Underrated D-Men- Hamhuis And Hedman

Dan Hamhuis and Victor Hedman are off to great starts early this year yet they still are not getting much love in the fantasy world.

Analysis: Dan Hamhuis was a 37 point defenseman last year(22nd in NHL) that was also plus-29(2nd among D-men). Those are key stats for fantasy hockey owners but Dan Hamhuis is only owned in about half of fantasy leagues and only fifteen percent of dreaded ESPN leagues. Thus far this season Hamhuis has three points in four games and is averaging twenty-two minutes of ice time on an average of twenty-seven shifts per game. There is no excuse why he isn’t universally owned in fantasy leagues.

Victor Hedman is one of our sleepers this year and he too has been playing well. You really cannot judge Hedman strictly on his points per game production but he does have two points in four games. He chews up ice time(21 min/g) and will be contributing in plus/minus this year(plus-6 so far) because Tampa Bay is one improved hockey club. I know it’s early but he is the 27th ranked defensemen this season and he will finish in the top 40. Hedman is available in about forty percent of fantasy leagues.

Value Picks- Victor Hedman

With the NHL lockout finally over it’s time to take a look at some key players on the verge of big seasons.

Analysis: Victor Hedman is now twenty-two years old and has yet to perform up to his second overall pick status. But if we take a look at what Hedman has done over the past year and a half we can clearly see his play is improving. Last year Hedman only put up 23 points but he did so in just 61 games. Had he played a full 82 game season Hedman would have posted 31 points which would not have been bad for a then twenty-one year old defenseman who was also 39th in time on ice last year among defenseman.

Fast forward to this season in the KHL and we have ourselves a rising star. Hedman is 10th in the KHL in points among defenseman despite playing at least ten fewer games than all nine players in front of him. He’ll return to a Tampa squad that was 8th in goals last year and upgraded their goaltending situation in the offseason. ESPN has Hedman as the 55th best defenseman this year behind Dmitry Kulikov(also a rising D-man) who is 39th in ESPN’s rankings. Kulikov is 103rd among KHL defenseman this year with 6 points in 22 games. If these awful rankings stick(one has to think ESPN will copy more informed experts at some point) Hedman is one of the big draft day value picks.