Fantasy Hockey

3 Fantasy Hockey Goalies to Avoid For Your Draft

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With the NHL starting the season very soon, fantasy hockey players will be drafting their teams right around now. In this strange season, certain goalies will have less value than they normally do. Let’s take a look at some goalies you should not draft in your upcoming fantasy hockey leagues. 

Tuukka Rask

The first goalie that should be avoided in your fantasy hockey league is Tuukka Rask. Now, Rask is still a great goalie as he was a finalist to win the Vezina trophy. The reason that he should be avoided is that he splits games with Jaroslav Halak. Last season the Boston Bruins played 70 regular-season games. Rask played in just 41 of those games. Since the goalies earn the most points from wins and shutouts, Tuukka Rask should be avoided since he will not have as many opportunities to earn those. 

Another reason why Rask may not be the best opinion for your fantasy goalie is that the Bruins have a very strong defense. Last season Rask only made 1,104 saves and allowed 85 goals. Those stats are great in real life but, for fantasy hockey purposes, goalies that face more shots are ideal.   

If you are using Tuukka Rask as a backup or even third-string goaltender then it is alright but you should not rely on him to carry your fantasy hockey team to the championship. 

Frederik Andersen

The next goalie that should be avoided in your fantasy hockey league is Frederik Andersen. Similar to Rask, Andersen will not be getting as many starts for the Toronto Maple Leafs as he used to. Last season, GM Kyle Dubas acquired Jack Campbell to be the backup goalie. Campbell is expected to get some more playing time this season to try and help Andersen be more rested for when the playoffs come. As previously stated, goalies get the most points from wins and shutouts. If Andersen gets fewer starts then he will not have the opportunity to gain those valuable points. 

Another reason why should be avoided is that he always a lot of goals. Last season Andersen played in 52 games and allowed 143 goals. In ESPN’s fantasy hockey, goalies get negative two points for each goal allowed, because of this you do not want a goalie that allows lots of goals. 

Although most Toronto Maple Leafs fans would disagree, Frederik Andersen is actually a really good goalie in real life. He bails out his terrible defense as he makes a lot of saves, but he also gives up a bunch of goals as he faced the fourth-most shots last season. If Andersen is your backup or third-string goalie your team is most likely very good and goaltending is one of your stronger positions. 

Braden Holtby

After spending the first ten years of his career playing for the Washington Capitals, Braden Holtby traded in his red and blue uniform for a green and blue Vancouver Canucks uniform during the offseason. Last season with Washington, Holtby did not have his best season as he posted a save percentage under .900 and a goals-against average over three.

With the Vancouver Canucks, Holtby will try and rebound and have a much improved season. Unfortunately for fantasy owners, even if Holtby rebounds, he will not be as valuable as he used to be since he will not get an overwhelming majority of playing time. Thatcher Demko impressed in the 2020 playoffs and has earned his opportunity to become a starting goalie. Demko and Holtby will split their games during the regular season. 

Just like Rask and Andersen, Holtby will suffer from a fantasy hockey perspective due to less playing time. If you want to draft a Vancouver goalie then Thatcher Demko is your best bet as he has more potential to get points. 

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Clancy Golden is one of the biggest hockey fans in the world. He loves writing and watching the beautiful sport of hockey.