV%GAASO
      56.023.925.46.70.9102.983.8

      Merzlikins entered 2021-22, an intriguing fantasy selection surrounded by a glaringly weak team. The Blue Jackets ended up being a bottom-6 defensive team, which proved to be his downfall as he pitched a horrendous 3.22 GAA, ranking him 13th worst (among goalies with at least 20 starts). Merzlikins recovered some value with 27 wins (15th in the NHL), but with a below-average .907 SV%, he was a fringe fantasy starter for most of the season. Columbus’ idea of improving defensively this offseason was adding Erik Gudbranson. That doesn’t bode well for Merzlikins, whose splits will likely be below-average again. However, the improved offence should help him win a few more games, making him a No.3 fantasy option. 


      Remaining Blue Jackets Projections

      PlayerPosGPGAPTS(+/-)PIMPPGPPPSOGS%ATOIFOWBLKHIT
      Adam BoqvistD66.411.520.732.2-11.122.12.68.598.111.7%20.40.076.356.5
      Vladislav GavrikovD80.64.923.528.5-6.849.90.00.0103.64.8%22.30.0133.3119.3
      Eric RobinsonLW74.410.915.326.21.316.20.00.0109.89.9%13.23.222.6113.5
      Sean KuralyC77.110.213.723.9-3.744.10.00.9117.78.7%14.2494.040.7189.1
      Nick BlankenburgD77.98.512.921.5-13.335.52.66.4115.37.4%140.0106.4168.5
      Jake BeanD67.34.916.221.1-6.131.40.44.585.75.8%17.70.059.640.4
      Andrew PeekeD76.53.312.515.8-7.044.20.00.072.04.5%20.70.0144.8172.2
      Erik GudbransonD77.74.79.113.8-1.479.50.00.0117.04.0%18.20.094.3148.4
      Mathieu OlivierRW74.05.05.710.7-2.542.60.00.053.79.3%10.76.741.3158.5
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