With each team having played 20-26 games, it’s time for some serious reexamination of draft season. This seems like as good a time as any to take a look at some quarter-season ADP underperformers. Using Yahoo! ADPs, I picked a few stand-outs to discuss and touched on the reasons for their underperformance. I made sure to stay away from players who have missed significant time due to injury.
Nikita Kucherov – ADP 1.6
A point-per-game pace is by no means bad, but based on where you took Kucherov, it’s hard to label him as anything other than an underperformer. This could take a turn as soon as the Lightning power play starts getting more opportunities – they are 30th in the league in that category – but right now, it’s easy to regret taking Kucherov first overall. Especially knowing how well the other guys are playing that you passed up (McDavid, Ovechkin, MacKinnon). Something that we do every season in fantasy is take for granted repeat performances of career years and we may be guilty of that again this year with Kucherov.
Johnny Gaudreau – ADP 18
Many people were predicting a regression for the Calgary Flames players, but instead what we’re getting is just kinda ridiculous. Leading the way is star winger Johnny Gaudreau with just 18 pts in 24 games – a pace of 59 points over a full season. Why could this be the case? Not only has he not been shooting as much as in previous seasons, but those shots also aren’t going in at the same rate. A career 12.5% shooter, he’s shooting at a meager 7.2% in all situations so far this year and only 4.4% at 5v5. As a second round-pick drafted for lofty point totals, he is a clear underperformer. However, these low shooting percentages cannot be expected to last long – Gaudreau is just too talented a player.
Pekka Rinne – ADP 38
Here are some alarming numbers:
- First 8 starts – 7W, .934 sv%, 1.74 GAA, 2 SO
- Last 6 Starts – 1W, .803 sv%, 5.34 GAA, 0 SO
If you’re in a categories league, Rinne was able to help you win the early weeks and has left you out to dry recently. This isn’t a situation where the team in front of him is blowing it either. They’re actually playing really well over this stretch in all situations – second in CF%, second in SF%, and fifth in xGF%. Will Rinne be able to turn it around? You would hope so, but this might be one of the single worst stretches of his career, so it’s hard not to think of his age (37) and get nervous about his outlook. The only thing you can do is hold for now and hope this underperformer returns to the play we’re accustomed to.
P.K. Subban – ADP 58
We in the fantasy community were all very excited about the possible re-emergence of P.K. Subban after his trade from the Nashville Predators to the New Jersey Devils. “He’s going to be “the guy” again,” we said. Not true! Twenty-two games in and P.K. Subban is off the top pairing and the first PP unit. He’s got five points and zero powerplay points, but at least he’s contributing in the shots (55), PIM (26), hits (21), and blocks (26) categories. But that’s not why you drafted him at 68th overall. There could be some upside with Subban as his S% (3.6%) and his IPP (26.3%) are both near career lows. Some positive regression on those two stats would go a long way to help his point totals, but it will be an uphill climb if Subban doesn’t see more time on the powerplay.
Jakob Voracek – ADP 88
Players taken near the 90th pick in the draft are usually of the high floor or at least low-risk variety. Jake Voracek has been just that for the last five seasons getting at least 55 points in each and spiking 80-plus points in two of those years. Things aren’t going as planned this season for the Flyer as he is currently on pace for only 50 points and his ATOI is down to 16:30 per game. Furthermore, the Flyers have started calling up reinforcements from their AHL team in the form of well-regarded prospects winger Joel Farabee and center Morgan Frost. It’s possible that father time is catching up to this underperformer (Voracek is 30) and if he can’t get it together soon, he’s in danger of losing his job.
For some of these quarter-season ADP underperformers, a few more lucky bounces could turn their season around. For others, they just may not be as valuable a fantasy asset this year as we originally thought. Whatever the case may be, if these guys are on your team, odds are you aren’t too pleased with their output.
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