Hello everyone and welcome in for another article. This is the second installment of a weekly article I’ll be writing all season long in which I’ll try to determine the truth about puzzling players. I pull suggestions for who to write about for these articles from the Apples & Ginos community on Discord and the Apples & Ginos Patreon members. Be sure you check out those spots to catch up with me where I would be more than happy to answer any questions you have about Boone Jenner, yetis, or anything else that can terrify you with a smile!
Jeff Petry, D – Montreal Canadiens
This was supposed to be Jeff Petry’s year. With Shea Weber out with potentially career-ending injuries, Petry was in line to see increased minutes and especially a large power play share that would propel him into top-10 fantasy defenseman status. All of that has come true, and Petry himself has flopped. The shot rate is atrocious, his hit and block rates are way down and Petry is below 50% Corsi For % at even strength which unbelievable territory for a guy who has hung out in the 55-57% range the last three years. Perhaps it’s just a blip and Petry will right the ship, but he’s legitimately playing poorly by any measure right now. I wouldn’t be panic-selling him as he is seeing nearly four minutes a night on the PP which should eventually result in some points, but I also wouldn’t fault you for testing the waters and seeing if you can still get full price for him on the trade market.
Verdict: No two ways about it, Petry is playing terribly. Has the history to make you think he’ll turn it around but doesn’t hurt to shop around
Kevin Fiala, RW – Minnesota Wild
Oh yeah, I’m big time excited about Kevin Fiala. The third-line minutes with Victor Rask and Frederick Gaudreau not so much, but Fiala is seeing 19:21 a night through the first five games of the season, a full 2:28 more than he averaged last year. While that’s going on he’s maintaining or exceeding all the chance generation stats that made me fall in love before the 2021 season. That’s including 13.02 individual scoring chance for/60 (iSCF/60) rate that ranks 27th in the league. Fiala is a powder keg waiting to explode, shooting just 5.6% (normally 12.5-13.0% in his wild tenure) with a 60% individual points percentage (normally 78-80%) and an 8.2% on-ice shooting percentage (normally 10.5-11.0%). Fiala has real point-per-game potential with this level of deployment (regardless of linemates) and I am here for it.
Verdict: Buy if you can, hold on to your hat if you’ve got him
John Carlson, D – Washington Capitals
I’ve got concerns with Carlson. The shots are down (although as I write this on Monday evening he’s got three shots and a goal against Ottawa partially into the third period) and his minutes have been gradually declining year over year for the last four years. His IPP is definitely low at just 33%, but he may not be the offensive force we expect him to be if he can’t get those shots firing. Given he’s been elite for so long I’m not nearly ready to write him off after a subpar five games, but the concerns are real and he’s got my attention with this slow start. Hopefully tonight’s goal gets him untracked and headed in the right direction again.
Verdict: No moves to make here… yet
Boone Jenner, C – Columbus Blue Jackets
Boone Jenner has had a hot start centering Patrik Laine and Jakub Voracek and enjoying time on Columbus’s top PP unit. Jenner had four goals in five game before tonight’s tilt against the Stars including three power play goals. Jenner hits, blocks, takes faceoffs, and was skating 20:20 per night through those five games. He’s a great streaming option and while he will certainly come down from his current 33% shooting percentage, he’s going to be fantasy relevant as long as he keeps this deployment up. A 50-55 point season is not unreasonable in these circumstances.
Verdict: Perfect streamer type in weeks where Columbus has lots of games or off-nights
Seth Jones, D – Chicago Blackhawks
Much has been made of Seth Jones’ huge contract and the analytics crowd has piled on Jones’ overall play. But when I look at Jones I see a defenseman who ranks a very respectable 22nd among all defensemen in shots/60 while skating nearly 26 minutes a game and getting every opportunity necessary to put up big points alongside Patrick Kane and Alex DeBrincat. Take away defensemen skating under 18 minutes/game and Jones ranks 10th in the league in on-ice Corsi For/60. I don’t care if it’s all coming on the power play, all that number means to me is points coming Jones’s way. Curiously, his hits have dried up significantly thus far so he may not be the same source of peripherals you thought you were getting when you took him in your draft; but as far as the offensive output is concerned I have zero doubts that Jones is capable and ready to produce a 55-point season.
Verdict: Hits going away is an odd one but Jones is going to put up points
That’s all for this one folks, I hope you had as much fun reading it as I had writing it! Make sure you follow Apples & Ginos on Twitter, on TikTok, and join the Apples & Ginos Discord server for more content and to ask any fantasy hockey questions you may have.
Thanks for reading, you are appreciated!